Partly Solved Mysteries

Posted on both blogs Oh Sew Tempting and Sewing Beside the Sea.

Hi everyone,

Last week I posted about two mystery objects that I’d found when going through my late Aunt Edith’s crafting goodies. I asked for your suggestions for their uses and promised to reveal the answers to you this week. The original post is here if you want to see more photos.

I already knew what this object was used for.


It’s a tool for making proggy mats. Proggy, or clippy mats, as we call them in the North East of England were made from wool or strips of fabric, reclaimed from worn out clothes. My maternal Grandmother, who died before I was born, was apparently an expert clippy mat maker. I wish I could have met her because I’m told she was an amazing craftswoman who could turn her hands to many different crafts.

Here is a link to some modern proggy mats on Pinterest.


When the tool is pushed against the rug backing, the “proggy bit”, which is loaded with wool or fabric strip, pushes through. When the tool is pulled away from the rug, the internal spring makes the “proggy bit” retract back inside the metal tube.

This is the original box.


And the instructions.



So now you know what it is for Smile.

Now, the second mystery object is still a mystery in my opinion.


Several readers thought it might be a hinge. There were also other ideas. I think they mean the type of hinge that stops a drop down lid from dropping too far. For example on a writing bureau or upwards on the lid of a chest. I’m not convinced it is a hinge as it doesn’t straighten so I’m still open to suggestions on that one. I just don’t understand why this would have been stored with Aunt Edith’s crafty things if it is a hinge.

So, sorry I don’t have an answer to Mystery number 2 but I hope you enjoy looking at the proggy mats anyway Smile.

Avis x


Leave a comment


  1. Love it – and how great to have the original box and instructions in such pristine conditions.

    • Exactly, they are “as new” but the tool has been used. I doubt whether the instructions had ever been opened 🙂

  2. I never knew about proggy mats. Thanks for opening my eyes.

    • Yes, most of our houses only had lino on the floors during the 60’s so it was a way of having a little warm luxury underfoot. Nothing was wasted in those days 🙂

  3. wow.. love the idea of the tool in making proggy rug.. I actually thought it was making a teddy bear tool or something.. thank you for the craft lesson.. and not too sure what tne 2nd one is for.. but there’s something like that here which the barber used for shaving.. but I doubt it.. unless there’s blade to it or something.. or well.. i guess I’m not too good with guessing.. 😉

  4. Hmm……. Interesting, I now remember having a hook almost like this one, hidden in a box. Never know how to use it 🙂 Now I know, must go and find it!!!!
    Gun, Sweden

    • I hope you find it and can make use of it. I’ve made rugs myself with a latch hook but never the proggy style ones 🙂

      • So if I find it……….the problem is: When will I ever have time to make these rugs? 🙂

  5. witchylin

     /  May 12, 2014

    So the mystery is solved for number 1. Not what I though at all. 😉
    However the second mystery remains exactly that. There must be someone out there who knows what it is.

    • Someone will definitely know what it is. If it is a hinge my Dad will know. I need to take it to him and find out 🙂

  6. Beth (aka Seaeagle)

     /  May 12, 2014

    Is the hinge like thing fairly stiff to move? could it be a device for drawing circles of various sizes?

  7. claire93

     /  May 13, 2014

    ah yes, I’ve seen this rug-making technique.
    There’s a new one out, called “punch needle” which is basically the same but for small projects, not rugs

    • Yes, that’s it. The punch needle projects I’ve seen are bags and cushions. I’m not sure whether I fancy making a proggy mat or not. Maybe one day 🙂

  8. Mandy

     /  June 30, 2014

    This sort of hinge is used for doors that drop downwards. It won’t straighten, is the slight bend gives it strength. 🙂


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