Made for Kath Davis by her boyfriend (who had given her her original glory box), around 1938. Kath Davis kept the box in her glory box, and kept all her sewing tools and materials in it. She has used it as a sewing box all her life.

Kath Davis began collecting items for her glory box when she started work at 17, living with her parents in Traralgon, and had competed her collection by around 1940.

Physical Description

Wooden sewing box with hinged lid


Glory boxes represented a significant rite of passage for many women growing up before, during and after World War Two. They provide a material symbol through which can be explored themes of artistry, sexuality, economy and cultural maintenance. Of particular interest is how glory boxes can be used to track the growing consumer culture after World War Two and how there was a shift from the hand made to the mass produced. The traditions cross time and cultures.

Kath Davis's box is significant for the strength of its documented story, and for its completeness in terms of survival of both the box and its collection.

More Information

  • Collecting Areas

    Home & Community

  • Acquisition Information

    Donation from Ms Kath Davis, 18/02/2005

  • User

    Ms Kath Davis, Traralgon, Latrobe Valley, Gippsland, Victoria, Australia, circa 1938

  • Classification

    Art & craft, Sewing, Sewing kits

  • Category

    History & Technology

  • Discipline


  • Type of item


  • Object Measurements

    37.8 cm (Length), 25.35 cm (Width), 11.65 cm (Height)
    Measurements of box closed.

  • Maximum dimensions

    380 mm (Length), 254 mm (Width), 118 mm (Height)
    Measurement From Conservation.

  • References

    Oral history interview, 2003 (disc and abbreviated transcript); references in 'The Glory Box: Origins, Symbols and Experiences', 1996 (masters thesis) and in 'The Glory Box: Marriage, Migration and Material Culture in Australia, 1930-1960' (phd thesis in progress) - all produced by Moya McFadzean

  • Keywords

    Glory Boxes, Sewing