Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Vintage Clutches

While I have been a bit absent from cyber world these last couple of months my dear friend and wonderful fashion stylist Kelli at A Rendezvous With Style has graciously given me permission to reprint one of her wonderful  articles!   This article pays tribute to a wonderful woman in my friends life and a beautiful collection of family heirlooms that will be cherished for many years to come. 
Thank you Kelli for the wonderful glimpse into your cherished collection!   

Kelli Djulus  A Rendezvous With Style


Vintage Clutches

So many questions, so little time!

Last fall, as my family and I sadly laid my Grandma to rest, my head was swirling with questions. Of course whenever her and I spent time together I would ask her about her life. I always enjoyed looking through the hundreds of photos documenting her wonderful years here on earth and I never turned down an opportunity to ask about her past experiences, her parents, what life what like "back then", how she met my Grandpa and many other questions that I am sure at times were overwhelming for her. Yet, once someone is gone, you realize that there is so much that you didn't know about them or their life, even after 30 years of asking questions and spending time together. I guess I am still coming to terms with the fact that certain experiences, other quiet secrets, are taken to the grave.

While cleaning up the remaining belongings at her home, I couldn't stop myself from wondering why hadn't I ever asked to play dress up with her or even request to see some of her favorite items she had acquired throughout the years, on her many travels around the world. It is unfortunate that I didn't ask more than I did! Alas, the stories behind these vintage beauties are lost forever, however I am keeping my imagination open and my daydreaming vivid! I am sure these hand-beaded clutches lived well and of course always added just the right amount of pizazz to my Grandma's already very stylish wardrobe.

Bullocks, wow! That department store was around when I was young and I had almost completely forgotten it ever existed! Not being allowed in Grandma and Grandpa's room, ever, I had absolutely no idea what I would find inside. Needless to say, I was delighted to uncover 4 gorgeous vintage clutches!


Vintage Clutch #1:
Silver Mesh Whiting & Davis Co. Bags
This clutch could very well date back to the 1920's

Front View ~ The silver mesh is stunning along with the large rhinestone clip

Inside View ~ The tag reads "Mesh Whiting & David Co. Bags Made in U.S.A.
The same information in stamped into the frame of this shining beauty.

I was curious about this bag as well as the company, so I did a little research and this is what I found out about Whiting & David Co.

ith a pedigree that dates back to the jazz age, WHITING & DAVIS handbags are renowned for their sleek and innovative collection. First introduced in 1876, they became world renowned for fashionable metal mesh handbags. In addition, they are also a major supplier of mesh for industrial, architectural, jewelry, scientific and home d├ęcor applications. In 1999, The Inge Christopher Group acquired WHITING & DAVIS handbags. Soon after the acquisition, as they began pioneering new ways to play with the metal mesh, they realized they had acquired an aesthetic gem.

WHITING & DAVIS’ new design team added novelty colors, dramatic new textures, and retro-paint effects to its repertoire, creating exquisite metal mesh handbags. They soon became coveted arm candy by many fashion icons, as well as celebrities. Their bags are used for everything from one’s wedding night to prom and even on the red carpet.

WHITING & DAVIS handbags use their signature metal mesh to create an array of products from cosmetic cases and wallets to sophisticated daytime and evening handbags. Their handbags range from timeless to classic to vintage styles with Art Deco and Victorian influences, to young and contemporary silhouettes. Let your imagination take you away with all of WHITING & DAVIS’ alluring metal mesh handbags. 


Vintage Clutch #2:
No Name
Hand Made in France
Small pearl-like beads & flat metallic beads hand sewn onto ivory silk

Front view ~ I am in love with the attention to detail! It is absolutely exquisite!

Back view ~ I love the "hand slip" rather than wrist strap. I can just imagine it appearing as to float magically in hand.

Inside tag reads "Made in France. Hand-Made"
A vintage clutch after my own {French} heart!

Inside the interior pocket safely rests this clutch's original mirror. It is gorgeously backed in the same silk as the bag's inside lining.


Vintage Clutch #3:
No Name
No Tag
No Idea!

Front view ~ Beautiful hand-sewn detail. I love the sunflower inspired motif! I can definitely see this lovely vintage clutch accompanying me to many weddings in future years.

Back view ~ Again, I love the little hand slip.

Peering inside ~ Even the zipper pull has a vintage motif engraved around it.
Things just aren't made like they used to be!


Vintage clutch #4:
No Name
Hand Made in Hong Kong
Black beading on black silk

Front view ~ The perfect beaded black clutch!
I absolutely adore the shape of this clutch's opening flap. It is larger than the other 3 bags and much "newer"; I am estimating late 1970's - early 1980's.

A peek inside

Black silk lining with small tag. This clutch was certainly purchased when my Grandma & Grandpa traveled to China.


My maternal Grandmother gave me this adorable purse when I was just a few years old. It is paisley velvet with a long pink strap and I remember dragging it around everywhere with me. I have kept it all these years and hope someday my daughter will enjoy playing with it, just as I did. My Grandmother has been gone since 2001, so when I pulled this little purse out while re-organizing my closet the other night, it brought a smile to my face.

The tag reads "Hans och Greta" ~ Hans and Greta

As I continued about in my closet, I enjoyed reliving memories of times spent with my Grandma and my Grandmother. I thank them for their love, their care and their always impeccable, personal style.

Until next time...
Call someone you love, enjoy something passed down to you from another generation and embrace styles from the past that you enjoy!


My Grandma and I enjoying a moment together at my wedding  Digg 


Southern Lady's Vintage said...

I enjoyed reading all about the purses! Lovely picture of you at your wedding!

antiquesgaloregal said...

What a wonderful story! Love the detail on the clutches.

VictorianCobweb said...

So glad that you girls loved Kelli's article. Her Grandma was a gem of a lady, sounds like.

SLV - that isn't me on my wedding day that is Kelli herself!

Gracie's Cottage said...

Lovely bags and special memories! I too feel blessed to have had two Grandmas that I adored. Even though both have been gone for decades, the memories are vivid and precious.

Kara Lennox said...

Love purses! I have a big collection I'm going to be selling because I no longer have the room to display it, and I hate keeping beautiful things in boxes where no one can see them.

Kara (vintagedazzle)

The Antiques Diva™ said...

Excellent article!

Deborah said...

Love these precious and beautiful clutches. What a lovely glimpse into the life of another. I am sure she misses her grandmother, I can see why you would want to repost this. Thanks so much for sharing.

VictorianCobweb said...

Gracies - It's a blessing to have such wonderful memories of our Grands!

Karen - don't forget to make yourself a digital photo album of your collection before selling - that way you will always have something to remember your wonderful collection by.

Diva - Kelli wrote a beautiful tribute to her lovely grandma. I'm honored she gave me permission to share the article and her clutch collection.

Deborah - I love being able to pay tribute to those in our lives that have been important to us. This was an honor.

La Petite Gallery said...

The top one is elegant. Amazing how you can still carry them and still in vouge 1920's Beauty is forever isn't it. yvonne