Monday, March 23, 2015

Fitted Sewing Cases

In my box of goodies that I received the other day, was a magazine called  Sampler and Antique Needlework Quarterly.  I had so much fun looking through it especially when I ran across two articles.  One showed an Italian Black Iron thimble.  Obviously it wasn't very popular for long because iron is very heavy to be putting on the fingers.

Another article that I liked was one showing pictures of fitted sewing cases.  I think it would have been great to have had one of these.  There is just something about opening up your sewing case and everything you needed was right there.  

The article said this first one was probably English and around the middle of the nineteenth century.  5 15/16" wide x 4 1/2" high.  

The second picture is a beige leather case around 1898 from Providence Rhode Island and is 5 7/8" wide x 4 5/8" high.  I like the floral motifs on the scissors, etc.  The picture marked 3 is French and the tools are silver.  It's from the early nineteenth century 5 13/16" wide x 4" high.  You can, of course, read these comments on the pictures number 1-4 but I'm just typing them also so you don't have to strain your eyes as much.  :)  The one marked four is very nice.  I love the pull out drawer.  Don't let the picture fool you.  Even with the pull out drawer it is only 5 15/16" wide x 4" high.  It is English and has silver tools in the red leather case.  The article puts it around 1820.  

Number 5 is French and has silver and steel tools in red leather.  From the Nineteenth century it is 4 7/8" wide x 2 3/4" high.  Number 6 is a little difficult to see since the picture was split and put on two pages.  It is a French red leather case with silver tools from early nineteenth century.  It is 4 7/8" wide x 2 7/8" high.  Even though you can't see it, the case is embossed with lute, bird and diamond motifs.

Number 7 is a blue leather case from England probably between 1841-1910.  It is  8/1/4" wide x 3" high.  The scissor blades are marked "SHEFFIELD" and the blade and shank are marked "Steel" with a Birmingham hallmark.  The thimble is from Dorcas.  

Number 8 is Austrian Silver and enamel tools in a blue leather case.  Early twentieth century this time with it being 5" x 6 1/4" high.  The knife in it would have been used for pressing.  The silver is matte finished and the design is art deco which was so popular at the time.

Number 9 is French and a little different.  It is a tapered  brown leather sewing case from around the middle of the nineteenth century.  it goes from 1" - 4" wide x 5 3/4" high.  The pins in it are pearl headed.  I like how it opens up and can just imagine a lady sitting down and slowly opening up her case to it is all handy.

The sewing cases came in all shapes and number 10 shows a French one that is oval shaped.  It has silver gilt tools in a light red case and measures around 5 1/8" wide x 3 1/2" high.  It is from 1880 and shows the case being marked "Dreiger & Co, 5th Avenue, New York".  Next to it  (No. 11) is a tapered French sewing case.  It has silver gilted tools in red leather.  This French sewing case measures 3 1/2" wide x 6 1/4" high and was used in the early nineteenth century.  It has a cornucopia motif to it and it was imported from "Dreiger B C in New York".  

Picture 12 has a little different design.  It is French and has silver gilt tools in a tan leather case.  It was used around 1900 and is 2 7/8" - 3 1/2" wide x 5 3/4" high.  When closed it is suppose to be shaped like the neck and upper chest of a woman.  I'll take their word on that part.  LOL.  Number 13 is fun since it is a fan figured sewing case.  The article suggests it could be from England.  It has steel and bone tools in red panne' velvet case.  It is estimated to come from the late nineteenth or early twentieth century and measure 2 1/4" wide x 11 1/2" long.  Notice that the vertical sewing cases all had strips to hold the pieces in place.  Sometimes it was made out of ribbon and sometimes leather.   The article also hinted that this could have been used by a lady of the evening.  She could be sewing until needed and then simply fold it up and she had her fan again.  I discount it because I didn't think ladies of the evening would have the opportunity to do needlework when they were on the job but also the fan is only the motif and not functional as a fan.  It it still fun to see and perhaps they did use it, who knows.  As they say, that was "before my time".

The last one pictured and talked about in the article is number 14.  The iron figure sewing case.  The source of it was unknown but there was steel and bone tools in steel blue leather case with silver fittings.  Estimated to be early twentieth century it measures 4 3/4" wide x 6" long.  The tools in it are not matching but are from the same era and notice that they put crochet hooks in their sewing cases as well.  I wonder if they could heat up the iron figure sewing case and it served also as a pressing tool

]I hope you enjoyed seeing the different sewing cases.  Do you think your sewing case will last for over a century?  I know mine won't.  LOL.

I will be doing some cross stitch today at lunch instead of quilting.  It is a pattern of an angel and relatively small so it can be made into a hot pad.  

No matter what you decide to work on, or NOT decide to work on, I hope you have a great day.  Until next time......

Happy Stitching.


Marsha Clark said...


esther said...

Thanks for all the wonderful articles , so interesting .

Bonni said...

I'm glad that you found them interesting. I love the older scissors for hand work and stuff. :)