Vintage French Sterling Silver Flapper Dance / Compact Purse with Mesh Handle ~ Art Deco Period
The detail on this little dance purse is superb. I don't often buy solid Sterling Silver compact purses and tend to lean toward the Guilloche enamel pieces however this one is special. The purse is highly detailed around all of its edges, front and back. There was black antiquing done in the low laying areas of the hand decorated edge. It looks like black enamel however it was an antiquing process that was popular for making these low laying areas look dark. There is a mesh handle with a hand etched slide that allows you to slip it on your wrist and then tighten it so it will not slip off. There are 2 compartments that open. Inside both compartments are round mirrors. Both are in Excellent condition with no silver loss. Inside the compartments have been gold washed. It is stamped on the inside of the compact with what I believe to be French Hallmarks. There are 2 animals and a letter in the center, all inside of a cartouche. It is also signed Sterling. Under the Sterling mark, the owner had her personal identification number engraved by her jeweler. This was very common for the time period. It was a way of identifying items in case of a theft. The family would use the very same number on all of their important jewelry, flatware, purses or anything of value. There is a space to monogram the purse. Fortunately, it was never monogrammed so the new owner can add her own initials if she wishes. I've saved the best feature of this for last.. The original sterling mesh tassel is still in place! So often these were lost. Collectors search high and low for these little mesh tassels all the time to complete missing pieces off of other compact purses.
The purse is in Pristine Antique condition. There is not a single ding or dent anywhere. Both compartments open and close tightly. This was a very high quality made piece. The purse measures 10 1/8" from the top of the handle to the bottom of the tassel. The purse alone (without the strap or tassel) measures 3 1/2" x 2 1/8". The sweet tassel hangs 1" long. The entire purse, chain and tassel are all tested Sterling Silver. The piece weighs an impressive 56.6 grams, nearly 2 ounces. It is a wonderful and elegant Flapper purse with just enough room for your lipstick and a $100 bill! What else does a girl really need for a night out on the town? Questions are always welcome.
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