Both my grandmothers worked in the garment district in NYC. My father’s mom (Nonni) made coats and my mother’s mom (Ida) made hats. This is a story that Ida used to tell.
Ida had breast cancer and had one removed while she was still working. Pins were a mainstay in the industry, and my grandmother decided that it was too cumbersome to carry around a pin cushion, especially when she had her own portable built-in pin cushion. One of her favorite jokes to play on new hires was to, in the normal process of hat making, pull a pin out of a hat and jab it into her fake breast.
You can imagine how funny it looked seeing her walk around with a bunch of pins sticking out of her chest, but the faces of new hires must have been hilarious as they watched her take a pin and stick it in her breast (She would do it before there were any others there). I still laugh picturing my grandmother mimicking herself jabbing the pin in.