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Exquisitely Embroiderered Antique Christening Cape

Catalogue: Antiques: Decorative Art: Textiles: Apparel: Pre 1910   item# 1276555

Exquisitely Embroiderered Antique Christening Cape
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$225, reduced from $295.
Free U.S. Shipping & Gift-Wrap if Desired. 

The Ultimate Baby Gift!

Among the most treasured family heirlooms are christening clothes: the long dresses also called robes (although they're lightweight and lacy) and the heavier capes or mantles worn over them to keep the new baby warm enough. This English mantle is a spectacular example of the latter, most likely 19th century Victorian and certainly no later than Edwardian. Although at least 100 years old, it's in marvelous condition -- clear testament to how greatly it was prized.

Christening mantles have been fashioned since the 18th century, when they replaced enormous "bearing cloths" so long and heavy with sumptuous decoration that it took a team of ladies to carry them into the church. The attendants followed along behind the godmother, who held the child wrapped in one end of it. Although that custom ended, the desire to dress the baby like a prince or princess didn't. Parents wanted their precious little ones to make their debuts before God and society in the most lavish mantles they could afford.

This one meets all the traditional criteria for excellence: luxuriously soft white and off-white fabrics, meticulous hand-stitching and beautiful embellishments. Fine embroidery adorns both its large scalloped cape collar and the smaller one at the neck, and two rows of pintucked pleats add dimension all around the voluminous hemline. The cape is almost as lovely inside as out, lined with whiter material including long gores of shimmering shantung silk just inside the front opening. The same lining treatment also appears on the reverse of both collars. I'm not certain what the fabrics other than shantung are -- perhaps heavier silk; they're tightly woven and as soft as a caress. There are a few very faint spots (mainly inside), which any skilled dry cleaner should be able to remove easily, and you may want to add ribbon ties at the throat. Alternatively, you could fasten it with a 'beauty pin' as was done in Victorian times. We have several antique bar pins that would be suitable.

Total length of the garment is 38 inches and it's so wide that I once wore it as an evening cape (to great acclaim), so keep this in mind if you'd like to get some extra use from it between family christenings. It would be stunning also as a wrap for a small bride having a cool-weather wedding.

This is a truly remarkable piece of history, with lots more history to make.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always free on request. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Remarkable 19th c Art Nouveau Heavy Bronze Teapot

Catalogue: Antiques: Decorative Art: Metals: Bronze: Pre 1900   item# 1276451

Remarkable 19th c Art Nouveau Heavy Bronze Teapot
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$545.
Free U.S. Shipping & Gift-Wrap if Desired. 

Antique bronze teapots are quite a rarity, and this one more than most. They were favored in China and Japan, so are generally Asian in design. In fact, I've seen no other example crafted in the European Art Nouveau manner. It may have originated in the East, meant for the export market. On the other hand, it could be French. The French did lovely bronze work and might have incorporated certain details from the East (such as the dragonlike handle and finial in the form of an ancient Oriental melon bead), elaborating these with Art Nouveau scrollwork. The foofy floral base of course is pure European Art Nouveau, as are the winglike shapes decorating the spout.

Condition of this piece is marvelous. There are just a few minor dings difficult to notice. Even the silvered interior -- an extremely uncommon feature -- is sound. A few patches of tarnish remain inside, but the pot's been given a fairly thorough polish. Normally I leave things in as-found condition, but in this case the patina was just too thick for proper appreciation of the gorgeous forms. Size is about 7 inches by 11 inches and provenance is an English estate.

Obviously this is a splendid display item, but it can also be used. Serious tea-drinkers have always loved bronze pots, because the density of the material keeps tea warm far longer than ceramic or any other metal.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Romano British Beads in Anglo Saxon Era Necklace

Catalogue: Estate Jewelry: Strands: Pre AD 1000   item# 1276003

Romano British Beads in Anglo Saxon Era Necklace
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$375, reduced from $475 for the holidays.
Free U.S. Shipping & Gift-Wrap, if Desired. 

The wonder of this spectacular necklace isn't that the beads survived from Britain's age of Roman conquest -- beads often last -- but that their arrangement into this particular form probably dates from relatively soon afterward. I don't know about you, but that much history gives me the shivers (in a good way).

According to an expert, this is exactly the sort of strand created by Britons of the Anglo-Saxon period, as found in some burials circa 600 to 1000. Their necklaces used beads left by the Romans, whose conquest of Britain dated from circa 43 to 410. Even considering that Roman rule was at its height around the year 160, the beads weren't all that old when they left and the Germanic Anglo-Saxons became dominant.

These are very nice beads, indeed - made of colorful ceramic, glass and natural stone. A few appear to be amber. Measuring almost 17 1/4 inches plus clasp, the strand is weighty with these ancient treasures. Its latest restringing probably took place at least a century ago, based on the Victorian fish-hook clasp. That adds even more history, but it wouldn't be a bad idea to restring them soon for security's sake.

The necklace was acquired from a specialist London dealer around 1980 and the prior owner recalls it was expensive even then and without knowledge of its Anglo-Saxon connection. If you've priced Roman beads lately, you know that just a small handful of random finds can easily go for a couple of hundred dollars. That makes our sale price for this very special necklace quite a bargain.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always free on request. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Rare Tudor Bronze Toy Purse Bar - Amazing Pendant

Catalogue: Estate Jewelry: Other Metals: Period: Pre 1700   item# 1276000

Rare Tudor Bronze Toy Purse Bar - Amazing Pendant
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$95
Free U.S. shipping & Gift Wrap if Desired. 

Could the era that gave us Puck - not to mention Henry VIII, history's most self-indulgent monarch since Nero - be less than playful? Not likely! Little princess Liz, herself, might have practiced up to fund colonies and fight armadas with a toy purse on a frame like this one. It was the perfect accessory for a Tudor tot learning to say "MINE" along with "GO TO THE TOWER" - and it's perfect now as a whimsical pendant for an adult or child. Just add a cord or ribbon and tie it on your neck - or wrist - or cellphone, for that matter.

Beautifully detailed (on both sides, as pictured here) and measuring about 2" wide by 5/8" high, this fascinating conversation piece was acquired from a leading English antiquities dealer. It's exceedingly rare. Chances are, you'll never see another like it; indeed, none of us will.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Rare Roman Medallion Pendant with Ruby Glass Stone

Catalogue: Estate Jewelry: Other Metals: Period: Pre AD 1000   item# 1275998

Rare Roman Medallion Pendant with Ruby Glass Stone
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$165
Free U.S. Shipping & Gift-Wrap if Desired. 

In remarkable condition, this stunning ancient pendant is formed in a well-detailed floral shape and set with a ruby red cabochon stone (presumably glass). It's most unusual to find an item of such antiquity still containing a stone, let alone one in splendid condition, but the overlapped edge of the mounting indicates it's original. I can't see any way that it could have been replaced.

The jewel is between 1700 and 2000 years old, made of lead which has developed rich patina and luster through the centuries. It measures 30 mm (nearly 1 1/4")in diameter and comes strung on a lanyard, as it was probably worn originally.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Superb Edwardian or Early Deco Beaded Black Bag

Catalogue: Antiques: Decorative Art: Textiles: Apparel: Pre 1920   item# 1275852

Superb Edwardian or Early Deco Beaded Black Bag
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$185, reduced from $235.
Free U.S. Priority Shipping & Gift-Wrap if Desired. 

This spectacular antique European evening bag has been a star of my personal collection for several decades. I don't open the private vault often, but this bag deserves to go out on the town regularly and, now that I'm back in New Mexico, gala occasions are rare.

Here you see a really marvelous example of Edwardian metalwork -- the loveliest clasps and purse frames in history -- combined with geometric decoration that anticipates Art Deco. The ornately formed and richly gilded filigree on this bag is among the most beautiful I've ever seen, and the beading is truly remarkable. Both the teensy round beads that trace out the edges of the bag and its strap and the much larger square beads lavished all over like starlight appear to be of silver-finished celluloid. The square ones gleam softly like mother-of-pearl, while the smaller ones seem to be glass until you touch them. Also of early plastic is the massive faceted clear stone that crowns the top of the clasp. This bag is an amazing mix of Edwardian elegance and Deco innovation, which could have been fashioned only when the former was phasing out as the latter phased in. A bag this chic almost certainly was made in France.

Its condition is as marvelous as when I acquired in England, since I've used it rarely. You have to search very hard to notice the few bead losses and it takes high magnification to note any surface wear (mainly at the corners of some of the square beads). Even the silk interior is pristine, still equipped with a mirror that was probably original.

Large enough to be useful, the bag measures about 6 inches by 6 3/4 inches and has a 3 3/4-inch carrying strap, the ideal length to suspend from a sash or belt for dancing.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Huge Spectacular Art Deco Fruit Salad Rhinestone Clip

Catalogue: Estate Jewelry: Costume: Rhinestone: Pre 1940   item# 1275825

Huge Spectacular Art Deco Fruit Salad Rhinestone Clip
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$75, reduced from $115.

Free U.S. Shipping & Gift Wrap if Desired. 

Carmen Miranda, eat your heart out! This is a jewel so devastating that you'll be noticed across the room: It's 2 3/4 inches tall, almost as wide and studded with faceted crystals in red, green, amber, blue and violet -- a "fruit salad" of colors, as they used to say.

Besides wearing it in the usual way, clipped to a pocket, lapel, scarf or neckline, it would look great on a ribbon as a choker necklace -- or on a hat or headband -- or on a purse or even at the wrist of a glove. The styling possibilities are just about endless.

It's helpful that the gilded, slightly concave backing - intricately detailed with grapes, leaves and a foo-foo border - is light and easy to wear on any fabric. The material must be wood or early plastic and condition is great, with only age-appropriate wear to the gilding at the outer edges -- and not much of that. All rhinestones are as vividly colorful as on the day there were made and the hinged clip is in perfect working order. Probable dating would be early 1930s and provenance is (bet you guessed it) a California estate.

There's no charge for U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always free on request. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Mid Century Modernist Kinetic Spinner Ring His or Hers

Catalogue: Estate Jewelry: Silver: Modernism: Pre 1970   item# 1275820

Mid Century Modernist Kinetic Spinner Ring His or Hers
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$65, reduced from $95.
Free U.S. Priority Shipping & Gift-Wrap, if Desired. 

This striking mid-century modernist ring may well be one of a kind. It's very much in the "studio silver" tradition. Although unmarked, it's clearly hand-made, being textured by casting and imprecise in form. The width of the shank, for instance, wanders slightly and the stalk-like structure that supports the green sphere flares outward a bit more on one side than the other.

The spinning orb, which also slides from side to side, is about a quarter-inch round and rises about half an inch above the ring's base. It appears to be made of highly polished jade or agate, since the surface isn't abraded as glass would be after this long. The metal tarnishes and polishes like silver, so we can assume considerable silver content, even ifless than sterling grade.

Obviously this is a ring that would look great on either a man or a woman; it's for anyone with a taste for the bold and truly unusual. Current size is about a US 7.5, easily altered up or down by any competent jeweler. Age could be as early as the 1940s or as late as the 1960s, condition is good and provenance is an East Coast estate.

There's no charge for U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Rare Antique Natural Red Branch Coral Bracelet

Catalogue: Estate Jewelry: Strands: Jewels: Pre 1900   item# 1275481

Rare Antique Natural Red Branch Coral Bracelet
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GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$125, reduced from $150. With free U.S. shipping & gift-wrap if desired. 

A pretty match for our extra-long, antique branch coral necklace, this bracelet is also remarkable for the quality of its coral. Almost all recent coral is dyed (and looks it). Sources of good natural coral are just about played out, so it's hard to get without choosing antique, or at least very seriously vintage, items.

Here we have the real thing and a lot of it (129 carats). The bracelet hails from a California estate, but would have originated in Italy, where red coral was harvested in profusion until the early years of the 20th century. This is the type produced mainly around Torre del Greco: lovely red spezzati (coral branches) with a small white vein through the center. At some time long ago, a neutral polish was added for shine; under very high magnification, a few tiny patches of it look whitish from wear at contact points, so we know it has no effect on the coral's color.

Based on the clasp, a sterling swivel hook, the bracelet was restrung around 1950. Changing to a Victorian gilded "beehive" screw clasp or small fish-hook would be well worth doing. Length is about 7.75 inches now, too large for many women, but a significant amount of length would easily be removed with the oversized clasp.

To see the 32-inch, 385-carat coral necklace that goes well (though not perfectly) with this - and a delightful pair of earrings, too - just enter "branch coral" in the search box. If interested in more than one piece, please get in touch and we'll work out special pricing for you.

There's no charge for insured U.S. shipping, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and gift-wrap is always free when desired. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!



Fine Long Necklace of Antique Natural Red Branch Coral

Catalogue: Estate Jewelry: Strands: Jewels: Pre 1900   item# 1275470

Fine Long Necklace of Antique Natural Red Branch Coral
 click for details

GlitzQueen History and Art to Wear
505.205.1404


$395, reduced from $500 for the holidays.
With free U.S. shipping & gift-wrap if desired. 

Spezzati or branch coral, so beloved by the Victorians and Edwardians, is making fashion news again. This is a particularly lush example of the form, beautifully vivid and bristling with branches. It weighs in at an impressive 385 carats and is 33 inches long! To achieve this dramatic scale, we actually combined two shorter 19th century estate strands - retaining this wonderful old barrel clasp in beehive shape, although there's no need to open it. Besides its remarkable size, it's fashioned from the good old Mediterranean stuff, harvested off Italy in the 19th century and earlier. Virtually all newer coral is Japanese and dyed.

You'd have to look a long time for a spezzati necklace as spectacular as this one -- and our price is quite a bargain. Elsewhere online, a necklace of comparable coral quality, but only 21 inches long and about 200 carats in weight is being offered (on sale) at about the same price as s ours.

UPDATE: We've added antique earrings and a bracelet that are a lovely (though not absolutely perfect) match for the necklace. To see those, just enter "branch coral" in the search box. If interested in more than one piece, please let us know and we can work out pricing that's even more special for you.

There's no charge for insured U.S. delivery, with an equivalent discount on international delivery, and beautiful gift-wrap is always free on request. Please e-mail to confirm availability, order or request more photos. Thanks for looking!


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