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This beautiful British Tea Tray is so very decorative, I just love Victorian beaded embroideries! Trays like this were used when serving afternoon tea, and tea was an everyday affair, so these were hardworking pieces in the English home of the period. Today pieces like this are lovely on a dresser, hung on a wall. or even as a platform for some other treasure - you'll think of something.
I have been contacted by a fellow dealer who tells me that beaded platforms like this were actually used as clock stands in Victorian England. And while I have always thought that beaded wool embroidery was an odd choice for setting down a potentially drippy teapot, I also know that I am often left wondering about various Victorian customs, so I have always accepted the common wisdom here in the US about the original purpose of these beautiful Victorian treasures. This lovely platform certainly would make a grand clock stand if the footprint of your clock fits, but then the possibilities are myriad - set your inner designer free.
The elegant quatrefoil shape is defined by a graceful and deeply carved molding and stands on small bun feet. The bottom was crafted from a solid plank of beautifully grained wood, boxwood I think since the carving is so crisp and the grain quite fine. And the beading is intricate with the roses and flourishes described in subtle ombre tones. The screws have hand cut slots which means this is an early piece. Dates from 1875 or so.
CONDITION is excellent. This tray was used and loved, but remains basically complete and intact with only a few missing beads, but no loose or raveling threads; and there is a small age check at the center of the knot on the bottom. Measures 11" x 21" long and stands about 2" tall.
These old Victorian trays are getting harder and harder to find. It's wonderful to see a great old piece like this which has been used, loved, and cared for. Enjoy!
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Antique 19th C English Tea Tray / Clock Stand / Salver - Victorian Beaded Quatrefoil Trivet - Hand Beaded Platform
$460 USD SOLD
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