During the 1870s to 1890s, there were gadgets called skirt lifters also known as dress holders. These devices were hooked onto the skirt waistband or chatelaine (a belt hook from which dangled by chains many useful items such as scissors or thimbles). The end of the chain had a tong like device used to grip the bottom edge of the skirt. I’ve read conflicting accounts as to whether it was used in the front to lift the skirt out of the way when climbing stairs or mounting a wheel or horse, or if it was used towards the back of the skirt for picking up the long fashionable trains, thus keeping them dirt free on outdoor walks.
The larger loops on the chain of the skirt lifter were hooked onto the metal loop on the waistband clip. This would give the wearer a choice as to how much lift was needed.
Also from this time period up to perhaps the early 1900s there were clever little pieces of jewelry called hankie holders. Most of them consisted of a gold ring sized to fit the pinkie, a 2.4 inch chain and a small gold pair of tongs (more often than not found in a seashell or fan shape).
I’ve read stories on the internet that they were used as a means to flirt with Victorian gentleman. Letting the hankie fall to the ground and him being obliged to pick it up.
I’ve also read, which I believe to be far more likely, that they were used in the ballroom, adding an extra flourish to a couples dance.
Finally in use during the 1930-1950s were glove holders. I’ve seen confused people on Ebay selling these as skirt lifters, which they most certainly were not. Ladies would hook the chain around their purse handles or through a button hole and keep their gloves safe while dining.