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Essential Style: Vintage and Antique Purses

Emma Post Barbour’s New Bead Book  1924Purses have a rich and varied history dating to the medieval period.

Sheet music cover for state song I Love You, California  1913; Words: Francis Bernard Silverwood; Music: Abraham Franklin Frankenstein; James M. Keller Collection; R2015.0714.001

A World of Characters: Advertising Icons from the Warren Dotz Collection

The use of advertising mascots is centuries old, with itinerant peddlers and established merchants occasionally illustrating their carts or shops with colorful characters. The advent of mass production led to a host of brand ambassadors in the early twentieth century that still appear today, including Planters’ Mr.

Turn, Weave, Fire, and Fold: Vessels from the Forrest L. Merrill Collection

“You can put your heart in (vessels). The fact that they’re not utilitarian doesn’t mean they aren’t useful, to the eye or to the heart.”
—Forrest Merrill, “Collecting California”, American Craft magazine, June-July, 2006

Classic Plastics 1870s - 1970s

Imagine the excitement generated by the first man-made plastics. These moldable materials served as substitutes for dwindling supplies of natural plastics and precious materials such as tortoiseshell, horn, shellac, ivory, and even silk. Early plastics enabled manufacturers to introduce a host of affordable new products and allowed for tremendous technological advances.