A few sore fingers later…I finished hand quilting my fairy wings. BTW, I put sports tape on my fingertips when I hand sew, sometimes two layers thick, usually on my index and ring fingers of both hands. Sometimes I just switch the tape from one finger to the other on my left hand, depending on which I am using and what is more comfortable.
I have three leather thimbles I use in addition to the tape, when I can, but I find my precision is always somewhat diminished by the use of thimbles. I removed the plastic protectors from my leather thimbles to keep the needle from slipping and sewed them a little tighter to fit my fingers better. I put them over my taped fingertips. The tape cuts down on the pricking and the thimbles relieve some of the pressure of the needle which causes soreness. I did these wings with just the tape, which was less clumsy, but a little more painful. I don’t seem to take to using metal thimbles, however more of a charming they may be than sports tape.