Saturday, May 10, 2008

The Workbasket........a la 1855

Several of my dear readers in bloglandia have asked about shoes recently. Shoes are always, and have always, been favorites amongst us women....don't ask me why! Tomorrow being Mother's Day here in America, I thought it fitting to share with you a pattern for a lovely little pretty Watch Case, courtesy of page 553 of the June, 1855 issue of Godey's Lady's Book.

As you can see, no pattern is really needed, these are so simple to contrive! There are not even any instructions given in the Lady's Book, just the illustrations you see above. These were very popular thru the 19th century, this particular little shoe is intended to hold a lady's pocket watch when not in use, but they are very charming holding anything really~ from little dried or paper flowers, to real ones picked out of your flow'r bed. You could also add a bit of stuffing and a little silk covering, and have a very cute pin keep. What a perfect little 'needful' you could whip up for a cherished Mother's Day gift tomorrow! I made this one up today in about an hour~

Mine is made of silk in my two most favorite colors~ blue & brown together. You could make it up in a SNAP if you just wanted to use pretty paper instead of fabric.

What you will need~
snippet of fabric for sole & vamp
little ribbon scraps for trim
thread & needle

1. So you may start by drawing you out a shoe shape. I used the one in the book, but you could draw your shoe with an even pointier toe, or a stubby flat one. First draw the sole shape, as if looking at the bottom of your shoe.

2. Next, draw out the shape of the vamp~ which, as you can see by the illustration, is the same shape of the sole, but widened a bit~ the wider you make the vamp, the larger/deeper the little pocket will be on your shoe(where you would put your foot into)

3. Assembly~ If making entirely of paper, just glue your vamp to the sole around the edges~ takes about 2 seconds! If you are making of fabric, I prefer and think it easier to decorate/trim the vamp first, before attaching it to the shoe sole. You want to bring the edges of the vamp over the sole, and fold over to the BACK~ and glue it just around the edges. Once this is done, then I take a scrap of paper, cut the same size & shape of the sole, and glue this on the back, hiding the edges of the vamp & making it look nice & tidy.

4. Add a little string or wire hanger from the top, add what pretty trims to your heartes' desire, and voi~la! finito!

Have fun~ and Have a Happy Mother's Day!


Christine LeFever said...

OMG! That is so darling! Thank you, generous, sweet, Rachael. I'm going to make some shoes!!!


Lana said...

Thank you Rachael! Yours is so delicate and beautiful!

......Thimblefolk.......Barb McNamara said...

What a lovely shoe and how sweet of you to share.........have a Happy Mother's Day!!!!


Suzanne said...

Thank you Rachael, and what a sweet shoe you made! Hope you have a Happy Mother's Day today!

fiddlestixstudios said...

How nice of you,Rachael,for sharing how to make one of these watch cases!I've always admired them.The one that you have made is gorgeous!