My great aunt Martha was a tall, slender, very proper woman, born in 1896. She cross-stitched, did some white work and tatting and crochet work and had carefully saved all the lace collars and ribbons from her dresses and hats. She also had inherited a big wooden cigar box with buttons and buckles from her mother, my great grandmother Lydia. Luckily I now have some of her sewing things, among them this pincushion:

pincushion

The fabrics pinned to the cushion are 1.5″ square. The cushion itself is a red cotton velveteen, I think, that is stuffed with what appears to be unbleached cotton fibers.

pincushion1

I originally thought maybe the pressed glass base was the bottom of a cake stand, but a few minutes ago I poked my finger into the cushion to verify that. The red cushion is hand-stitched below a square shaped border; when I felt something above that I thought it might be a candle holder, but I was wrong. It’s…

pincushion2

… an uneven, rough-edged broken glass post. Do you think this could have originally been the base of an oil burning table lamp that had had an accident at some point?

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