Monday, February 2, 2015

Ephemeral Beauty: Pruyne's Oil Paste

In the Nineteenth Century, it seems, more so than today, items in the home needed to be protected from drying out and cracking.  Now we spend more time worrying about keeping our skin from drying out and cracking than we do in concern for protecting the tops of our cars.

Click to enlarge.

Products such as Pruyne's Oil Paste were marketed to keep leather items, in particular, supple and useful.

I like this little trade card which has been sitting with its dozens of ephemera brethren in my collection, waiting to see the light of day again.

Really, it's a stock card which a merchant or manufacturer would have ordered to be printed with information pertaining to their wares.

An attractive celadon green makes a suitable background for a spray of morning glories and wheat.  I've always had a fondness for morning glories.  Perhaps it's because the flower reminds me of 1164 Morning Glory Circle, the fictional home in Westport of Darrin and Samantha Stephens and their children, Tabitha and Adam.  Of course, I'm referring to Bewitched.  In reality 1164 Morning Glory Circle is a set on the former Columbia Ranch (now the Warner Ranch) and has about as much substance as this card.

Flitting amongst the arrangement of grain and glories is a rather plump bee who looks quite content.

The white rectangle on this stock card was printed:

Pruyne's Chamion Oil Paste
For Harness, Carriage Tops, Boots
and Shoes.
Norwich Oil Paste Co., Prop'rs

Perhaps at some point in the late 1880s, Endora used Pruyne's Oil Paste to keep her saddle supple.  Oh my stars!

Nonetheless, it's a pretty little card in those stunning late Victorian colors--green, bright salmon, rose and purple--which I love so much.

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