Make a custom-fitted thimble

All you need for this quick project are some scraps of leather, a bit of hard plastic (cut, for example, from a milk jug), some glue, and an optional short piece of cord elastic.

To make the pattern

1. Trace full-size pattern and adjust to fit middle finger on dominant hand by adding or trimming at top seam.

2. Use dime as template to cut two leather circles for tip and one plastic insert. Trim scant 1/8 in. from plastic circle.
To sew together

1. Glue top seam together at edge. Allow to dry; then stitch by hand or machine with 1/16-in. seam.

2. Sandwich plastic tip between leather circles. Glue leather circles together at edge.
To sew together continued...

3. Glue circle sandwich to tip end of thimble, matching raw edges. Allow to dry; then stitch around circle twice by hand (use leather needle) with 1/16-in. seam. Stitch only leather layers, not plastic. Trim unevenness.

4. Pull thimble over finger. Mark two dots 1/4 in. from each side of seam and just behind first knuckle. Remove from finger, and cut small slit at each dot.

5. Cut small strip of leather 1 in. x 3/16 in. for belt. Slip through slits, pull up to tighten, overlap, and glue together.

6. For alternative elastic belt, cut two additional slits 1/2 in. below top slits. Thread a 2-in. strip of cord elastic through slits, pull up to tighten, overlap, and glue in place.Trim away excess cord. Cover cord join with small strip of leather glued in place and shaped over cord.

7. Glue piece of soft cotton or leather to inside of tail area. Trim away excess fabric around tail's edge.