Have you ever wondered whether the boxes gathering dust in your attic could be housing a hidden treasure? That’s what a lucky woman in Bromley discovered when she took a box of antiques to a local valuation, entirely unaware that the contents contained a little more than she was expecting.
The priceless Fabergé frame was discovered by antiques expert Catherine Southon in a box alongside little vases and other tokens at a valuation for her next sale. According to the owner, the frame had been in her family for generations and she said that she was completely unaware that she had been ‘sitting on a fortune’.
Encased in an unassuming, plain wooden box, the nephrite frame is in an unusual triangular shape and is daintily encrusted with seed pears amid glittering rubies. A lavish gold mount engulfs the circular aperture, and each corner is lavishly gilded with a diamond-studded laurel wreath.
Catherine says that she became very emotional as she opened the box and saw the immaculate beauty of the frame, though it was seeing the name ‘Fabergé’ engraved on the underside that was the ‘icing on the cake’.
Further inspection of the object revealed that it was indeed made in the famed House of Fabergé in St Petersburg, and was created by Michael Perkhin, one of Carl Fabergé’s most prestigious craftsmen. Jeweller Carl Fabergé is reknowned for the 50 Easter eggs he made for the Russian royal family, eight of which are missing. Five of these eight are believed to have been destroyed during the Bolshevik Revolution, though one was discovered last year by a scrap metal dealer in America. It went on to fetch $18.5m at auction.
Given the result of the egg, it’s no surprise that the small frame Catherine Southon found is estimated to fetch between £8,000-£12,000 at auction on Wednesday 8th June.
The frame can be viewed from 7th June at Farleigh Court Golf Club, Old Farleigh Road, Selsdon, Surrey, CR6 9PE. For more information about the sale visit catherinesouthon.co.uk