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Posts tagged ‘handbags’

Win Designer Shoes Or Handbag

By , 20 September, 2011, No Comment

This week, you can win your choice of a designer bag or shoes in Shop It To Me’s contest!

To enter:

Step One: Join, if you haven’t already.

Step Two: Tell your friends via email, Twitter, Facebook, etc. using the link here.

(Get an extra entry for tweeting too!)

Shop It To Me Designer Contest

Don’t You Wish They Were Still Just $7.98

By , 16 January, 2011, 1 Comment

A 1955 newspaper advertisement for Whiting Davis mesh bags.

Thirsty For Vintage Lucite Purses?

By , 29 January, 2010, No Comment

How about a Lucite purse from the 50’s in a root beer color? This vintage tortoise shell box purse has brass fixtures and rhinestones — like little glittering ice cubes in the root beer! lol

Vintage Root Beer Colored Lucite Purse With Rhinestones

Vintage Root Beer Colored Lucite Purse With Rhinestones

OMG Vintage Moment Of The Week – For Fashion & Purse Lovers!

By , 15 January, 2010, 2 Comments

This vintage black wool circle skirt by Madalyn Miller features a working purse applique!

Vintage Madalyn Miller Circle Skirt With Purse

Vintage Madalyn Miller Circle Skirt With Purse

The cream wool felt purse with silver and black detail work has a working gold clasp that opens up, making it a functional vintage purse!

Working Felt Purse Applique On Vintage Black Felt Skirt

Working Felt Purse Applique On Vintage Black Felt Skirt

Available for sale at, and photos from, Wear It Again Sam Vintage Clothing.

Madalyn Miller Original Label

Madalyn Miller Original Label

Fun Antique Handbag History & Facts

By , 20 November, 2009, No Comment

The first means of carrying personal items were pockets (not always one sewn into the clothing, but often a flat envelope pocket was belted beneath the skirt) or chatelaines (items on chains fixed to a belt). Then, in the Regency period, when skirts hung straight to the ground and bulk simply would not do, there was the reticule bag.

The reticule, a small drawstring bag still generally attached to belts as chatelaine, became an “indispensible”. The reticule does in fact get it’s name from the French ridicule, which likely has something to do with left-over sentiments regarding the over-indulgent Regency period in which the bags were born — as well as the fancy embroidery, beading and other adornment of the bags themselves.

Reticule Handbag With Asian Theme Embroidery

Reticule Handbag With Asian Theme Embroidery

These bags were small, as ladies really only carried about their handkerchiefs, calling cards, some smelling salts, etc., makeup was not en vogue — and certainly ever applied outside one’s bedroom.

Antique French Beaded Reticule Bag

Antique French Beaded Reticule Bag

When skirts resumed their width, some continued to use reticule bags, but they were not high fashion and you rarely see them in fashion plates until about 1870.

Though made as early as 1820, it wouldn’t be until the late 1880s that the more modern handbags with frames were in popular use. This is when those fabulous hand beaded bags on metal frames with carrying chains were made; followed not long after by the incredible slinky metal mesh handbags.

Women typically made their own bags as well as for friends and family, but quickly making beaded purses became a respectable way for a lady to make money.

As a cottage industry in the United States, women would make the purses at home — mindful to place a single white bead in a particular area of each bog (on both sides), so that the store owner could identify the purse maker and so properly pay her the commission she was due.

Single White Bead On Antique Beaded Handbag

Single White Bead On Antique Beaded Handbag

From Somewhere In Time:

If you don’t find a white bead in a beaded bag, you can assume that either the bag was made solely for the use and enjoyment of its’ maker, or that the bag is from a European country, where even if the bag was made for the tourist market, there was another type of arrangement, perhaps outright purchase, between the beader and the store which sold it.

High Five Friday: Vintage Fashion & Beauty Edition

By , 20 November, 2009, No Comment

High-Five Fridays are easy ways to acknowledge cool articles you’ve read during the week, or a way to give a high-five to a blog or blogger you just like in general by giving them a link — and some readers, we hope! Here are mine for this week:

1 One of Klaudia’s Shoe Fits is finding boots like Brigitte Bardot wore in 1968’s Shalako.

2 At GadaboutMedia, Deanna looks at the shades of history in cosmetic powder colors.

3 At Collectors’ Quest, Val Ubell wishes she had saved her clothing because it’s vintage now — and I agree! (Not only do I wish I had saved more of my own clothing for the return of the 80s, but if Val had saved her own there would be more to buy!)

4 & 5 At Kitsch Slapped, Deanna (how does she write it all?!) shows us vintage cosmetic products used to hide bare legs during wartime rationing — and, while researching vintage mesh purses, she discovered an unusual bit of film history.

When Film & Fashion Really Meshes!

By , 16 November, 2009, 1 Comment

These vintage Whiting & Davis mesh bags with the faces of screen legends enameled on them are really the ultimate in film meeting fashion!

These and other stunning pieces up for auction at Collect.com (starting November 23, 2009 through December 12, 2009), rare vintage mesh bags from the LaMothe Collection; found via Deanna’s Collectors’ Quest post on vintage Mandalian mesh bags.

Whiting & Davis Charlie Chaplin Portrait Mesh Purse

Whiting & Davis Charlie Chaplin Portrait Mesh Purse

Whiting & Davis Enameled Mesh Clark Gable Purse

Whiting & Davis Enameled Mesh Clark Gable Purse

Inheriting Vintage Purses: Keep Or Sell?

By , 12 August, 2009, No Comment

Kim’s still busy sorting through all the vintage purses her grandmother had, trying to decide which to save & which to sell…

Vintage Metallic Mesh & Lucite Handbag

Vintage Metallic Mesh & Lucite Handbag

Such problems! *wink*

One question she asked me was regarding how to decide what to save & what to sell.

That’s a really subjective question…

Not just because beauty is in the eye of the beholder (or the holder of the vintage bag), but because value is a tricky thing.

(Just like those MasterCard ads say. lol)

Certainly those purses which remind Kim of her grandma are “priceless,” as are any purses that Kim may have no memory of — like vintage handbags which are connected to special family occasions (worn to weddings, etc.), and/or those which appear in family photographs. But then again, purses in photographs may have stronger sales appeal because collectors like proof of the vintage item’s age — it’s a form of provenance which adds to its collectibility. So if you want to get the most bucks when the auction gavel bangs… I guess those are the ones to sell.

Rare purses will fetch the biggest bucks too; but then, will you kick yourself later for parting with such a rare purse that you’ll likely never see again?

Ultimately, what it comes down to is what would you like to get for them vs. how much they mean to you — or any other family members (including your children or future children!) who might skin you alive for getting rid of them.

Then again, whatever you keep had better be stored &/or cared for properly…

So the choices may not be so so easy, huh? *wink*

Though for me, it would probably be easy: Keep them all!

The photo shown here is another vintage Lucite purse that Kim would like some help identifying; this one is rather unusual: metallic mesh with tortoiseshell Lucite bottom & handles with rhinestones. Have any ideas? Please comment!

Was My Vintage Lucite Purse Originally A Different Color?

By , 6 August, 2009, No Comment

As promised, more of Kim’s fabulous vintage Lucite purses.

Yellow Pearlized Confetti Vintage Lucite Purse

Yellow Pearlized Confetti Vintage Lucite Purse

This one comes not with an identification question (it has a Myles sticker), but rather Kim has concerns about the vintage handbag’s conditions: Was it originally a different color?

The twist handled confetti Myles looks like a pretty pearlescent color in the pics, but it looks kind of yellow to me in real life – that is why I was wondering if the color sometimes changes in these. If it did – it changed evenly!

While vintage plastics are susceptible to damage from heat, Lucite in particular is more resistant to discoloration & damage from heat. You still should store Lucite items, especially vintage items made of it, away from sunlight and not in places of extreme temperatures, like attics, because it can be damaged.

Damages from heat include fogging, “smearing” or “smudging” of color &/or the transparency, but most often seems to show up as what’s called “sun shattering.” Sun shattering is spider-web or tiny veins of cracks within the Lucite that cannot be felt on the surface — signs of the stress within the Lucite, as opposed to an external force hitting it, causing cracks, scratches, or chips you can feel.

In theory, exposure to extreme heat from being stored in a very hot attic, for example, could result in a uniform changes such as fogging that would change the color of the entire piece. But it’s not very likely… You’d probably still find variations in color &/or transparency — and I’m betting that you’d find other signs of damages, such as sun shattering to indicate the purse has been stressed by such temperature changes.

So, if I was to place a bet on whether this vintage purse had changed color, I’d bet “no.”  But I’m not infallible — what do you other vintage fashionistas have to say?

Open Vintage Myles Lucite Handbag Showing Black Lining

Open Vintage Myles Lucite Handbag Showing Black Lining

Are Cracked Lucite Purses Worthless?

By , 29 July, 2009, 1 Comment

Continuing to help Kim with her vintage Lucite purse problems (oh, those are problems I’d love to have! lol), Kim wanted to know if any of the cracked purses had any value…

Obviously, conditions are a large part of the value of any vintage fashion &/or accessory or collectible in general, so whether there are modest signs of wear and tear or outright damages, the price will be affected negatively in proportion to the flaws. That said, I don’t think you can say that even cracked & chipped purses, or those otherwise deemed unusable, are valueless.

A lot will have to do with the rarity of the purse itself as well as the intentions of the buyer; there are other ways to use such vintage beauties.

Damaged vintage Lucite purses which cannot be repaired may have value as…

* Salvaged parts: Handles, metal hinges, etc. to repair other vintage purses.

* Entry level pieces for collectors: If the purse is fine to look at one one or more sides, beginning collectors or (like me) collectors with small budgets for buying may find a low price fine to pay to have such a pretty purse to display.

* Something else: I’ve seen some topless vintage purses in antique booths holding hankies to purchase; I’ve seen some on counter tops at vintage clothing stores holding pens etc. It made me think of ways to salvage such pretty old handbags myself and use them to hold & display items on my vanity, on my desk, etc.  I suppose very crafty girls could think of hundreds of ways to recycle vintage Lucite purses.  (I’d love to do a post just on this — but first I’ll have to find some cheap damaged old Lucite purses!)

* Nostalgia: Never ever underestimate the sense of nostalgia in vintage things… A damaged old purse may be exactly like grandma’s or one seen in childhood and it may be worth money to own & display it, just to relive &/or retell the stories behind it.

So I don’t think, unless the Lucite is shattered into fragments, that old plastic purses are ever valueless. But naturally, the degree of their damages will lower their prices (and on the internet, with shipping charges, even more so); so adjust your expectations.

But that’s my opinion — please chime in with yours!

Also, dear experts & fans of vintage Lucite handbags, Kim is looking for some help in identifying the maker of this lovely carved caramel colored one. (If you don’t have any suggestions, I’m sure you’ll enjoy just looking at it!)

Can You Identify The Maker?

Can You Identify The Maker?