c1840 silk brocade emery powder pouch

Emery powder was (and still is!) used to keep needles smooth and sharp– it’s the stuff in the little strawberry attached to the classic tomato pincushion. This emery (the filled objects are also named after the abrasive powdered rock) is made of a gorgeous silk brocade that dates from around 1840.

This little pouch measures about 1-3/4″ high by 1-1/4″ at the bottom.It’s in excellent condition and doesn’t appear to have ever been used. It’s well stuffed and quite heavy. The twisted silk cord closure looks to be an early 20th century replacement.