Chatelaine, or Keeper of the Keys
Georgian and Regency Era Accessories
- The word Chatelaine is French and means the keeper of the keys
- Chatelaine” derives from the Latin word for castle
- In Medieval times, the chatelaine was in charge of the day-to-day running of the castle.
1800 Chatelaine and Description. suzilove.com
What did a chatelaine do?
- Most important task was keeper of the keys.
- Also ordered supplies, did bookkeeping, supervised servants, taught castle children, and organized guests.
1800s Chatelaine, Five Piece, of Mother Of Pearl. suzilove.com
What were chatelaines used for?
- Castle keepers needed keys safe, yet easily accessible.
- By 1700′s, a metal jeweled ornament hung from pockets, attached to belts, or by hooks into skirt waistbands
- During 1800′s, women wore large collections of tools hung from chains
- Young girls sewed and did needlework and needed to carry sewing notions eg scissors, thimbles
1800s Mid. Sterling Silver Chatelaine. suzilove.com
- Worn by women of all classes, from workers to nobility
- Varied depending on class and finances.
- Made of silver, brass, steel, leather, or fabric
1804 Chatelaine, English. 18ct Gold Hunter Case. suzilove.com
- During 19th century, fashionable dresses often had no waist and nowhere to hang chatelaines
- Chatelaines became decorative brooches
- Often given as a wedding present from a husband to bride
- Later became fashion accessories