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Fabulous small square antique brass needle case, with 4 gilt slots inside for holding needles.

The case was made by Avery, whose pressed gilt brass cases are hugely collectible. On the hinge side is printed REGISTERED FEBRUARY 11 1870. The clasp has the word Alexandra in a decorative scroll. In 1863 princess Alexandra of Denmark had married Edward, eldest son of Queen Victoria. Edward later became Edward VII . He had a colourful career and in 1869/70 the first major scandal broke over his alleged affair with the wife of an MP, Sir Charles Mordaunt. (It reads like a Hollywood script) Anyway, this Avery design, registered in February 1870 and provocatively named Alexandra, may have been produced / purchased as a sign of support for the Queen at that time.

Even without these associations, the case is a charming object. The design of raised brass flowers sits perfectly in the central cartouche. Inside the cover still has the pink flanel linings (now very worn but still there) and the 2 "pages" which contain slots for 4 needle packets, sizes 6, 7, 8 & 9. These are of gilt brass, with further decorative engraving. Overall size is 2" square.

Condition is vintage. I have not tried to clean it but have left as I found it. Originally the outside would probably have been as bright as the inside and you could polish it shinier if so desired. There are some darker patches on the back (see photo 5) and part of the clasp which also has some darker staining - I think this is where the gilt has been rubbed away so probably won't become shiny. Hinges work fine and the clasp is slightly loose but works fine too.

Despite signs of wear and age, still an interesting and desirable piece of sewing ephemera for any collector or enthusiast.

Although mainly a button seller, I often find vintage sewing stuff on my travels, so have set up another section in my shop to offer these items for sale, which I hope you will enjoy.

Antique Victorian brass Avery needle case - vintage sewing notions - "Alexandra"


  • Vintage item from the 1800s
  • Materials: brass, fabric
  • Ships worldwide from United Kingdom
  • Feedback: 1171 reviews
  • Favorited by: 7 people