Eda Lord Dixon American

Not on view

This purse exemplifies the remarkable design and technical skills of Eda Lord Dixon, a leading American Arts & Crafts enamellist, silversmith and jeweler. After studying with James Winn, a Chicago jeweler, and Alexander Fisher, the foremost British enamellist, Dixon showed and sold her work through Arts and Crafts exhibitions and societies throughout America, including Boston, Detroit, Chicago and San Diego. Following her marriage in 1909 to Laurence Belmont Dixon, her husband often collaborated with her. The Dixons’ creative engagement with silver and enamel extended to a diverse range of objects, including purse frames like this one. Eda often made the textiles for the bags herself. According to her son Richard, "There were knitted bead bags each with a pair of enameled silver tops and a silver chain. These bags must have sold like the proverbial hotcakes because she was knitting at them furiously and became able to turn out the knitted portion in short order." This purse is an example of one knitted by Dixon. It descended through the family to her granddaughter, the donor. Dixon’s design and photograph albums, sketch books, and ledgers have been digitized courtesy of Shelly and James Dixon and are available through Watson Library’s digital collections. A design for the frame of this purse appears in Dixon’s Green Design Album, p. 97 (#400). For more on Eda Dixon, see http://www.themagazineantiques.com/article/eda-lord-dixon-rediscovered/

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