Gallery of Needlework Tools

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                                                                       #8014                                                                                          

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Mother of Pearl Chatelaine - This exquisite gilt and mother of pearl chatelaine is both rare and beautiful.  It consists of  a central etui holding multiple tools and two side cases that are now empty.  The gilt tools in the etui include scissors, snuff spoon, bodkin/earspoon, tweezers, nail file, pencil case (with the tiny original pencil) and an ivory aide memoire. One of the two side cases would have held a thimble while the other one was probably a patch box. A patch was the little black beauty mark that 18th century ladies wore on their faces.   The chatelaine also features a buckle on the back of the top medallian so that it could be worn over a belt or ribbon at the waist.  This stunning chatelaine is circa 1730-1740.

The mother of pearl is etched with graceful swirls and flourishes. The etching on the gilt is both ornate and elegant. It's simply impossible to describe how stunningly beautiful this chatelain is, and the pictures don't do it justice. A similar chatelaine is pictured in three different places in the wonderful book entitled Chatelaines by Nerylla Taunton and Genevieve Cummins. That one is pictured in Colour Plates 15 & 187 as well as on the cover of the book. And the book mentions a similar mother of pearl chatelaine that can be viewed in the Jewellery Gallery of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, England. 

The chatelaine itself is in very good condition. The tools are all in good condition. The ivory aide memoire will occaisionally slide down a bit in the inside of the case, but if you are careful when you push it into the case, it sits up just fine. It's also not difficult to retrieve it with a pair of tweezers.                                                                                                                                                                                            $2875.00               

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  #8002                         

Gold Needlecase - 

Decorated with scrolls and florals, this lovely 18kt. gold needlecase is probably French in origin.  In the 19th century, the gold being used in France was almost always 18kt. This beautiful needlecase measures 2 1/2" in length. The overall look is one of delicate  elegance. 
 

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Because needles were very highly valued at the time, it was important for a needlecase to have a nice tight fit. And generally, the longer the inside connection, the higher the quality of the needlecase.  This one has both a snug fit and a nice long connection. There are no visible dents, dings or other issues with the condition of the piece.                                                                                                                                                        $265.00

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  #8010                         

Silk Sewing Roll -

The outside of this silk sewing roll features the very ornate script initials "DL".  This sewing kit is "said to have been sent by a mother to her son in the Navy" possibly during the Boar War.  Inside it has everything he would have needed to keep his uniform sharp. There are many black and brown buttons threaded onto a black ribbon along with a black safety pin. There is a lovely tufted pincushion with five little buttonhole stitch loops stitched to it, and pins in the edges. And there are three wool needle book pages edged in a buttonhole stitch.  The inside of the sewing roll is edged in a herringbone stitch.  It measures 5 1/2" x 20 3/4".

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Overall, the sewing roll is in very good condition.  There are some losses to the herringbone stitch edging on the inside of the roll and the three wool pages are showing a few tiny holes, but the sewing roll is surprisingly intact. Generally textiles, especially silks deterio- rate fairly quickly, but this roll is showing very few losses. The sewing roll is circa 1880.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     SOLD

                                                                       #8016                                                                                          

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Tortoise Tea Caddy - Most of the 19th century tea caddies that you see today are the more common double tea caddies.  This one is the smaller single tea caddy. While it may not be as impressive in size as its larger cousin, it is decidedly more rare and therefore more desireable.  This lovely and fairly rare tea caddy is made of tortoise shell with an ivory edging on the inside and the usual silver lining.  The caddy has a wonderful shape with graceful curves on each of the four sides.  It also still has its original lock and key.

The key does still work, although sometimes you have to apply a bit of pressure to the top of the box to make the key work.  There are four bun feet which look quite nice but are possibly not original.  There are two small cracks in the tortoise, each about an inch long. One is located on the back top and the other is just below the lock.  Neither one affects the appearance of the caddy very much.  There is a bit of expected wear to the silver lining.  This beautiful little tea caddy measures  4" x 3" x 3 3/4" high.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                $1350.00               

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#8012

Silver Scissors Case -  Bearing the hallmark for Daniel Pettifer, Birmingham, England 1849, this stunning little scissors case features beauti- fully engraved ornate scrolls and an empty cartouche.  The scrolls and flourishes fill both sides of the case and even the edges have a delicate engraved pattern. But what makes this scissors case quite special is it's size. It measures just 3" in length and 1 1/4" at its widest point.  That is tiny for a scissors case which makes this one very rare.  The inside of the case is lined in a red fabric. 

There is one very small dent just to the right of the cartouche and the inside fabric lining is showing a bit of wear. This scissors case is otherwise in very nice condition.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                $495.00

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  #8006                         

Figural Needlecase -

This stunning mother of pearl needlecase is one of those very special pieces that you never expect to see. They are so very, very rare. The carving is beautifully detailed to the point that the collar around the dog's neck is clearly visible, as are his facial features and the grain of the fur around his shoulders. This needlecase is a beautiful work of art.  
 

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There are however, some issues to the condition of this wonderful needlecase.  On one side, there is a crack that runs from the back of his ear diagonally down to his belly area (where the needlecase naturally separates).  There is also a crack on the inside connection of the two pieces. Both damaged areas look solid and strong.  The first picture shows the crack behind his ear and the second picture shows the crack on the inside. He can of course, easily be dis- played on his undamaged side. 

                                                                           $650.00

     #8013 - Gilt Etui

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This incredible gilt etui is quite rare                                                         

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for several reasons. First the shape is both unusual and very beautiful.  It tapers in at the sides in an elegant curve that gives it a very sleek bea- uty. It also has a carnelian wax seal at the bottom of the case which is exceptionally rare.  I have never even heard of a seal on a case of this type. This one is carved with Cupid pouring water over a flaming heart.

And then there are the tools inside the case.  When you open the top of the case, you find the expected scissors, bodkin and penknife. The bodkin is gold and the scissors have gold fingerholes. The gilt penkife is ornately etched and very beautiful. These are what you whould expect to find in a lovely high end etui of this kind.

But then you move to the bottom of the case to find its hidden treasure. First, as mentioned you see the beautiful carnelian seal.  But when you unscrew the seal you find a gorgeous gilt thimble inside.  When you unscrew the thimble you find a stack of gilt reels.  These are the type of reels that you would expect to find in a silver compendium.  I've never heard of having them in this type of etui. This is stunningly rare. An etui with this lovely shape, a carnelian seal and these rare tools is simply a very, very special etui.                                                   .   

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                                                                                                                              This stunning etui is circa 1760.  All of the tools are original to the etui and there are no tools missing.  The etui and its tools are in excellent condition with the exception of the scissors which are a bit tarnished.                                                                                     $2950.00

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