Glorious Antique Treen Knitting Sheaths

Hand knitting was very important in the 18thand 19thcentury particularly in Wales, Northern England, Highlands and Shetland where it provided a major and important source of income. Hand knitted stockings alone from Swaledale and Wensleydale in Yorkshire in the 1820’s was worth £40,000/ year (equivalent to 360 million today) In places like Dentdale and Ingleborough in the N E of England everyone knitted, women men and children as young as 3 years. Children were put to bed in the evenings and then families would gather at neighbours houses around the fire and would knit whilst they sung songs or told stories often in poor light. The knitters of Dent acquired a reputation for their knitting. T

Three Dated Antique Treen Nutcrackers

Three English 18th century antique treen lever nutcrackers. The one on the lhs is the earliest and is dated 1760 to the inside of the handle and the letters W and M. Note also the chip carved detail to the top, even around the top of the vertical handle. The middle one has chip carved decoration all over the outside. It has the initials S P and the date 1791 to the handle.. The antique nutcracker on the rhs has scratch carving to the outside of the handles, initials JS and the date 1773. Note how the number 3 has had to be squashed in as not enough room was left.

A Collection of Antique Treen Snuff Shoe Boxes

These small antique snuff boxes in the shape of shoes are a collectors field in their own right, Many different styles, woods and sizes exist. Traditionally shoes are associated with luck and love going back to the bible, the throwing of old foot wear after the bride and groom, tying shoes to the back of the wedding car and silver shoes on wedding cakes. Many snuff shoes must have been given as love tokens or wedding presents as heart decorations either in the form of brass hearts, brass pique work or inlaid hearts in bone, ivory or contrasting woods can be found . Sometimes even two shoes combined with one lid are seen occasionally with a motto. Pairs of snuff shoes exist with one initial

The Humble Antique Treen Straw Splitter

The making of straw hats goes back to the 14th century. What started as a cottage industry developed into a large scale industry in the 19th century. Often using cheap child labour to produce the straw plaits, from the age of 4 years old. Straw prior to the 1800’s was laboriously cut by hand with knives, it was a slow and unreliable process. Straw splitters changed all this, they were invented possibly by the prisoner of wars in Britain, who used a lot of straw for their marquetry work. The first straw splitters were bone with wooden handles, but by 1815 a paddle shaped straw splitter had been invented ( See image 1 an antique treen straw cutter). This often had several sizes of fins to pr

Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Search By Tags
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
We first became involved in Antique Treen and furniture some twenty five years ago and since then a passion for Treen, small wooden snuff boxes and decorative wooden items has developed into Opus Antiques.

This web site shows only a  small selection of our current stock for sale, if you are looking for something you don't see, please contact us.


We are also interested in buying Antique Treen items. As well as using our Contact page, you can also email or telephone us on 07941 285532


The word Treen is derived from the word tree and is a term used to describe wooden household objects, all turned from one piece of wood e.g. a bowl, plate, gingerbread mould, and spoons, always having a function.

Nowadays when we talk about Antique Treen it tends to cover all small wooden items including antique snuff boxes, candle stands, spice towers, etc. often made from several pieces of turned wood.


When a piece of wood has been painstakingly turned or carved, handled, polished and loved over a few hundred years old, it can develop a wonderful colour and patina and becomes an irresistible piece of Antique Treen.

  • Instagram
  • Opus Antiques, Devon, UK
  • Opus Antiques, Devon, UK
  • Opus Antiques, Devon, UK

We Accept

Address: Bath, Somerset       Contact Telephone: 07941 285532       Email: