English Needlework, ca. 1750 (Georgian Period)
Appraised Value: $15,000 - $20,000
IMAGE: 1 of 3
Appraisal Video: (2:46)
Decorative Arts, Rugs & Textiles
Appraiser of Fine Art and Antiques
Szescila Appraisal Service
GUEST: I got them at a garage sale, probably about six or seven years ago. I picked them up just because they said, "Pick me up." I guess it was part of the color, uh, the style, and basically, just... I liked them.
APPRAISER: And when you bought them, did they tell you anything about them?
GUEST: They had no idea what they were.
APPRAISER: No idea at all?
GUEST: They said something that their grandmother had and they didn't want it anymore.
APPRAISER: Well, they're English needlework done during the Georgian period. I would guess somewhere around, uh, 1750-ish, and they have a lot of things going for them. The colors are just wonderful. In one, you have a tortoise and in the other, you've got what appears to be either a porcupine or a hedgehog, and he's caught a snake. And the spandrels that go around the edges of the reserve-- you'll notice they're snakes. The imagery of this would have to really be researched. I'm not really certain why they've put together a tortoise and a porcupine, and what the significance of the snakes are.
APPRAISER: But I can tell you that the quality of the workmanship on these is really, extremely good. The background is almost all done in a pettipoint stitch, and there are other forms of needlepoint in here, too, but mixed with all this needlepoint background, we have a lot of embroidery going on. In this area, on the tortoise, and right here beside it, we've got a lot of French knots and a lot of other things like satin stitches and other forms of embroidery. And one thing that's very unusual about these is that they have a lot of wrapped metallic threads, which is quite unusual. Well, I would like to suggest to you that you take them to a framer who does good conservation framing. Make sure they put a spacer, probably on the edges of the frame, so that you can let the textile breathe.
APPRAISER: Okay? I haven't asked you the big question, which is: what did you pay for them?
GUEST: They were very expensive.
APPRAISER: Very expensive?
GUEST: Very expensive. I paid $20 apiece for them.
APPRAISER: $20 apiece.
GUEST: $40 for the set.
APPRAISER: $40 total. Well, I would say that at a good international auction, I think they would probably sell for somewhere between $15,000 to $20,000, and if you had the right buyers and you got two of them going after it, it could go up higher than that. But they're absolutely exquisite.
GUEST: That's amazing. And that's... together, that would be 15...
APPRAISER: Together, $15,000 to $20,000. That's not a bad deal for a $40 investment.
GUEST: No, that's, that's a wonderful investment. Um, just a silly rhetorical question. You're serious?
APPRAISER: I'm serious. (both laughing) Yes, I am serious.
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