'La Fumeuse' (The Smoker). Glove etiquette used to suggest that 'a smoker' wearing gloves should use a long cigarette holder. Or wear fingerless gloves.
Lace from Northern Ireland in a delicate trellis pattern
12 bl (button length). This is the length of the glove, in inches, from the hem at the top of the glove to where the thumb meets the wrist.
How to size your gloves
We make our gloves in sizes from 6 to 8½, and for our longer gloves we include an arm fit to ensure the correct sizing.
To ascertain your glove size:
- Pass a tape measure around the widest part of your hand - usually over your knuckles, excluding the thumb.
- The result, in inches, is your glove size - e.g. if your hand measures 7 inches, you are a glove size 7.
- If you are between two sizes, round down to the lower of the two.
Of course, there are times when you might not know the glove size, perhaps if you are buying our gloves as a gift. In that case, we would recommend a size 7 or 7½, because these are the median sizes, and there is a good chance that they will fit. Of course, if your glove doesn't fit perfectly, we are more than happy to exchange it - just contact us, and we will do our best to help. Special size requirements are always available on request.
When perusing Cornelia James for that perfect pair of gloves, you may come across a few unfamiliar words or phrases. Fear not, dear reader, for we are here to teach you our (g)love language. From quirks to points, we’ve got you covered.
Button ('Bouton') Lengths
The button (‘bouton’ in French) length is a unit of measurement for the arm portion or sleeve of the glove. Traditionally, glove sleeves were buttoned and the buttons were spaced at intervals of approximately one inch. Button lengths typically start at two buttons (the wrist), and can climb as far as 21 inches (the underarm).
The Bolton thumb is a more intricate design than the regular ‘round thumb’ that is used on many fabric gloves in that it incorporates a quirk (see below). This allows for increased mobility and flexibility when the glove is made of leather or fabrics that are not lightweight. All our sueded cotton gloves have a Bolton thumb.
Quirk or ‘querk’
A small, triangular or diamond shaped piece of material attached to the bottom crease of a fourchette in the 'vee' of the fingers. Quirks allow for extra finger room, as well as mobility. With modern fabrics and supple leather, the quirk is not much used.
Fourchette, ‘fork’ or ‘forge’
A fourchette (French for ‘fork’) are strips of material running between the fingers and holding the back and palm portions of the glove together. There are usually three fourchettes per glove, though some fabric gloves use a singular fourchette for the entire hand.
An 'inseam' glove is a glove which has been made inside out so that, when the glove is turned right side out, the stitching is concealed inside the glove. This ensures a smooth appearance and sharp finish on gloves ranging from cotton to silk.
A small, approximately three-inch opening at the inner wrist which allows for easy removal of the wearer's hand from the glove. The hand remains attached and may be tucked inside the sleeve of the glove for dining or an exchange of rings. The Mousquetaire is sealed with dainty buttons or bows. An elegant, versatile touch.
The v-shaped, vertical stitching on the back of the hand of a leather or suede glove. This feature was, traditionally, a means of allowing greater mobility for the hand in a heavy leather glove. Today points are more of a design detail than a practical necessity.
A v-shaped cut-out on the inside wrist of the glove. Vents are useful on gloves made of thicker materials such as leather, and provide a bit of extra space and ease when slipping the glove off and on.
A thin strip of material, folded over and sewn around the rough edge of the glove’s wrist line. The welt is an alternative to a standard hem, which is also intended to conceal the cut edge of the material.
Sophie in the wild
The hub of our glovemaking operation is a small, flint walled building that was built some 150 years ago to house dairy cows. All around us are pastures. A mile to the south, the green hills of the South Downs separate us from the salt seas of the English Channel.
It takes a lot to make a good pair of gloves. Great fabrics, selected with great care from mills large and small, skill and people with a passion for making things just right.
Almost everything we make is made to order. So that the person who is making your gloves knows exactly what you want in terms of glove size, style and dimensions. They will also know your name and you will know theirs because, when they’ve finished your gloves and they’re completely happy with them, they will sign the tag to say so.
Our box, like our gloves, is built to last. For us, it's about the product, not the packaging, but when we designed our box we made sure it was beautiful and timeless.