Nikki Vesey Williams – Walnut purse workshop

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We were delighted to welcome two guests (and potential members), Carol and Daphne, to our workshop making walnut purses.

Nikki Vesey Williams brought along many intricately embroidered examples for our inspiration and she expertly guided us through the delicate procedures needed to cover the two halves of the shells. Our choice of fabrics varied, the lighter weight being easier to manipulate and Daphne very effectively used lace from a wedding dress.

After covering and lining the pieces we then added gussets and drawstrings to gather the purse together. We were all surprised to find that the embroidery and embellishment is done at the end. Nikki brought along a good selection of beads, sequins and trimmings for us to use so it will be interesting to see how we decorate our tiny purses at home.


Nikki told us that walnut purses can be dated back to 16/17th century. They were sometimes given as gifts and often contained cloves to mask certain smells of the day. I think ours might contain thimbles or small items of jewellery.

Thank you Nikki for a lovely day.


Thank you Judy J for this report and photos.  Ros

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