Category Archives: Antiques
Tea caddies comprise the largest and most complete group within the Sallea collection of boxes. When tea was first used in England, it was taken only in small quantities for medicinal purposes. Yet this single imported commodity was destined to inspire almost two centuries of social ritual and decorative arts.
Once created out of necessity to keep out the cold and damp, carpets eventually came to signify wealth and adorned the buildings of royalty and the rich. Carpet designs tended to reflect the history and culture of the region they were created in. Traditionally these carpets sometimes took many months, even years to create, but now the process is much faster, even with those that are still made by hand.
Sheraton-influenced furniture dates from about 1790-1820. It’s named for the London furniture designer and teacher Thomas Sheraton (1751-1806), who trained as a cabinetmaker, but is known for his written guides, especially his first, The Cabinet-Maker and Upholsterer’s Drawing-Book. His designs and ideas influenced entire generations of furniture-makers, especially in the young U.S., as seen in the works of early American masters such as Duncan Phyfe, Samuel McIntire, and John and Thomas Seymour.
A thimble is a protective shield worn on the finger or thumb generally worn during sewing.
While collecting thimbles became popular in the mid 1800 as a result of the special thimbles that were made for the Great Exhibition held in the Crystal Palace in Hyde Park, London, the earliest known thimble was Roman and found at Pompeii. Made of bronze, it has been dated to the first century AD. A Roman thimble was also found at Verulamium, in the UK. and can be seen in the museum there.
Bisque dolls ,with heads made from unglazed, tinted porcelain, are among the most elaborate and valuable of all collector’s dolls. The finest French bisques, made by leading makers such as Jumeau, Bru, Gaultier and Steiner, were expensive status symbols even when first made, and remained very much the province of pampered children from the most affluent homes.
The earliest French Bisques resembled fashionable ladies and came equipped with wardrobes of elaborate clothes, based on fashion plates of the day.
One important part of appraising a quilt or any textile is accurate dating. Sometimes there is no doubt of the date, because the maker embriodered it onto the quilt or wrote it somewhereon the back in indelible ink. Sometimes a quilt was so obviously designed for a special occasions – such as the 1933 Century of Progress Exposition in Chicago – that its date can be easily ascertained.
Most of the quilts that are available for collecting were made in the 19th and 20th centuries, although it is possible to find an earlier treasure for sale or maybe even in your own attic. However, unless there is a direct connection to the maker, the dating of quilts is not precise science. It is more like a mixture of detective work and educated guessing.
In 1751, the first Worcester Porcelaine factory was founded by a group of 15 men, headed by Dr. John Wall, an eminent physician. Dr. Wall and his partners developed their method for producing porcelain and then persuaded a group of 13 local businessmen to back their discovery with an investment in a new factory at Warmstry House. The secret of porcelain production was to be the property of the shareholders and each agreed to a penalty of 4000 pounds should they disclose knowledge of the secret to anyone. The original partnership deeds are still housed in the Worcester Museum.