Purse

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ca. 1900-1915

Label: none

Provenance: none

X.2014.058

A heavy linen drawstring bag, decorated with Irish lace insets, and lined with thin white cotton.

Since the late 18th and early 19th century, when rounded, white purses with embroidery or similar designs became fashionable, such bags have been a common sight in historic clothing. This purse, with its machine construction and diagonal Irish lace insets, dates from around 1900-1915.

Inside, the purse has one small patch pocket made from the same cotton the purse is lined with. The drawstring pulls from either side of the bag, and each side is tipped with crocheted, stuffed cotton balls for decoration. The heaviness of the linen and the tightness of the drawstring casing make it difficult to close the bag fully, which may have led to its disuse. This could be why the bag shows so little wear, and why it was preserved.

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The small cotton pocket inside the purse

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Construction of the drawstring channel from the inside

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