1930's - 1940's - 1950's
Beaded Scenes, Carpets, Birds,
Compact Purses &
Elegant Evening Handbags
Petit Point, Fabric
Change Purse &
Mesh & Metal Purses
Hand Mirrors & Sets
Personal & Wardrobe Items
Clothing, Linens, Textiles
Celluloid Albums & Boxes
Around the World
Nippon, Noritake &
Crystal & Glass
Art & Decorative
The Treasure Chest
- Facts and Tips
Rhinestone purses are among the more exciting evening bags to acquire and have
been sought after since the early 1900's. The Art Deco era brought forth
some beauties, some with elaborate Deco clasps. The 1930's would not be
without rhinestone evening bags and the 1940's and 50's produced some of the
most stunning examples. The Oroton bags from Germany and those from
Austria and France are extremely well made, with prong set or bezel set clear
rhinestones and others had iridescent jewel tones as well. The mesh type
background fabrics were attached to both silver and gold metal frames, some of
which had stunning rhinestone embellishments.
*Never* get your rhinestone purse wet. Check prongs for stability after
each use. When a prong lifts, lightly press it back down with your fingernail.
If needed, gently polish the frame with the finest grade steel wool, blowing
away particles as you work, wipe with a damp cloth.
mostly with plain water, glass cleaner or mild soapy water at your discretion, but never spray directly on your
purse. Dab water or spray a little cleaner onto a soft clean cloth, just damp.
Gently rub the stones, try not to snag the prongs and keep the cloth under the
purse, allowing gravity to pull moisture away from the stones, in other words,
keep the purse above the cloth. For hard to get to places, use a damp
Q-tip, squeeze excess wetness.
You can use a soft tooth brush with barely soapy water to keep your purse lining
fresh but keep shaking off excess water from the tooth brush, then blow dry the
lining with cool to warm air, then open air dry for a few hours before storing.
Wrap your purse in white tissue paper and store in an "open" zip lock bag if
desired, allowing your purse to breathe as it is a
vintage textile, needing exposure to air. Keep it in a dry, cooler area
especially if you live in a high humidity climate, out of direct sunlight and
away from heating units is best.
Don't be afraid to use your vintage rhinestone purse, they are so fun to carry.
Occasionally you might drop a stone if you don't check your prongs after using,
so when you are out and about, shop for an old cheap piece of jewelry and buy
something just for the stones, you'll have replacements when needed.
Gently lift the prongs with your finger nail, pop in a new stone that matches
fairly well, press the prongs back down and you'll never notice that the stone
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Rhinestones are a Girl's Best
Friend - The fashionable and historical fascination with the rhinestone purse.