Vintage Image Sources For Inspiration

As a collage artist, I am an image collector, and in my “other life” I find and provide images for papercraft artists.  I have been doing this for over 10 years and it is one of my passions because I just love old stuff! Many of my clothing and accessories are designed from vintage inspiration. In my travels (looking for vintage images) I often find images related to clothing and accessory designs, and instructions and patterns from the Victorian and Edwardian eras. Below is a sample collage made from one of my , Image Source image collections for Victorian dressmaking.


Victorian Dress Making Clipart, Digital Collage Sheet

I have put some of these together for myself as a reference to hopefully spur my creativity, and I’m sharing them here so maybe others will be inspired as well, if anyone ever finds my blog.

I love the fancy work and the dainty designs from the Edwardian and Victorian eras and make many of my bags based on a fine detail I’ve seen on a vintage bag or piece of clothing. Here are some of my early bags I really do like the fancy fiddley work. 







Here is a close-up of the bag in the pop picture


and the back view:



The little white bag in the top right side was made from a vintage table linen and has been dragged around for years, and dyed dusty pink at some point. I think the older it gets the more I like it!





This is made from a nice moss green, appliqued and embroidered  linen table napkin and some secret origami handshake folding that I will probably never be able to recreate again. I folded and sewed and turned it right side out and was surprised and a little disapointed at first. Now everytime I see it and / or use it I think…wow I should make more of those! It has become one of my favorites for stashing jewelry.



This little one is made from the selvage end of a length of unbleached muslin, leftover from making a dress.

So …

I do kind of have an obsession with the little dainty bags and what the Victorians use to call “fancy work”. 

I have gathered a bunch of vintage images for handbags and purses, most are from the Edwardian era  Here are a few I have fixed for reference and hopefully I will be adding more routinely




The images below were from an advertisement for a department store which carried lady’s Fancy Bags and Novelties. 


The Designs are quite cute and could easily be translated to today’s wearables



There will be more as long as I can remember to blog …enjoy!