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  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1842 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Wool on canvas, worked in tent stitch; wood

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mabel H Gillett

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Footstools (very low stools for use with a seat) were in use from at least the 1530s, but were very much a luxury item of furniture for the extra comfort of the user, and often signified wealth and privilege. In royal palaces they were sometimes used as seats for a few influential courtiers, but even this was a mark of royal favour, since most people were required to stand in the presence of the monarch.

A footstool for a child is very unusual indeed, and it is significant that this one is said to be a copy of one presented to Victoria, the Princess Royal (born 1840), the eldest child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Although Victoria and Albert tried in many ways to give their children what was a realistic upbringing in comparison with some royal children, Princess Victoria was in a rather special position. She was not only their first child, but was born at a time when there had been few legitimate and healthy royal children for some years, and was therefore of considerable importance.

Physical description

Child's wooden footstool on four circular feet.
[original description of 1937] Wool on canvas; tent stitch. On a beige field is placed a basket of various coloured flowers, the ground immediately under the basket is green. The border is formed by a scroll pattern in white on blue with outer borders of white on brown.

Place of Origin

England (made)


ca. 1842 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Wool on canvas, worked in tent stitch; wood


Width: 6 in, Length: 6 in, Height: 1¼ in

Object history note

Given to the museum by Miss Mabel H Gillett of London (RF 70/1937). According to the donor the stool was made by her great-grandmother as a copy of one embroidered for Queen Adelaide to be presented to the Princess Royal [Princess Victoria, eldest child of Queen Victoria] ca. 1842

Descriptive line

Child's footstool on four circular feet; uholstered in canvas embroidered in wool to show a basket of mixed flowers; England, ca.1842


Canvas; Wool; Wood


Stitching; Upholstery

Subjects depicted



Children & Childhood; Furniture


Museum of Childhood

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