A PAIR! Can't seem to get enough of these in, or keep them in supply for all you creative decorator customers of ours - but we're trying! Here's a beauty! An antique hand-held face screen pair - great to use in decorating, flanking a fireplace mantel, perhaps. Popular in the Victorian or Napoleon III era in both England and France, other European Countries and the USA (though most we find have origins in England and France). They were offered to guests and used to shield the face from the harsh heat of a warming fireside during evening visits, and are said to also have been intended to keep the old wax-based make-ups from melting. I'm not sure if it was the melting make-up, or the blotched cheeks they needed to prevent, but these were indispensable items then, and wonderful now. These old screens are all hand made, right down to the elegant old turned wood or ivory or metal handles (this pair have matching original turned wood extra-long handles, as you can see). These were sewn by the lady of the manor or Chateau, (or by their maid servants) and are all little works of art - women's art.
This pair is a bit worn, but unique and appealing - sewn on metal mesh screen. Exquisitely conceived and executed tiny cross stitch and embroidery in silk on screen, and backed in deteriorating silk, they're best suited to frames at this point. Some stitches gone to the years, this set is very early - possible as early as late 1700s. The pair of wood handles have wooden pins holding them to the screen - quite unusual, as these are most often tiny wing-nuts and bolts. An inexpensive pair, and a grand accent. No holes or breaks in handle, but there is damage at the handle/screen joined area, as you can see in images, so they're not suited to use anymore without a bit of inside reinforcement. It will droop slightly where the handle meets the needlepoint. Certainly suitable for framed display, or to sit on a tabletop near your own fireplace, though - VERY pretty.
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Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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