A beautiful die-cut and embossed golden scrap sheet featuring assorted images of fruit. Approx size 230 x 310mm.
In 1837, the first year of Queen Victoria's reign, came the invention of the colour printing process known as chromolithography, and scrap manufacturers were quick to apply the new technology to their products. Now brightly coloured and embossed scraps were sold in sheets with the relief stamped out to the approximate shape of the image. These pre-cut scraps were connected by small strips of paper to keep them in place.
The laborious task of cutting out small pictures was thus removed, and sales of scraps began to increase significantly. Collections of scraps were pasted into specially produced albums, together with other decorated paper items such as calling cards, food wrappers and pictures from magazines and catalogues. Scrap collectors would fill the pages of their albums with pictures grouped in themes. Often the pictures would be supplemented by personal notes, lines of poetry or dedications from friends and relatives.
The Victorians delighted in romanticism and sentimentality. Sought-after subjects for scraps included angelic-looking children, fashionably dressed ladies, birds, butterflies, pets, angels and fans. Also popular were military and naval themes and scraps depicting Victorian pastimes such as the circus and outings to the seaside.
Before long, scraps were being pasted into autograph books, diaries and friendship cards, and they were also used to create the most unashamedly romantic Valentines. These cards were often composed from an extravagant array of diverse materials such as paper lace, embossed gold foil, ribbons, lace, fresh flowers and feathers, with the scraps as the main focal point.