A rare silver and green enamel annular brooch designed by Alexander Ritchie, the famous Iona silversmith. The brooch has a Gaelic inscription "A h-uile latha sona dhuit", translated "May all your days be happy". These brooches are traditional wedding presents to celebrate a marriage. The Alexander Ritchie website (see our links page) shows 2 similar brooches, one in blue and the other in red enamel, both are described as rare, they do not show a green enamel example. Ritchie began to use the Birmingham assay office in 1931, and he had close links to the Birmingham firm of Darby & Sons, who made items for him. After Ritchie's death in 1941, some of his original moulds were used by Darby until the 1950's, this is one of these (see Ritchie website). The hallmarks are small but visible, the pin is also hallmarked.
Beautiful, reversible blue enamel pendant and choker, designed by Bjorn Sigurd Ostern for David Andersen. The pendant is reversible, and looks remarkably different when worn the different ways. It hangs very well, and is most striking when worn. The choker is original, and is also silver. Ostern was the chief designer for Andersen between 1961 and 1985. The pendant is clearly hallmarked, David-Andersen, Norway Sterling 925S, INV.B.S.O., and the choker is also hallmarked Andersen and 925S.
A lovely antique silver and enamel vesta case, with a circular dog enamel, we guess a border collie (assistance welcome, thanks!). The vesta is quite small, rectangular in shape, and is engraved with scrolling foliage, it also has a silver suspension ring, which is also hallmarked. The hallmarks are small but clear, in the usual position on the rim of the vesta case.
A lovely sterling silver and enamel cigarette case, with an oval enamel plaque depicting racing dogs (we assume greyhounds). The picture has 3 dogs, white, black and brown, with leather muzzles and a red bib. The case is excellent quality, and a pleasing weight, quite heavy in the hand, the interior is gilded. The hallmarks are clear on both lid and base.
A lovely enamel silver cigarette case with a bespectacled golfer swinging a wood, with flag visible behind him. The enamel is very good quality, well painted with lots of detail. The interior is gilt, and both sides of the box are hallmarked with clear marks. Blanckensee & Son was established in 1826, and by the turn of the century they had a large export trade and London showrooms. In the Jewellers exhibition of 1913, Blanckensee had "two of the prettiest windows in the exhibition", which included enamel cigarette cases (Culme, Directory of Silversmiths 1838 - 1914).
A fabulous silver and enamel advertising cigarette case, featuring the famous English cricketer W.G. Grace. The case is rectangular, and is beautifully engraved with scrolling foliage, the quality is excellent. The interior is gilded, and has 2 elaborately pierced and engraved arms, both with hinges. The oval enamel plaque features Grace walking down the pavilion steps out to bat, carrying his bat, in striped MCC (Marylebone Cricket Club) hat, and the words "Like Grace" across his chest. Spectators can be seen in the background, the colours are superb. Both lid, base and 2 arms are clearly hallmarked, the makers mark A&J.Z is clear on both arms but worn on the case. The image is a very faithful copy of a Colman's Mustard advertising poster, which reads "Colman's Mustard, Like Grace, Heads the Field (see picture), circa 1895. This is a historic poster and image, as it represents the first time a sportsman had been used to advertise a general product. Colman's mustard was founded in 1814, and is one of the old...
A fabulous quality Royal Fusiliers City of London Regimental sweetheart brooch, with 77 diamonds set in Platinum and 9 carat gold. The badge consists of a Fused (or smoking) Grenade, above a Tudor rose enclosed by Royal Garter, with motto "Honi Soit Qui Mal Y Pense", translated "evil to him who evil thinks", surmounted by Royal crown. The grenade has 63 diamonds, the rose has 11 diamonds, gold lettering surrounded by blue enamel, and the crown has 3 diamonds and red enamel. The pin, clasp and hinge are all solid 9 carat gold, the diamonds are set in platinum. The brooch is hallmarked "9Ct" for 9 carat gold, and "PLAT" for platinum. Platinum usage in high end quality jewellery only commenced at the turn of the 20th century during Edwardian times, it's usage had died out by World War II due to expense, so we can date this brooch to either the Boer War or World War I. The Royal Fusilier (or 7th Regiment of Foot) regiment dates back to 1685, and has seen service in the American War of Independance, Napoleonic War...
A beautiful set of 6 art deco gilded sterling silver and enamel coffee spoons, with seal top finials. The gilding is a deep yellow colour, which provides a lovely contrast to the enamel. The back of the spoon bowls are beautifully decorated with fan shaped guilloche enamel, in 6 different bold colours (green, red, yellow, purple and light and dark blue). Guilloche enamel is a technique where a precise pattern is engraved on the silver base using a rose engine lathe, also called engine turning. The hallmarks on all 6 spoons are clear, including makers mark SLd for William Suckling Ltd, who worked between 1922 and 1955.
A lovely antique silver and enamel vesta case, with an oval enamel plaque depicting a Beefeater (Yeoman Warder) of the Tower of London. The Beefeater is wearing Tudor State Dress, the colours are vibrant and the detail is good. The vesta case is rectangular, decorated with scrolling foliage, it has a safety suspension loop attached to the lid. The interior is gilded, this is a good quality case. The hallmarks are clear, including sword and wheatsheaves town mark for Chester. Charles Lyster & Son used the Chester assay office between 1899 and 1902, then switched to Spencer Street, Birmingham between 1903 and 1911 (perhaps linked to a change in location). The Yeoman Warders, commonly called Beefeaters, are the ceremonial guardians of the Tower of London. They were established in 1485 as Royal Guards, the Beefeater name is thought to derive from the large ration of beef they were issued daily in court. They only wear the Tudor State Dress depicted on Royal occasions.