The Everyday Lore Project

6 March 2020 – Thimble

6 March 2020 – Thimble

Today I’ve been wearing a thimble, because it’s said that wearing a thimble out of doors is good luck. And today I’ve been in need of some of that. 

I live in a two-thimble household. One is a pink plastic thimble I won in a Christmas cracker, the other is a kiss. For those who’ve never seen Peter Pan, firstly, how very dare you, and secondly, a thimble was Wendy’s proxy kiss to Peter, receiving an acorn button from him in return, the children’s literature equivalent of Chekov’s shotgun. 

But my thimble literally is Wendy’s kiss, as it’s one of the original thimbles from the West Yorkshire Playhouse’s 1995-6 production of Peter Pan. Both Christmases I worked at Leeds were spent on Peter Pan and I can’t think of a more magical play. Plus I was Tinkerbell in the curtain call. You can stuff your King Lears, it doesn’t get better than Tink. 

And apart from me questioning whether balconies and buses were technically out of doors, wearing a thimble was easy. And as a fidgeter, I don’t say that lightly. I was expecting to be playing with it all the time, but it sat there quite happily like a silver finger helmet. Having said that, this morning my fingers were considerably more fat than they were tonight, so this morning both middle fingers were good homes, but tonight it was just my thumb, and my left thumb at that, seeing as it’s still wounded from being cut after my last bout of trying to boost my luck. 

I’m not sure if the thimble brought the luck, but none of the things that had me worried today turned out for the worse. Nevertheless, I’m going to pop it back in my coat pocket for a dose of reassurance should any little luck emergencies arise.

I’ve kept that kiss for over twenty years, and through about ten moves. So maybe, despite my earlier protestations, there might just be a tiny sliver of the romantic in me after all.


Daniels, C.L. & Stevans, C.M (eds) (2003) Encyclopædia of Superstitions, Folklore, and the Occult Sciences of the World, Hawaii, University Press of the Pacific

Published by Liza Frank

Author of My Celebrity Boyfriend. Obsessed with hula hooping, sons of preachermen and fresh dates, sometimes all at the same time. Curator of Folklore Agony and The Everyday Lore Project.

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