Monday, January 24, 2011

Baby It's Cold Outside


As the temperature in Shelburne hovers around -10 degrees Farenheit, I started to wonder what amazing cold-weather clothes we have in our collection.

Searching through our database, I came across these fabulous carriage boots from the late 19th century.

Women's Carriage Boots

Made of velvet in a green and gold honeycomb pattern, the brown fur edging was sure to keep the wearer warm and fashionable. Plus, they have a quilted pink silk lining.

While these boots would probably not be practical for trudging through the snow, I wish I had a classy pair of boots like these for rides around town!

Friday, January 14, 2011

From Drab to Fab: A Razor Room Redo

Shelburne Museum is busy preparing for the upcoming season! Not only are we creating some new and fascinating exhibits, but we are also adding a little glamour to our permanent exhibition spaces.

You might remember the Razor Room from previous visits to the museum. This small space off the back of the Apothecary Shop is home to over 700 razors --the majority of which were purchased from Henry T. Lummus in 1958. Barber's poles, lotion bottles, razor straps, and shaving mugs also deck the walls.

The Razor Room was beginning to show some wear and tear as the old red felt slowly turned orange. Kory Rogers, associate curator, decided he wanted to give the space a "facelift."

From Drab...

...To Fab!

With the help of Collections Management and the Buildings department, Rogers turned his vision of a red, white, and blue, barber's pole-inspired, Razor Room into a reality.

Collections Management Fellow Kelsey Adams shows off the makeover.

Make sure to check out the Razor Room in the upcoming 2011 season. Shelburne Museum is open from May 15-October 30.


Co-Collections Management Fellow Monica and I arrived here in June and started photographing and labeling objects in the museum's collection. We've sorted through trade signs, folk art and equipment used to make maple syrup. (I'm positive we'll be blogging about some of those projects in the near future.)

Right now, however, I'm currently thinking back to my work on the scrimshaw collection in August. I also recently heard that one of the newest food trends for 2011 is pie--all different types. Seriously! Cupcakes were the popular food of the past few years, but now that it's a NEW year we might turning to a NEW food trend, and that thought leads me straight back to the museum's collection. Here's a little sample that I've picked out for today:

So...what is it?

37.1-28: Scrimshaw Jagging Wheel

Scrimshaw itself is a pretty fascinating art form: the term refers to artistic and utilitarian carvings made by whalers when they were on long trips at sea. Whalers usually created scrimshaw with whale teeth or bone. Sometimes the carvings were just decorative, and other times they could actually be used for something, like this particular example. This photo shows a completely hand-carved pie crimper, or "jagging wheel," made from whale bone. The fluted edges of the wheel made decorative cuts in pie dough or pastry. It's just like a modern pastry cutter, only WAY more elaborate and stylish. Very trendy, right?

We're all about forging ahead at Shelburne Museum. So, let's hear it for 2011, scrimshaw, and pie.