The napkin ring with grey agate is sold.
I am delighted to have this pair of napkin rings by the rare and special silversmith Jack Kirsten Baily (1880-1939). Baily was one of the earliest silversmiths to join Charles Ashbee’s Guild of Handicraft in c 1895, and who then continued with the Guild right up until its dissolution in 1908. Whilst at the Guild he is recorded as working on some of their most important pieces, including perhaps the greatest of all, the “Sporting Cup”, with enamel lid and wirework surround to the body, now with Dallas Museum, see link.
From 1908 Baily continued to work at the Guild’s Sheep Street workshop up until c 1912. According to Alan Crawford’s book on Ashbee, Baily occupied the top floor at Sheep Street, the Hart’s the main floor below with William Marks the floor below that, each seemingly trading as the Guild of Handicraft (dropping Ltd from the mark), but also individually using name marks as appears on these napkin rings.
In 1912 the Harts, as is still the case today, became the central figures of the Guild and Baily left to run his own workshop in nearby Stratford upon Avon. It was noted at a meeting of the Guild of Handicraft on 2 February 1912 that a padlock had been placed on the workshop door of the Guild, as Mr Horwood (estate agent & Custodian of the Guild property) had reason to believe that some of the common workshop tools were being removed to Mr Baily’s new shop at Stratford-on-Avon, and that he had been making an unfair use of the gas in the evenings. Baily registered his own mark JKB at the London assay office in 1912 and I believe that prior to that he must have used his full name as a mark, as for these napkin rings.
These napkin rings are relatively large and of a very good gauge of silver. They are in classic arts and crafts style. Each is set with a different stone that I believe to be lapis (blue) and malachite (green).
Condition is very good, with just the usual scratches to be expected. There is some rubbing to the Bailey mark on the green stone ring, which also has a small chip to that stone (barely visible but identifiable to touch).
Price range: £295 each.
Maker: Jack Kirsten Baily
Designer: Jack Kirsten Baily
Date : 1911
Marks: JKBaily, London, “q”
Material: Sterling silver, stones
Condition: Very good
Size: 5.5 x 4.75 cm diameters, 3.25 cm width,
Weight: 40 grams, 1.4 oz each