Etsy Shop

Antique Gillott’s Display Case

Hello everyone. I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted but WOW so much going on, right?

Well, as far as my shop Old Raven on Etsy is concerned I’ve been working in my craft room but just busy making replacements for my top sellers that did very well this Holiday Season. But that’s pretty much over now and I can start focusing on listing the huge stock of Vintage and Antique items I’ve been collecting as well as plenty of ‘new’ needlework kits ’cause these things are HOT right now. I think it’s because we all have a little extra home time these days and we’re looking for something to keep our minds and hands occupied and, if you haven’t tried it, needlework is just the thing!

Old Raven on Etsy

So check out my shop and the Needlework Supplies category and see the large selection of kits I currently have ready to ship straight to your door.

But today I want to show you something I’m a bit crazy over:

This is an Antique Gillott’s Pen Display Case. If you follow my blog much you’ll know that Joseph Gillott pens, nibs, boxes and on and on are my thing and my shop has (I humbly submit) the largest selection of Antique Gillott nibs available. But this…well, I didn’t think I would ever be able to add one of these to my stock!

Back in the 1800’s everyone wrote with dip pens and the nibs (the little pointy bit of metal on the end which were actually called the pen) was easily worn out and needed to be replaced frequently. So a display case or counter dispenser such as this one could be found in pretty much every stationary shop.

This particular case was meant to feature the “Drawing Pens” in particular. It’s six sections would have been full of Gillott nibs that were especially designed for that purpose. Though I’ve spent untold hours researching Antique nibs, Gillott’s in the main, I’ve never come close to a real count of how many different varieties and styles of nibs he made but it was certainly well over one hundred! And millions of those were shipped to America on a regular basis.

This wonderful case was handmade of solid oak with brass hinges and nails. Even some of the original paper labels have survived. The lid is glass and in excellent condition, I can’t imagine what the odds are for that to have made it through without a crack or chip.

And the Gillott sign is in spectacular condition mainly because it’s been ‘back painted’. Which means the paint has been applied on the reverse side of the glass so no matter how many times this has been wiped down or rubbed on – the paint never is actually touched so this sign looks as good today as it was when it was made 100 plus years ago.

I realized though as I was photographing this that it would look best ‘stocked’ as it was intended. I started to add simply the metal nibs when I thought how great some of my beautiful and colorful Antique nib boxes might look in here.

What a dummy…of course – they just fit. The full gross boxes (holding 144 nibs) fit in the lower sections and the quarter gross boxes fit in the top. I’m sure the store owner would just open a new box, toss the lid and set the bottom section full of nibs right into each nest, replacing with a full new box as needed.

But for me – I love displaying my lovely nib boxes behind the glass – tops included of course. This incredibly rare counter display has already worked it’s way into my heart and it’s going to be a serious wrench to let this go when it sells because I LOVE this amazing bit of calligraphic history.

Antique Gillott’s Display Case

Thank you for joining me here today. I’ll be putting up another post soon that will cover (mainly by photos) all the new stock I’ve been listing lately.

Till then…please stay safe. – Kriss

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