Pastimes for Regency Women - Part II

Pen Work

Pen Work was very popular with ladies during this era. Pictures, drawn by hand on wood using pen and ink.

This particular picture is of a ladies work box, where she would have kept her sewing supplies, her pens and ink, paints, and it is decorated with pen work. The item at the V & A to show this pastime was a wooden fan.

Here is another box. This one looks more of the home made variety don't you think?

It was very popular during our era and there was a very strong Chinese influence to much of it.


Knotting is the foremother of tatting. In doing a bit of internet research on the subject I came across the Tatting Ring. And since I Tat,I will be joining up. The internet is a wonderful place. Tatting does not seem to have taken off until about 1840, so too late for our period, but knotting, which was done with both silk and linen thread was produced prolifically.

This is a knotting shuttle. Some of them that survive are extremely exotic and expensive items, because it was something that wealthy ladies did. This example is tortoiseshell and silver.

For knotting, a fairly thick thread would be wound on to the large open-ended shuttle, about 4" to 6" long, and then the needleworker would make special knots at intervals thus producing a thread with a texture, rather like a string of beads or French knots by the yard.

Later she would couch the knotted thread on to fabric, laying it down in a design of flowers and leaves or scrolls.

Miles of knotting must have been produced as it was used on large scale household furnishings such as chair covers, bedspreads and curtains. The picture is an example of the finished work. The knotted length of string is now attached to the fabric. So now you can imagine what our Regency bottoms were parked upon.

I have a couple more pastimes to bring to you next time, then we will be off on our travels around England again.

Until then, Happy Rambles.