Friday, September 27, 2013
Handmade “Gimp” Purse with Plastic Handles and Pull. 1940s. No maker tag. Beautifully constructed purse made of (crocheted?) heavy brown rayon (?) cording. Metal zipper, Lined in shiny brown fabric. Padded inside with cardboard to keep its shape. Twisted early plastic handles. Round early plastic pull with hand-painted flowers and leaves.
I’ve seen these referred to as “gimp” purses, but never knew why, so I did a bit of research. Unfortunately, my research isn’t all that thorough. Seems “gimp”—as happens over time with certain words (in my “other” life, I’m a professional freelance writer)— may have become something different than its original meaning. From what I can gather, this has to with the type or texture of material used. For instance, I’ve seen “Corde” bags referred to as “gimp,” but Cordes are a different weave than this bag. If you have any info about the origins of “gimp,” (in terms of purses and not Pulp Fiction) drop me a note at info(at)vintagepursegallery(dot)com.
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Plastic Covered Purse with Boats. 1960s. Maker: Soure Bag New York. Very well-constructed quilted purse featuring a sail boat—or perhaps (somewhat disproportionate) tall ships—scene. The people in it appear to be circa 16th century, but it’s hard to tell. The bag has three sections: two outer pockets that expand in something of an accordion style, and an inner section that clasps shut. There is decorative gold stitching on some of the design, and the whole thing is covered in plastic. Soft, faux leather handles. Gold lame trim. Lined in grosgrain or similar fabric. Inner stretchy pocket. Four goldtone feet.
Bonus pic! I have another one that’s very similar, but without a maker tag. There is, however, a glue spot where the tag used to be. Hmmm…
Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Classic Leather Handbag. 1960s. Maker: DeLiso Debs by Lennox. Wonderful dark caramel-colored, very well-made leather purse. Unusual trapezoid (?) shape. Closure consists of intentionally stiff side hinges, and has to be pried open, then snaps shut. Decorative hexagonal brass piece at the top. Inner pocket. Includes mirror and plastic comb with the Lennox Bags imprint.
I found this in a local “junque”/antiques/collectibles store, which is pretty much a huge warehouse. I knew it was special when I felt around for the purse, which was hidden under some scarves and other clothing. Still, I was surprised to see the DeLiso Debs label. As far as I knew, DeLiso made shoes. Lovely vintage fashionista Dina, from MomoDeluxeVintage, knew they made purses and commented on my Facebook page that she once had a barrel-shaped DeLiso Debs handbag in the same color as mine.
I also only knew Lennox as an air conditioning company, but you can see a number of vintage Lennox bags for sale online. (I know. I’m ridiculous. But maybe they’re members of the same Lennox family! Purses… air conditioning… always good to diversify.)
Bonus pic! DeLiso Lucite heels with original box. I no longer have these beauties, as I gave them to a very stylish friend (with tiny feet!) who wears them much better than I.
Monday, September 2, 2013
SPECIAL POST! Vintage Purse Post Card. 1910s-1920s. Maker: E.H. Condon. This is a post card from the teens or twenties, soliciting agents to sell 13 ½” x 11 ½” bags, because “Every Woman Needs a Utility Bag.” Just 88 cents! E.H. Condon was also a wholesaler of rugs.
I’ve started to collect vintage purse ephemera, including ads, cards and photos. They’re definitely a lot easier to store than vintage purses!
Bonus! Here’s the Google maps link to the building at 12 Pearl Street in Boston that used to house the E.H. Condon company. Check out the amazing architecture.