A Sampling of Fanciful Utility

As I anxiously await seeing what the first readers of Fanciful Utility: Victorian Sewing Cases & Needle-books create, I would like to share with you a sampling of pieces I made. Each of these can be made with the directions and templates found in Fanciful Utility.

This shell shaped needle-book is one of my favorite shapes to work with. Shell and shell shaped needle-books appear frequently in nineteenth century magazines and guide books.

This bell shaped needle-book shows the effect a variated silk can add to a piece.


These cotton rolled sewing cases are those popularly recognized in Civil War reenacting as “Housewives” or “Huswifes”. These little cases can hold a great deal.

The same case can be done in silk as well. Rolled cases were also often made with leather, oiled silk or painted canvas exteriors fo men.

This structured sewing case is made of silks and wools. The central box of the case can easily hold thread, scissors, thimbles and other sewing notions.

This case, another personal favorite style, has a place for just about everything. The looks are almost endless depending on the combination of materials you use.

Published in: on October 22, 2012 at 2:00 pm  Comments (2)  

2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. These are really beautiful. Are the books or directions available?

  2. Thank you.
    Yes, Fanciful Utility is available directly from my publisher:

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