On display

This item is on display at Melbourne Museum

Melbourne Museum

Similar items over time

Sewing Box - Wooden, circa 1938 Object Reg. No: HT 7514

Made for Kath Davis by her boyfriend (who had given her her original glory box), around 1938. Kath Davis kept the box in her glory box, and kept all her sewing tools and materials in it. She has used it as a sewing box all her life.

Kath Davis began collecting items for her glory box when she started work at 17, living with her parents in Traralgon, and had competed her collection by around 1940.
Wooden sewing box with hinged lid
Statement Of Significance:
Glory boxes represented a significant rite of passage for many women growing up before, during and after World War Two. They provide a material symbol through which can be explored themes of artistry, sexuality, economy and cultural maintenance. Of particular interest is how glory boxes can be used to track the growing consumer culture after World War Two and how there was a shift from the hand made to the mass produced. The traditions cross time and cultures.

Kath Davis's box is significant for the strength of its documented story, and for its completeness in terms of survival of both the box and its collection.
Acquisition Information:
Donation from Ms Kath Davis, 2005
Discipline: History
Dimensions: 11.65 cm (Height), 25.35 cm (Width), 37.80 cm (Length)
Dimension Comment: Measurements of box closed.

More information

Tagged with: glory boxes, sewing
Themes this item is part of: Kath Davis' Glory Box 1930s-1940s, Domestic & Community Life Collection
On Display at: Melbourne Museum
Primary Classification: ART & CRAFT
Secondary Classification: Sewing
Tertiary Classification: sewing kits
User: Ms Kath Davis, Traralgon, Latrobe Valley, Gippsland, Victoria, Australia, circa 1938
References: Oral history interview, 2003 (disc and abbreviated transcript); references in 'The Glory Box: Origins, Symbols and Experiences', 1996 (masters thesis) and in 'The Glory Box: Marriage, Migration and Material Culture in Australia, 1930-1960' (phd thesis in progress) - all produced by Moya McFadzean

Add your comment

  • Museum Victoria does not provide valuations, for more information please visit the valuation infosheet
  • Please note that Museum Victoria staff will not normally respond to comments posted on our website.


This item is part of the following themes:

Similar items

Yes No