Smiths second auction of 2023 is considerably smaller than the first but there has been no shortage on quality and the thousand or so items on offer includes a fine selection of antiques and an interesting range of collectables.
A local deceased estate has provided a large number of fine traditional antiques such as a fabulous French porcelain and ormolu clock garniture which would not be out of place in any stately home.
The same consignment also provided some valuable antique oriental ceramics and a selection of very saleable paintings.
A pair of early 18th century oil on panel portraits of gentleman in suits of armour are estimated at £400 to £600 but may well provide a surprise result on the day.
An attractive Victorian watercolour of a young man with a racquet who appears to be trying his luck with an aloof girl seated on a bench is by Walter Langley.
If that is a bit too chocolate boxy then another by Alfred E Emslie offers a sensitive and interesting portrait of young woman in an interior setting which might appeal more.
Both artists are very well known and these pictures seem very reasonably priced at just £300/£500 each.
As usual most of the highlights of the sale value wise are in the jewellery section, including a stunning 2.3ct diamond solitaire ring estimated at £7000/£9000.
Another very attractive item is a lovely pale blue Ceylon sapphire and diamond ring estimated at £3,500 to £4,500.
With Valentine’s Day just a breath away it might be worth viewing some of the other rings in the online catalogue.
A modern diamond engagement ring estimated at £1000/£1500 comes with an insurance certificate for £3,800 - proving that you can buy so much more with your pennies at auction rather than on the high street.
A huge selection of beautiful costume and other jewellery is also available, with 9ct gold rings starting at just £30 to £50 and a range of diamond and coloured stone rings in the mid hundreds.
A selection of vintage items provided an amusing diversion for the staff who have set up a fun retro display area featuring a Scandinavian leather recliner with Danish and G Plan furniture and an arrangement of accessories such as a huge 1960’s plaster Beagle, a stylish 1960’s hat & coat stand, and a wire work magazine rack filled with Elvis records.
The furniture section includes a lovely pair of Victorian leather upholstered library tub chairs which should prove very popular as well as a French vitrine display cabinet and an Arts & Crafts peg jointed oak bookcase.
A large Victorian house clearance in Abergavenny provided a few monumental items of furniture such as a huge four section Heals Victorian breakfront wardrobe and a pretty pair of Edwardian settees. Whilst a farmhouse in Wales supplied a large Victorian carved mahogany mirror back sideboard as well as a range of Border Fine Arts sculptures.
The militaria and collectables sections are extensive with the usual selection of quirky and interesting items such as a carved clockwork figure of Charlie Chaplin which whistles a tune and moves it’s head when wound.
Estimated at £200/£300 Charlie has such a loud and convincing whistle Smiths are hoping to upload a video to the online catalogue, as it really needs to be seen working to be appreciated.
Other items which are likely to be snapped up by online buyers include an Arts & Crafts Newlyn copper dish embossed with a fish and a Liberty’s Art Nouveau pewter pin dish – both estimated at £100/£150.
A 1950’s enamel advertising sign for cattle feed has a local flavour as it is for a little known Gloucester company called Foster Bros – it is sure to appeal to enthusiasts and leave it’s cautious £80/£120 estimate far behind.
The ceramics section also has a number of interesting highlights including a fine 19th Meissen figure of a patisserie street vendor, two early 19th century Derby figures and two rather attractive Moorcroft vases which are always popular.
Although Doulton figures are generally not selling well, Smiths have three rare and early figures including one called ‘In Grandma’s Day’ which is very rare indeed and could possibly make four figures.
Smiths’ sale is on February 16th & 17th at 10am with viewing on the two days prior 10am-5pm and on the morning of the sale.
The fully illustrated catalogue is available online at www.smithsnewentauctions.co.uk .
Entries for future sales are invited by appointment – please telephone 01531 821776.