Most did not have servants to make things easy, but because advances of technology hadn't been developed yet, you just made the best of it.
These little gems are just such treasures of outmoded technology. Shoes, especially the fashionable high buttoned shoes and boots were fastened by a series of little buttons that had to be painstakingly buttoned by hand or used with button hooks. These little buttons were also used on gloves as well. Can you imagine the time...and back breaking work it took for most women just to put their shoes on??? Sheesh!!! I'm glad I was born in the 20th century rather than the 19th century! They measure between .25 inch in diameter and 3/8 inch in diameter.
Shoe buttons were made of many materials and had metal shanks. The better off financially you were, the more shoes you had to match your outfits. We acquired a button collection which includes hundreds of victorian shoe buttons which we will be listing in the next few months. I get bored working on the same sort of thing for too long! There are many different colors and styles....quite a fun collection.
Today (as then) shoe buttons can be used to create jewelry, decorate period clothing or for use by costumers or renactors or just as a curiosity of a bygone age. Cool.
Happy Monday...some clouds today, but in the high 60s. Have a great day. My DH has a birthday tomorrow, but don't know what he wants to do yet but a good day to celebrate someone you love.