from The Century Dictionary.
- noun In shoe manufacturing, a trough containing shoemakers' wax, which is kept hot by a lamp. It is attached to a sewing-machine, and the thread is caused to pass through it.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
You may, if you like, be a thread-waxer or a needle-threader; you may be one of the thirty men it takes to make a buttonhole, but a complete tailor -- alas! it is impossible. '
Prose Fancies Richard Le Gallienne 1906