When is a tea caddy a biscuit box? When it says so on the original water colour design drawing! Originally catalogued by me as a tea caddy this Artificers Guild silver and copper “caddy”, is infact a biscuit box. The original watercolour for this box can be found in the Artificers Guild Archive held at Goldsmiths Hall, Box G, item 2474. It is initialled ES for Edward Spencer and in what is probably his handwriting says “of a size to hold a pound of biscuits”. It is also inscribed “copper bronzed” in keeping with the patina still found on this piece. The watercolour is shown in the images at this link.
It’s fair to say I don’t always agree with the Daily Telegraph but on this occasion their advice is spot on……this is extracted from a full page spread in today’s Telegraph.
This week’s issue of the Antiques Trade Gazette previews BADA, including The Peartree Collection’s very special Ashbee hand mirror for the Guild of Handicraft.
“Those on the look-out for museum-level purchases might also seek Anthony Bernbaum of The Peartree Collection, who offers a Guild of Handicraft silver and enamel hand mirror by Charles Ashbee.
It features striking peacock enamel to the back and is hallmarked for 1903. Until now, the only other known example was in Cheltenham’s Wilson Museum.
The mirror is one of a number of pieces Bernbaum will exhibit by Ashbee and Archibald Knox, whom he describes as “two of the most collectable designers from the Arts & Crafts period around 1900”.”
Anthony Bernbaum, founder of the Peartree Collection, writes about some of the more unusual pieces he is taking to BADA Fair and how he researched them. Click Antique-Collecting-Magazine-Article-March-Edition-2019 to read the article
I am delighted to have arranged for a lovely Ashbee bowl, sold last year to a client, to have been used for filming on the BBC’s new series “The Victorian House of Arts and Crafts”. This four part series can be seen on BBC2 on Fridays. The first episoode is available on BBC iplayer. Not to be missed!!
We will be exhibiting at The BADA Fair from 19th to 26th March, Duke of York Square, Chelsea, London. If you would like a ticket please do get in touch. More details can be found here.
In a matter of months the UK government is likely to introduce legislation that will restrict the sale, import or export of any (silver) item which has, by volume, more than 10% ivory (excludes musical instruments). The detailed legislation is still to be worked out but I have built a simple spreadsheet you can plug in your silver item’s weight and measurements of ivory components to calculate whether the piece meets the likely de minimis rule. If you would like a version please contact me.
In the early 1890’s the Guild of Handicraft exhibited some of their earliest metalwork at a little known exhibition at Armourers’ Hall, home of the Armourers and Brasiers Company in the City of London. I have, finally, found an article on the 1891 exhibition which included a sketch of a door or finger plate the Guild exhibited. This won a competition the Exhibition was hosting to design a finger plate for the Hall and the design was subsequently made up and fitted, where it can still be seen today. The article is in the attached pdf The-Armourers-and-Brasiers-Exhibition-1891. The designer and maker of the finger plate is given in the article as John Williams, with a total of six plates ordered for the Hall in total. Separately, Alan Crawford notes that Hardiman and White both designed prize winning exhibits for Exhibitions at this venue in 1890 and 1892 respectively.