Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Lladro Rising Up From The Ground


Founded in 1953 by three brothers, Juan, José and Vicente Lladró, in the village of Almassera near Valencia, Spain. LLadro began making vases and jugs and in 1956 they started producing sculptures.
The manufacturing  and glazing ingredients are kept under tight guard. However, the process is fully on view for tour groups at their City of Porcelain in Spain.
Every Lladro creation begins with an artistic inspiration. The sculptor makes the first sketch of the new figure in clay, which is approved by the Creativity Committee, including one member from the Lladró family. The sketch, in clay, is reproduced in plaster to provide the first mold. This becomes the definitive mold for the hard paste porcelain figurine. A mid-sized figurine may need between 15 and 20 molds.  Up to 300 molds are used for complex pieces. The fragments coming from these molds are joined by liquid porcelain paste to obtain an exact reproduction of the original model.
The decoration process starts with the sculptor’s instructions. The surface of the piece is carved with delicate motifs that will give it its final appearance. It is at this point that the face on the sculpture gets its expression and the tiniest details are delicately crafted. In addition, the figurine is painted and if it requires a glossy finish is later covered with a coat of varnish. This process gives that crystalline look that is so characteristic of Lladro. Each flower is fully made, petal by petal, following a very delicate process in order to obtain unique, unrepeatable creations. No detail is too small and the final product is one to be cherished.

Our Lladro pieces reflect that attention and each one is is truly a labor of love that rises up from the ground. and all of them have flowers even our little European Boy, just look behind him. see items 23-27

              In 2007, Juan Lladró, took over ownership of the company together with his daughters Rosa and Ángeles, President and Vice-President of Lladró S.A. and the LLadro City of Porcelain.

Happy Bidding!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Coalport's IndianTree since 1801


Coalport China, was founded in 1795 by John Rose (1772-1841). It was the first such factory in Coalbrookdale, Shropshire, England.
The Indian Tree design featured in our auction (see item 7) was first created in 1801. It was one of the most popular designs ever made by the company.
Despite it’s name, it was based on Chinese rather than Indian prototypes.  The pattern includes the crooked branch of a tree and a partial landscape with exotic flowers and leaves. Green, blue, pink, and orange were the favored colors used in the design.
Rose was always working to improve the processes of his china and in 1820 he received the gold medal of The Society of Arts for his feldspar porcelain and an improved, lead-free glaze, with which the enamel colours fused in firing.
About 1810-1825 his pieces were marked with the name Coalport in various forms. Later pieces also had the name John Rose in the mark.
The crown mark has been used with variations since 1881. The date 1750 is printed in some marks, but it is not the date the factory started. Some pieces are listed as Indian Tree. Our Coalport was probably manufactured in the 1920’s.
The original manufacturing building is now a Youth Hostel, cafe, artists studios and a handmade arts & crafts shop. Production later moved across the canal to the buildings which now house the Coalport China Museum.

Happy Bidding!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Stunning Siam Sterling


My great Grandfather was working for Chrysler in India and my great Grandmother started my Siam jewelry collecting with a pair of beautiful oval earrings and a fan brooch.  The more I look at each piece, the more I realized, I have truly enjoyed the fine details of my Siam sterling silver jewelry collection and am eager to find more. Hooray for our current auction with two stunning pieces.

Siam, a country that changed it’s name to “Thailand” in 1939, has a long tradition of fine metal and silver works. The silver work of Siamese and Thai jewelry is special. Siamese silver jewelry found today is mostly “niello” or “nielloware” style, created by carving out areas of the silver and baking a sulfur metals powder in the carved out areas.

The technique involves carving a particular character or pattern into the silver, leaving the figure raised by carving out the "background". Then the niello inlay is filled in the "background".  After being baked in an open fire, the alloy hardens. It then is sanded smooth and buffed. Finally, a silver artisan adds minute details by hand.  Filigree was often used for additional ornamentation as it is with our bracelet. Nielloware is classified as only being black and silver colored. Other colored jewelry originating during this time uses a different technique and is not considered niello. You may have seen similar pieces with a white or red background.

Many of the characters shown in nielloware are characters originally found in the Hindu legend Ramayana.The Thai version is called Ramakien. Important Thai cultural symbols were also frequently used. Erawan, the king of the Elephants is featured on the brooch.
The bracelet in our auction has Mekkala, the goddess of lightning on several of the bracelet panels, and Ramasoon, the god of thunder are on the other panels.  Mekkala is the most common character found on Siam silver jewelry and incorrectly called a Thai dancing girl.
Collecting Siam Silver jewelry is a growing hobby with many jewelry enthusiasts, we hope you will agree our Siam Sterling is stunning.

Happy Bidding!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Plates for Princeton


This auction we are able to take a trip down the hallowed halls of an Ivy League School thanks to Wedgwood and entrepreneurial fundraisers in 1930 who wanted to be true to their school. Princeton University is a private Ivy League research university in Princeton, New Jersey. The proceeds of the original sales of these plates were used to publish The Princeton War Record.


Our featured item for this blog are the Plates of Princeton. We have eight of the original set of twelve plates.  Each has a different scene of the campus.  Each one is beautiful in Blue and White Stafforshire with an identical band of decorative flowers and leaves around each rim. Each is stamped and marked Wedgwood. The most popular of the set and most costly today seems to be The University Chapel see item 24.


Wedgwood issued its first set of College Plates in 1927, 12 views of Harvard University in blue.  For their plates, the Men at Harvard chose a Fruit and Flower border that had been used on Harvard dining hall china c.1840.

The following year, a set of twelve plates was issued for Saint Paul's Preparatory School in Concord, New Hampshire, many of whose graduates go on to college at Harvard.  A border featuring Oak leaves, acorns and squirrels was chosen to reflect the rural nature of this boys' school.  

By 1930 these plates had proved so popular that most of the prestigious colleges were having them made by Wedgwood, each college choosing it’s own decorative rim design. I think my favorite is the Stony Brook Bridge see item 22.

Here is the original advertisement found in a Princeton
Commencement program from the 1930s.


What a wonderful gift for the Princeton Graduate or any lover of Blue and White Transferware.  What is your favorite? Be sure to let us know.

Happy Bidding!

Monday, April 7, 2014

You've Gotta Have Faith!


You’ve gotta have faith!  That has been great advice handed down through the ages. Not Faith the George Michael’s hit song from the Eighties with it’s catchy tune. Not Faith Hill.  I am talking about the Embracing Faith (TM) Bracelet in our current auction.

Embracing Faith (TM) Bracelet is a beautiful Solid Sterling Silver bracelet designed by a beautiful woman to be a symbol of unity and peace throughout the world.  The former Icelandic model Brynja Sverrisdottir turned jewelry designer in 1999.  Her line Embracing Faith now includes a ring and necklace matching our bracelet.  When beginning her jewelry business,  her thought turned to identifying 20 world religious symbols. Her statement design attracted attention immediately.


Her famous clients include Patty Pravo, Donna Karan and David Beckham. Her bracelet has served as a symbol of hope and courage to those facing tragedies. You can see the widespread influence on her Facebook page. Even her own advertising campaign agrees with our premise.

19 symbols are designed in raised relief in two rows with a large peace sign uniting the bracelet. There is a heavy silver pin that keeps the bracelet joined with a safety chain.

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The names of the symbols are engraved on the back. Even the beautiful black leather original packaging is a work of art. The Embracing Faith Booklet explaining the Peace Sign’s history as a unifier of Faith, the purpose of the bracelet is also included. We have not been able to find another one for sale at this time. Limited edition 495/1000.  We believe this to be very rare and expensive.


Here is your chance to embrace faith - a wonderful tribute to world peace and a beautiful bracelet to treasure.

Happy Bidding!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The Everyday Miracle


With Love to the Everyday Miracle" by Sister Corita Kent is a 1976 sérigraphie sur papier that we are extremely fortunate to have in our current auction Item 65.  It is signed by the artist.

Sister Corita gained international fame for her vibrant serigraphs during the 1960s and 1970s. A Sister of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, she ran the Art Department at Immaculate Heart College from 1964 until 1968 when she left the Order and moved to Boston. Corita’s art reflects her spirituality, her commitment to social justice, her hope for peace and her delight in “the world that takes place all around us.” Her works are quite famous and collectible.  Another of her major works you might know is the 1985 Love Stamp. She used a similar theme for a gas tank in Boston.

Her works combined her incredible graphic artistry with quotes from the Bible and favorite authors. She  borrowing phrases and used popular culture, such as song lyrics and advertising slogans, as raw material for her bursts of text and color. Her work is still fresh and meaningful today.

After she died of cancer in 1986, the Corita Art Center was formed to  preserve and promote Corita’s art, teaching and spirit of love, peace and social justice. The Corita Art Center maintains an archive of Corita's work and ephemera and facilitates exhibitions of Corita's work all over the world.

Current Exhibitions of her work are being shown in the Galerie Allen, Paris - March 12-April 19, 2014, “but there is only one thing that has power” and in Circle Culture Gallery Berlin, Germany - February 22- May 5, 2014 “Sister Corita - Let the Sun Shine in - A Retrospective.”

Her works sell from hundreds to thousands of dollars.

May we use her art as our inspiration to share her love for the everyday miracle.

Happy Bidding!