Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Storefront Basket Purse. 1960s. Maker: Caro-Nan. I’ve always wanted a basket purse by Caro-Nan, and I picked up this one last weekend at a swap meet in Long Beach, California. It's woven wicker with a wooden top and handle, stained a rich brown; plus an antique-finish goldtone metal latch. It features a painted-on town with storefronts with the words “Museum,” “Pastry,” “Boutique,” “Photos” and more. I’ve seen quite a few Caro-Nans with real store names written in to match real towns across the U.S., making them very collectible for those who want hometown memorabilia. Some have “titles” on the underside of the wooden lid in addition to the Caro-Nan signature. Many of them have different signers, indicating that Caro-Nan employed a variety of artists to make their basket bags, which also have golf, bird, tennis, sailing and other themes. This bag has a red quilted lining and a penny glued to the top for luck. I think I was pretty lucky to stumble across this one, which is in great shape.

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