Getting into the Christmas spirit at W.R. Harvey & Co (Antiques) Ltd, Witney (www.wrharvey.com)
Selection of fine jewellery from Howards Jewellers, Stratford-on-Avon (www.howardsjewellers.com)
Getting ahead with Christmas shopping is proving more difficult this year with yet another lockdown, so here are some ideas from members of The Cotswold Art & Antiques Dealers’ Association (CADA) that can be perused online. Each month, the CADA Instagram (@cadaartandantiquesassociation) concentrates on a specific topic. In the past, there has been The CADA Flower Show, the Sea and most recently Autumn, each encompassing as many dealers and disciplines as possible. This month, some of the Cotswolds’ art and antique dealers are sharing their suggestions for Christmas inspired interiors and gifts, but do check out their individual websites to make your own discoveries.
Alex Puddy, Chair of CADA, said, “This month, with lockdown about to commence again, CADA’s followers can enjoy our members’ ideas inspired by Christmas and special gift suggestions. If they like what they see, they can contact the relevant dealer to discuss and find out more about the history, provenance, condition, measurements, shipping and delivery options and potentially to negotiate a price. The Cotswolds is one of the most beautiful and historic areas of England and is home to the largest concentration of art and antiques outside London. Our Instagram account also shares and celebrates images taken in the area, which may be helpful when planning a trip here. We look forward to providing a warm welcome to visitors when it is safe. In the meantime, we continue to help people online and over the telephone.”
The composition of some of the items to be featured this November actually celebrates Christmas – a watercolour painting of ‘The Tinsel Tree’ by Elizabeth Sorrell RWS (1916-1991), £1,650 from Newman Fine Art (www.newmanfineart.co.uk); ‘Christmas Lunch’ by John Sherrin (1819-1896), £2,800 from Sarah Colegrave Fine Art (www.sarahcolegrave.co.uk) and the Christmas story English needlework, depicting Joseph leading Mary and the baby Jesus on a donkey, signed and dated Mary Parker fecit, 1763, £980 from Legge Carpets (www.leggecarpets.com) based in Summertown, Oxford.
Other posts present ideas that might help with finding a unique and highly desirable Christmas present for loved ones. For women, a George III Belgian Spa grisaille pink oval tea caddy, circa 1760-1770, £3,500 from Freshfords Fine Antiques (www.freshfords.com) in Bradford-on-Avon whilst Mayflower Antiques (www.mayflower-antiques.co.uk) has a selection of 17th century boxes amongst which is a rare silver filigree little pomander, circa 1690, £750 and a little carved mother-of-pearl box with silver mounts, £4,000. In Stratford-on-Avon, Howards Jewellers (www.howardsjewellers.com) has a wide selection of antique and contemporary jewellery, as well as precious collectibles for women and men.
Having spent so much time at home in 2020, many people are considering upgrading their interiors or are just ready for a change, so some couples may be inspired to indulge themselves this Christmas with something as simple as fabulous cushions made from a 19th century Qashqai carpet with velvet backing, in various sizes, from £96 each at Legge Carpets or a little 18th century oak table cabinet, made around 1730, in which to keep special and precious items, £575 from Prichard Antiques (www.prichardantiques.co.uk) in Winchcombe.
'The Tinsel Tree' by Elizabeth Sorrell RSW, watercolour, £1,650 from Newman Fine Art, Cirencester
George lll Belgian Spa grisaille pink oval tea cadde c. 1760-70 £3,500 from Freshfords Fine Antiques, Bradford-on-Avon
19th century Qashqai cushions with velvet backing, from £96 from Legge Carpets Ltd Summertown, Oxford
Collinson rocking horse c. 1950 £1,250 from Moxhams Antiques Bradford-on-Avon
Not forgetting the children, Moxhams Antiques (www.moxhams-antiques.co.uk), with showrooms in Bradford-on-Avon, has two delightful rocking horses. The earliest one was made by Lines around 1920. It is on a wooden stand with turned pillars and the head is slightly tilted, £2,250. The other horse is larger and on a plainer wooden stand and is attributed to Collinson, made about 1950, £1,250. Both have been sensitively restored and retain most of their original paint and tack. Even the horsehair manes and tails are mainly original.
Christmas may be difficult from the point of handing over presents directly in person, so prints from specialist Elizabeth Harvey-Lee (www.elizabethharvey-lee.com) are worth considering as they are easy to post. Specialising in in old masters to modern British and Continental artists’ etchings, engravings, lithographs and more, from the 15th to 21th centuries, Elizabeth Harvey-Lee has a small selection of contemporary artists’ prints from around Europe – an original etching from 2001 ‘A Gust of Wind’ by Reinder Homan (born The Netherlands 1950), £250 and ‘Tired Dog’ by Michael Blaker R.E. (1928-2018), circa 1980, £125.
Chinese ceramics might not immediately come to mind as something Father Christmas would take down the chimney, but blue and white is often a favourite colour choice for ceramics and there are some interesting pieces that might be suitable presents from Catherine Hunt Oriental Antiques (www.cathy-hunt.co.uk). One rare piece for sale is a Chinese 17th century blue and white Master of the Rocks conical cup made during the reign of the Emperor Chongzhen (1628-1644), the last Ming Emperor. £5,750 or a charming Yongzheng biscuit figure, £480.
To make it a white Christmas all year round, in its Broadway gallery, Trinity House Paintings (www.trinityhousepaintings.com) has a selection of wintery oil paintings by Charles Spencelayh (1865-1958), Kyffin Williams KBE, RA (1918-2006), Brian 'Braaq' Shields (1951-1997), and a white out in ‘Park Avenue, New York’ by Johann Berthelsen (1883-1972), £28,500. For the avid cricket fan, Haynes Fine Art in Broadway (www.haynesfineart.com) has recently taken on the paintings by former England and Gloucestershire cricket legend Jack Russell MBE. The famous wicket keeper played 54 Test matches, 40 ODIs and 465 first-class games. Now a full-time artist, he began painting nearly 30 years ago in cricket pavilions when rain stopped play. Not all his paintings are cricket scenes; one oil on canvas depicts 'Snow at the Brook, Luckington’ and is priced at £1,780.
Rare silver filligree pomander, c. 1690 £750 from Mayflower Antiques
'Christmas Lunch' by John Sherrin, 19th century watercolour, £2,800 from Sarah Colegrave Fine Art
Follow The Cotswold Art & Antiques Dealers’ Association on Instagram @cadaartandantiquesassociation to see more Christmas inspiration and gift ideas or join the mailing list for future news of online and actual events to visit, when allowed, at www.thecada.org.