Limoges bowl is worth about $850


Q: We have a Limoges porcelain punch bowl, 18 inches in diameter, which stands 10 inches high on a separate painted hTC and gilded porcelain base. The bowl is decorated with grapes and vines on the outside and strawberries and cherries inside, and it's marked "T & V Limoges, France" underneath. An artist's signature, "M. Frees 1906," appears on the front. Is it valuable?

A: Your porcelain punch bowl on a stand was manufactured by Tressemanes & Vogt in the Limoges region of France and was decorated outside the factory by the amateur artist who signed and dated it. In perfect condition it's worth about $850 retail. It is unusual to find a punch bowl with different interior and exterior motifs, according to Judith Ravnitzky, a New York dealer.

Ms. Ravnitzky will be offering a wide selection of fine Limoges porcelain in booth 1605 at the "Atlantique City" show and sale, March 20 and 21, at the Atlantic City (N.J.) Convention Center. More than 1,000 dealers in all fields of antiques and collectibles will be participating. For information, call (800) 526-2724.

Much late 19th- and early 20th-century Limoges porcelain was sold undecorated. Amateurs working outside the factories added the decoration, often copying designs from catalogs or other pieces. Grape vines and all-over floral designs are the most common motifs of the period.

Pieces professionally decorated at the Limoges factories were marked twice with the factory's mark. In contrast, white wares painted elsewhere have only one factory mark but often bear the artist's signature.

Q: What's our set of upholstered Eastlake furniture (including four side chairs, a pair of platform rockers and a love seat) worth?

A: Eastlake-style furniture is named for the influential British architect Charles L. Eastlake (1836-1906), whose "Hints on Household Taste" became an instant best seller when published in America in 1872. (It was reissued in paperback by Dover in 1986.) So-called "Eastlake" designs remained popular until around 1890 and have made a comeback in recent years.

Prices for manufactured Eastlake furniture (much of which was made in Grand Rapids, Mich.) have remained relatively constant over the last decade, although they're edging up regionally.

Pottstown, Pa., auctioneer Ted Mauer said he could get $1,200 to $1,500 for the suite of furniture described. In New England it probably would bring under $1,000 at auction, according to David Neligan of Skinner Inc. (357 Main St., Bolton, Mass. 01740, [508] 770-6241), who said Eastlake-style furniture remains relatively affordable because so much is available and most requires reupholstering.

Prices rise dramatically when Eastlake-style furniture can be attributed to a famous maker. A pair of side chairs attributed to famed architect and designer Frank Furness and believed to have been made by the highly regarded Daniel Pabst, sold for $3,300 last October at Freeman Fine Arts, auctioneers in Philadelphia. A dining table from the same suite brought $5,720.

' Solis-Cohen Enterprises

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