The coin purse has outgrown its function in modern fashion. It has undergone radical changes and is steeped in history. For centuries men and women have been using purses and pouches purely for practical purses. A well-preserved, 5300-year-old mummy was discovered in 1991 with a pouch attached to his belt in the Italian Alps containing fungus. The ancient Greeks carried coin purses hidden in their clothing and the Egyptians used bags made of linen and papyrus. By the 15th Century, male aristocrats carried bags made of metal frames. Metal cast frames eventually wore off and purses became more elaborate, made of rich fabrics and detailed embroidery. Drawstring bags grew in popularity by the early 1800s and it seems to be quite popular today. 20th-century bags became modern adopting exotic textiles in the form of velvet, mesh and carved frames. German and Italian bags showcased beads, elaborate castles, exotic landscapes and fair maidens in open umbrella-like skirts. Purses became embroidered in lace and ribbon and adopted Asian theme designs as the love for oriental styles grew. Marie-Antoinette, Queen of France, was known for her revolutionary fashion trends. One of her creations before her death in 1793 after the French Revolution was a silk purse, the size of a cheque book that she embroidered during her imprisonment in the Tower of the Temple.
Marie-Antoinette is still an icon today, inspiring fashion with her trademark. Her face is decorated on iPhone covers, handbags, purses, print media, compact mirrors and cigarette cases.
Shop for a Purse
Felt coin purses are developed by local Nepalese women, working in a female-run felting business based in Kathmandu. Natural materials such as wool, an adaptable fiber is made use of. Felt pressing and stitching are all done by female workers; many families benefit from the proceeds.
The felt coin hummingbird purse is comprised of 100% wool with non-toxic dyes. The purse is beautifully composed with a leaf attached to the zipper. A blue-winged hummingbird reaches out to red fruit on the front of the purse. The felt coin raccoon purse is made of 100% wool and non-toxic dyes. The naughty raccoon clings onto an apple with a ripe red apple hanging from a tree branch in the background. The zipper holds a 3-dimensional felt apple. The baby fox felt purse features a baby fox peeping from a branch. An acorn appears above the fox’s head and the zipper holds an autumn leaf. The felt coin jumbo purse contains a big blue-eared elephant with a multi-colored flower stitched above the elephant’s head. A pink petal dangles from the zipper.
Fruit-inspired felts are powered by Global Groove, a fair trade organization empowering women by supporting female artisans in Thailand and Nepal. Global Groove’s products feature slices of orange, apple and lime. These felt purses are a must-have summer fashion accessory.
The animal-inspired, pug felt clutch is one of Global Groove’s products. The felt clutch is made in the form of an iconic sad, pug face. Fluffy pouch rabbit is in the form of a soft, plush, pink bunny with pink straps attached. The pug clutch is ideal for anyone who adores pugs and the fluffy pouch is ideal for any little girl. A cute Jack Russell with a red ribbon tied around his neck embroidered on a light gray felt purse makes the perfect gift for a little girl to put her coins and toys in. The leather elephant coin purse is a product supplied by Matr Boomie, an Indian fair trade collection that specializes in the harmony of modern and traditional design and empowers female artisans. They have empowered 20,000 artisans throughout India. The elephant-shaped leather purse has a zipper closure with a turquoise tassel attached.
Support Female Entrepreneurs
Female empowerment should be encouraged in all developing countries. Most underdeveloped countries take women for granted and many suffer at the hands of abusive men. This cycle of abuse and destruction must come to an end. Young girls need to be taught entrepreneurial skills to survive in a harsh and cold environment. Starting families and caring for older men should not be an option for young women. Developing strong leadership, communication and social skills should be a priority for young women. By shopping for a purse, you are supporting small female-run businesses and encouraging female empowerment in impoverished countries such as India and Thailand.
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