Searching for Silver (38)
Typical examples of new silver and silver plate reproductions with new, faked or confusing marks. Clockwise beginning at upper left corner: figural napkin ring, JM hallmark; forged Tiffany hallmark; figural teapot pill box, REO Sterling; new matchsafe virtually identical to 19th century original by Wallace. Hallmarks for and by: Tussie Mussie, Gorham, sewing, novelties, stamp boxes, pill boxes, chatelaines, .925, SS, Leopard Head Assay Mark, London, England, CME, passant, DAB, Bowles, matchsafe, Unger Brothers,
While browsing around antique shows. I have seen a few tea sets in the Japanesque taste that, from a distance, appeared to be in the style of Tiffany silver. On closer examination, they turned out to be recently made sets manufactured in the electroforming process. Those sets were not stamped with the Tiffany & Co. silver marks. A few months ago, Beverly Bremer from Atlanta contacted me about a water set (Fig. 1) she had purchased, stamped with recognizable Tiffany marks, about whose authenticity she was having serious doubts.
This new shoe pin cushion has lots of details; the new chick pin cushion is about average. Shoe marked .925; chick marked Sterling. There is also part of a country name on the shoe that appears to be Mexico but is not legible. ACRN paid about $10 each wholesale. Note that the shoe has a jump ring; it could also show up as a charm.
A mail order firm is selling the above item as a sterling ice cream server. The catalog copy says it is antique sterling silver. What the catalog doesnt say is that its made from an ordinary butter knife with the blade removed and a stainless steel scoop added. Price $79. Dont be mislead by old hall sterling hallmarks. Wayne Smith, author of Ice Cream Dippers, says there never were any old scoops made like this.
Portland, Oregon silversmith James Mackie's new figural napkin rings are so well made, they are virtually impossible to separate from antique Victorian originals. This article is an update on additional napkin rings Mackie has added since his work was first reported in 1995.
Another group of new figural napkin rings has just appeared in the market. This latest batch is made in India. All are genuine silver plate over brass. The new rings are copies of specific Victorian originals but none have any permanent mark. ACRN paid $50 for the group of four new rings shown in this article.
Most reproduction wholesalers offer look-alike Victorian silver plate. One of the most common new items is a reproduction of a brides basket frame. In this article well compare a typical new frame to the features of typical old originals.
There is another generation of reproduction figural napkin rings in the market. The key feature in identifying this new group is an extremely thin lightweight base with a pressed design (see Figs. 2 3).
Latest Reproductions Identified by New Hallmark - A batch of sterling silver match safes featuring sporting themes is available. The new safes first appeared in antiques markets and fairs in England. They have now been seen in American shows, malls, shops and many online auctions.
An increasing number of silver reproduction match safes are being marked sterling. For the average buyer, this recent change will make the detection of new matchsafes as well as other new silver more difficult.