Roland-designs , Virginie's blog.

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, 16 December 2018

Antique beaded reticule purse

In late October when my husband and I were visiting family in France we took a little detour into an antique shop filled with all the classic assortment of heavy furniture, large painting and overpriced pieces of local history. I love antiques, but do prefer to pick up things at charity shops or flea markets as once an item goes to the antique dealer the prices tend to dim my interest rather quickly – though I have to say my husband has become pretty good at bargaining or getting deals for multiple item purchases.

But, displayed along a lot of small this-and-that there was a pretty little beaded purse in relative good condition with an asking price under what I have seen on Ebay (a good place to get a general idea of the current worth of vintage/antiques – though not always fool proof as the value of those items are affected by popularity and demand; what might be sought out today could be completely forgotten the next year)

So that little reticule purse came home with us, and makes a lovely addition to my collection of 1800’s ladies accessories and needlework items. 

The purse was knitted with each stitch containing a bead, it was then lined with white cloth and edged with a blue silk ribbon. As expected the silk is completely worn and damaged, then there are missing beads, but overall it’s in pretty good condition for its age. The seller said it was made in Germany and while I am not an expert in purses I can imagine it was worked in the middle of the 1800’s as it features typical motifs of the time - An oriental scene, palms, a man and woman with turban and Ottoman costumes. 

Captivated by the tales of A thousand and one night, the Victorians developed a fascination for all things oriental and this is often seen in needlepoint patterns and art of the time period.

Would you like to try making your own beaded purse ? Here is a tutorial I found online, maybe I should test it out myself ? 

More interesting reading here: A history of the beaded bag

Antique beaded bag

Other side

Details - A few glass beads are missing, probably broke and fell off as the string is mostly intact

The silk lining on the top is damaged

Notice how some beads are larger than others, maybe they were made by different companies ?

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