History of WW1 Sweetheart Pincushions

one hundred sawdust hearts

IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM

© IWM (EPH 4231)

Catalogue number

  • EPH 4231

Department

Exhibits

Materials

  • Decoration: metal

  • Decoration: plastic

  • Pin Cushion: fabric

  • Beads: glass

  • Decoupage: paper

Dimensions

  • whole: 18, 19

Alternative names

  • full name: sweet heart pin cushion

  • simple name: TRE

Category

souvenirs and ephemera

Label

A First World War period 'sweetheart' pin cushion that was possibly commercially produced as a kit for convalescing and disabled soldiers as well as civilians.

Physical description

Heart-shaped pin cushion decorated with glass beads, sequins, two embroidered panels with 'Think of Me' inscription: 'Think of Me When the golden sun is sinking, and your mind from care set free, when of others you are thinking, will you sometimes Think of Me'. Also paper decoupage of Essex Regiment crest; decorated with bobble ribbon around edge.

Inscription

'Think of Me When the golden sun is sinking, and your mind from care set free, when of others you are thinking, will you sometimes Think of Me'

'Essex Regiment'

These embroidered cushions, measuring about 20cm in width and decorated with beading and decoupage are known as Sweetheart Pincushions.

 

Produced in World War One (1914-1918) mostly by wounded soldiers as they recovered in hospital, they were sent home to wives, mothers and loved ones as a token of affection across the miles.

Often featuring short mottos such as “Forget Me Not” and “Remember Me”, plus snippets of verse, these cushions act as a tender expression of remembrance and record a little piece of history.

© 2015 by Helen Birmingham