Spring Antique Sale Report: 11th March 202
Monday, 22 March, 2021
Our first major sale of the year, the March Spring Antique Sale boasted a catalogue of over 700 lots across a diverse range of sections.
With the country still in lockdown this was an online only sale; with nearly 1,000 bidders registered across online platforms, in the commission book and on the telephone lines. The highlights came thick and fast, with strong performances in every section.
Banksy brings in the bids…
Artworks ranging from the thoroughly modern to the antique and covering every media from print & mixed media through to watercolour, miniatures and oil paintings dominated the early part of the day.
Modern pieces performed well; including Lot 42 – a Banksy ‘Walled off Hotel Box Set’ mixed media lithograph paper with concrete relief comprising an original piece of the graffiti-covered wall that divides Israel and Palestine. Complete with Walled off Hotel invoice, it sold for £1,400 to an online bidder from Staffordshire . Meanwhile, Lot 186, a Lucy Harwood modernist study of kilns in a wooded landscape sold for £1,200 despite the condition report showing a small amount of cracking to the oil between the towers on close inspection.
More traditional art also brough in the bids – Lot 88, a V.B.B. Moorland scene with four stags grazing, signed and dated 1931, saw the hammer fall at £320 against an estimate of £60-80, while Lot 119, a watercolour military study of an officer in a rocky wooded landscaped signed J.Huskins 1844 fetched £200. Other notable paintings included Lot 140, a French school oil on canvas portrait of a young peasant girl by Paul Alexandre Alfred Lefroy, dated 1886, which went for £1,400, and Lot 166 – a 1973 oil on canvas by Maurice Field entitled 'Blackberry Pickers on Hampstead Heath' which sold for £700.
Vintage in vogue…
The popularity of vintage clothing was in evidence once again, with several stand out lots in this section. Lot 236, three vintage equestrian-themed scarves comprising a Celine of Paris silk example; a 1960s Spanische Reitschule Wien silk scarf and a smaller Gucci-style scarf, together with a Versace-style patterned silk scarf, sold for £85.
Lot 250, three vintage wedding dresses of varying styles and periods – including a 1950s dress and together with accessories – sold for £110, while Lot 249, a collection of vintage ladies’ clothing of various styles and periods, including 50s, 60s, 70 and including branded items such as Louis Ferand and Frank Usher, sold for £180. Another selection of seven items of ladies’ vintage clothing, Lot 254 - this time including two Laura Ashley items, a Jean Allen evening dress and Carnegie of London evening dress - saw the hammer fall at £150.
Continuing the clothing theme, a vintage Moss Bros textile reference of Old Boys’, University, Club and Regimental colours -also covering London Hospitals, Indian Army Dominion and Colonial Service, Air Forces & Naval, Cavalry and Yeomanry - sold for £140.
A diverse jewellery section, encompassing costume & vintage alongside antique and modern fine jewellery, saw some strong prices as bidders vied for the top lots.
Lot 351 – two vintage amber bead necklaces, sold for £350 – while Lot 354, a 19thC hallmarked silver locket on an antique link silver chain – went for £190. When it came to rings, Georgian styling stole the show – perhaps in a nod to the hype surrounding Netflix’s Regency bodice-ripper Bridgerton. Lot 374 – a Georgian-type ring set with a central amber stone with a diamond on either side sold for £900, while Lot 375 – an antique Georgian-style ring, set with amethyst type stone and engraved inside the unmarked yellow metal band ‘A gift from a friend’ shattered its £100-200 estimate to achieve £500.
The undoubted star of the jewellery section, however, was an item with local links. Lot 405 – an 18ct white gold diamond-set Stafford knot, set with an estimated 1.25 carats of brilliant cut diamonds, sold for an impressive £1,100.
Standout silverware – and something rather more macabre…
With a decent silver contingent generating good prices across the board, it was tough to pick standout lots – but among the more interesting was Lot 426, a hallmarked silver double-sided table top cigar box (London, 1920) which went for £400.
Others included Lot 427 – an attractive hallmarked silver pierced cake stand with intricate fruit decoration, marked for Sheffield 1932, which sold for £450; and Lot 439 – a hallmarked silver nutmeg grater in the form of an egg, bearing marks for Y & W for Yapp & Woodward Birmingham 1852 (but having later been converted to its present form with a modern grille), which sold for £260.
Alongside pretty pieces of silverware, the metalware section also threw up a highlight in the form of an unusual metal art steel sculpture of a decomposed body. Of forged and steel welded construction with a bronzed finish the unusual piece, measuring just over 1m long, sold for £350 to a bidder from Staffordshire
Bidders raise a glass to fine wines…
It wasn’t just fine art and antiques that featured strongly in this catalogue – fine wines also had a decent showing, with some 47 lots making up the Wine, Whisky & Spirits section.
Highlights here included Lot 469 – a 2015 bottle of Chateau Nenin Grand Vin Pomerol, which fetched £50 and Lot 471 – a bottle 1981 of Chateau Batailley Grand Cru Classe Pauillac, which also went for £50.
Ports and fortified wines also performed strongly with Lot 486 – 3 bottles of Croft 1970 vintage port achieving £150; Lot 490 – a bottle of Taylor’s Quinta de Vargellas 1969 Vintage Port selling for £90; Lot 491 – a bottle of Duo Centenary Celebration Bual Medeira wine, bottled by Cossart, Gordon and Cia LDA Funchal fetching £270 and Lot 495 – a bottle of Camus Extra Elegance Cognac, in presentation box, which went for £190.
Collectable ceramics back on the up…
Given the recent clamour for traditional teaware – often the ‘chintzier’ the better – driven by the South Korean thirst for all things British, it may come as little surprise that Lot 542 – 8 sets decorative teacups and coffee cans with saucers by Royal Worcester, Coalport and others sold for a hefty £170; despite the condition report highlighting several pieces had rubs, cracks, chips and other faults.
Troika is a highly collectable name in pottery – and Lot 548 a blue Troika ‘Coffin’ vase monogrammed to base for Alison Brigden sold for an on-estimate £200. Perhaps more surprisingly, Royal Doulton figurines seem to be coming back into favour with collectors. Examples that sold particularly well in this sale include Lot 560, a Royal Doulton figurine entitled ‘A Victorian Lady’ achieved a winning bid of £230, perhaps thanks to its rare colourway. Lot 561, a Royal Doulton Figurine ‘4 o’ clock’ sold for £240 and Lot 564 – a Royal Doulton flambe prototype depicting a young man and woman, marked to base ‘Property of Royal Doulton, Not Produced for Sale’ fetched £130.
Also hailing from the famous Doulton pottery was Lot 565 – a large Lambeth stoneware political single-handled ewer inscribed ‘Leeds Election 1880’ and with the profile in relief of R HON W E GLADSTONE' and further political inscribed verse. Together with two baluster vases, both from the same election and inscribed 'Herbert J Gladstone Esq - Returned Unoposed'; 'John Barran Esq - 23674 Votes' respectively, the lot achieved £280.
All hail the Mouseman…
In the furniture section, it was the works of enduringly popular furniture maker Robert Thompson – aka The Mouseman – that got bidders’ juices flowing.
Lot 601 – a Robert Thompson of Kilburn Mouseman oak lighter – sold for £260; Lot 603 a ‘Mouseman’ large Oak shallow bowl sold for £420; Lot 604 – a ‘Mouseman’ Burr Oak kidney-shaped cow stool fetched an estimate-shattering £1,200 and Lot 608 – a pair of nutcrakers with mouse on top – sold for £270.
However, it wasn’t all about mice in the saleroom, with Lot 628 providing another of the day’s sleepers – a taxidermy study of a barn owl, realistically perched on a tree stump and presented on an ebonised base under a glass dome, seeing the hammer fall at £350 against an estimate of £60 - £100.
Other interesting lots included Lot 633 - a large vintage wooden handpainted ‘Sailmaker’ sign, depicting a harbour scene with fishermen, figures and boats which went for £350; Lot 637 – a collection of Egyptian Shabti in the form of small blue/green mummiform figures and a selection of stone scarab beetles, which fetched an impressive £480 and Lot 638 – a stunning Georgian Equinoctial universal compass by Dolland of London, complete with fitted case and key, which sold for £850.
Highlights toward the end of the sale included Lot 698 – a sixteen-drawer haberdashery unit with cupboard, which sold for £800; Lot 707 – a pair of cast stone lion garden figures – which achieved £350; and Lot 709 – a pair of 19th Century hand-forged wrought iron gates, which sold for £1,500.
To view all lots along with hammer prices, head to www.cuttlestones.co.uk. We are now accepting consignments for our Summer Antiques Auction – for a free, no obligation valuation please send images to firstname.lastname@example.org