Photo Credit: Relic-Island
Buy It Now Price: $369.99
-These attractive Art Nouveau gilt bronze Tiffany desk blotter ends were made by the famous American luxury house of Tiffany Studios in the early decades of the 20th century, between about 1900 and 1918.
-These Tiffany desk blotter ends measure 12.25 inches (31.1 cm) long by 2.25 inches (5.7 cm) wide. Each one is stamped "TIFFANY STUDIOS NEW YORK 1153" on the side. 1153 is an inventory number that denotes both the type of item (a desk blotter end) and the design (Abalone in this case).
-A desk blotter is a flat pad or sheet that is placed on the surface of a desk to protect it from damage due to ink spills or pen indentations. They were traditionally made from leather, although synthetic plastic desk blotters are fairly commonplace today. Desk blotter ends were placed on either edge of a desk blotter in order to help hold it in place.
-There are over 20 known patterns for Tiffany Studios desk sets. The beautifully interwoven vine and leaf design shown above is known as "Abalone" due to the use of iridescent mother of pearl elements. Abalone is one of the more commonly encountered Tiffany desk set designs.
-Art Nouveau was a naturalistic art style that was extremely popular between 1890 and 1910, although it persisted slightly longer in the U.S. It typically featured women, flowers, insects or other nature themes, often in flowing, languid poses.
-The typical Tiffany Studios desk set had 6 pieces, including a letter rack, ink stand and desk blotter ends. Other possible elements were a letter opener, box, calendar holder, ink blotter or pen tray, among others.
-The zeitgeist of these Tiffany desk blotter ends is off the charts! They personify the flowing, naturalistic sensibilities of Art Nouveau style that was so popular before World War I.
-These Tiffany desk blotter ends are in remarkably good condition for being at least a century old. The gilding is largely intact and the mother of pearl inlay has few cracked or chipped pieces. This is unusual because mother of pearl tends to dry out over many decades, leaving it susceptible to damage.
-Tiffany Studios was a celebrated luxury house that always produced goods to the very highest quality standards. From its origins in the 1870s until its demise during the Great Depression, the firm had often been in the vanguard of American style. Because of this, luxury goods created by Tiffany Studios are always in high demand, with a price to match. Therefore, I find the $370 asking price for these Tiffany desk blotter ends to be fair.
Antique Tiffany Studios Desk Accessories For Sale
-While I believe the $370 asking price is fair, I've seen this seller put these same Tiffany desk blotter ends on sale for $300 before. At $300, I think this matching set would be a steal. If you like them, you could always make an offer to the seller at the lower price. I think he would probably accept it.
-Some people might consider a set of desk blotter ends to be an anachronism today. However, I think they would be a welcome addition to the desk of any vintage fountain pen aficionado or office traditionalist. In addition, these Tiffany desk blotter ends would make a stunning decorative item for a fireplace mantel or shelf in any well-appointed home.
-Unfortunately, fraud is rampant in the field of Tiffany Studios antiques, especially Tiffany lamps. While this piece looks genuine to me, I am no Tiffany Studios expert. The only element I found at all questionable is the micro-pitting evident on high magnification, which I attribute to corrosion due to storage conditions. If you are unsure about the authenticity of this piece, I would recommend that you solicit a second opinion from a knowledgeable source.
-Tiffany Studios was a different company from the well-known luxury jeweler Tiffany & Co. Don't confuse the two!