For sale is this pair of excellent William Hutton & Sons silver and enamel photo frames, their design attributed to Kate Allen. I don’t buy many frames, principally because I prefer form over function – and frames are invariably only designs in two dimensions. These frames are, however rather special, partly because of their classic British art nouveau aesthetic and partly due to their condition.
The frames are wholly original, with original (worn) backs and original unrestored, perfect, enamels. The enamels are of a rich blue purple and dark green hue. The string to hinge the back supports has been renewed only. The original green velvet and green silk can still be seen on the frames interior, set behind glass.
The frames are a true pair and by repute these have been in the same family since acquired in 1902. The frame design is of stylized trees or plants rising to enamel branches or buds. They are both marked for London 1902.
Kate Allen was Hutton’s “other” London studio art nouveau designer alongside Kate Harris. Allen’s work is widely reproduced in the Studio Journals of the period.
Maker: William Hutton & Sons
Designer: Kate Allen (attrib)
Marks: WHSs Ltd, London, “g”
Material: Sterling silver, enamel
Condition: Excellent. Original enamel. See description
Size: 20 cm high, 17.5 cm wide (max)
Art nouveau, Arts and crafts