Lace-making Bobbin

About this object

History of use

Used to hold a continuous length of thread, for making bobbin lace. Beads are added to give weight to the end of the bobbin, to keep it in place as the operator rapidly tosses it under and over the surrounding threads. "the worker held the bobbin about one inch from the beads . . . The beads were often tokens of love as were the bobbins, or (were) handed down from grandma to grand daughter. A girl would start with a set of plain wooden bobbins with nondescript beads and the changes in colour and variety of woods, ivory or bone would indicate her popularity as she grew older and progressed in lace making." "hand-carved bobbins made by family or boy friends made precious birthday gifts. Beads from different parts of the world were treasured too."

Physical description

Turned wooden bobbin, plain design. Two glass beads attached to the end with a loop of steel wire.