My Bags Are Packed…

and ready for my trip to Ireland tomorrow!


But these aren’t the ones I’m taking with me! My travel bags are modern, relatively light  weight, expandable and roll along on four wheels. The suitcases in the photo represent travel luggage from various decades of the previous century. They were picked up at various antique shops, thrift stores and yard sales. I love their grunginess and that I can stack them. More than just dust collectors, they are handy  for storing art supplies and unfinished projects.

One case, however, is just for “decorative purposes”. It is a vanity case  that accompanied a young woman as she emigrated from Italy to New York, more than one hundred years ago. I bought it from her elderly great grandson.

The interior:

Some of the containers, the hairbrush, and comb are made with “French Ivory”:

Some of the containers are glass with sterling silver lids! I think the little box on the right is for jewellery.

There is a little mirror inserted in a pocket on the lid. It is encased in leather and has a tab for hanging, as seen on the back.


In addition to the hairbrush and comb, included are a pocket knife and these two implements:vanity-case-8

Any idea what these were used for?


6 thoughts on “My Bags Are Packed…

  1. Susan Juhlke-Ongaro

    Your mystery implements are called “button hooks” and were used to open and close high button shoes – easing hard round or leather covered buttons through tight leather slits or eyelets. They still make similar ones for arthritics to use, even for shirt buttons. Have a wonderful trip! We’ll look forward to your photos.

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