Miser's purses were worn by both men and women, and date to the late 1800's and earl 1900's. Designed to hold coins securely, they were worn either draped over a belt or on a convenient finger ring, and were used by both men and women alike, as a kind of Victorian fanny pack.
This one likely dates to the 1890's or late Victorian period, although they were still used into Edwardian times. A lovely example of the style, it has a metal faceted ring holding 14 long black strands of braided cotton thread, which lead down on either side of the ring to a flapped rectangular crocheted pouch trimmed with looped steel seed beads on the flap and base.
The bag is designed so that the threads run through the top of the pouch and the inside flap, and coins are inserted between the strands. All very secure!
This purse would make a great gift for the Victorian or Edwardian vintage fan, or you could dress up your next flapper costume with a dark and mysterious evening purse of your own!
ERA: 1890s or 1900s
COLOR: Black, silver.
MATERIAL: Cotton, steel.
There is a faint bit of tarnish on the ring.
One of the connecting strings has been tied together.
One short loose thread on one corner of one pouch (could be trimmed).
It does not appear to have been used: the crochet is in excellent condition, the strings are not worn, and beads are shiny and intact.
LABEL: No label.
MEASUREMENTS (APPROXIMATE, LYING FLAT):
Length (total, including fringe): 17 in. (43.1 cm)
Length (each pouch): 3 in. (7.6 cm)
Width (each pouch): 2 1/2 in. (6.4 cm)
Ring (diameter): 3/4 in. (1.9 cm)
Ring (width): 1/4 in. (.635 cm)
Fringe (length): 3/4 in. (1.9 cm)
WEIGHT: 46 g.