Today I'd like to show you a "whimsy" from the Victorian era. This is a boot-shaped, heavily beaded pincushion that I purchased last summer. I've bought and sold similar items like this, sometimes in the form of wall plaques that might hold letters or matches, maybe with the date on them (I recall one from 19o8), or little pillow shaped-pincushions with the similar heavy three dimensional beading.
You can see how much the fabric on the front has faded by viewing the back of the item:
These souvenir whimsies were made by Native American tribes such as the Iroquois around the mid nineteenth century to early twentieth century. They were selling for a pretty penny when I first started by antique business back in 1999. An item like this boot example would have sold for over $100. Now I think I would charge about $65 for it here in Michigan.
For other examples, zip over to Ebay. Just type in "Iroquois beaded" in the search box, and see what pops up!