February meeting

It’s Fabergé for February as we welcome Geoffrey Munn who will be talking about Fabergé in the court of King Edward VII. Geoffrey Munn is a jewellery specialist, historian and writer, best known as a television presenter on the BBC Antiques Roadshow, where he has been a specialist contributor since 1989.

Some of his most notable discoveries include a Saxon gold ring found in the roots of a hedge. At the Black Country Museum in 2017 Geoffrey discovered a study of pear blossom by Carl Fabergé in enamelled gold set with diamonds that he valued at £1,000,000. This was one of only two or three similar discoveries in the entire history of the show. He has written extensively about antiques, including many articles about Gustav Faberge and the art of Fabergé.

The House of Fabergé is a jewellery firm founded in 1842 in Saint Petersburg, Russia, by Gustav Faberge, using the accented name Fabergé. The firm was famous for designing elaborate jewel-encrusted Fabergé eggs for the Russian Tsars, and for a range of other work of high quality and intricate detail.

It’s a busy month for us as we will also be voting on next years resolution shortlist, do bring along your voting slip from WI Life. All the resolutions on the short list are on the campaigns page of the website and in the November/December issue of WI Life on page 24.

We will also be voting on how to use our profits from all our fundraising from last year.

And we will be collecting our usual donations of toiletries for Solace Women’s Aid.

Plus tea and cake, of course.

All our regular winter specialist interest groups are back check the website pages for more details.

 

 

In January we had a fantastic trip out to the world’s first bricks and mortar museum dedicated to vaginas, vulvas and gynaecological anatomy in Camden, to see their Muff Busters: Vagina Myths And How To Fight Them exhibition. If you weren’t able to join us do go along and visit The Vagina Museum at Unit 17 and 18 at The Stables Market, it is such an informative exhibition and it’s free. The exhibition is on until the end of March. Here’s some pictures from our jaunt.

 

What’s it worth?

What a fabulous start to the year as  we welcomed Nicola Whittaker from Fellows Auctioneers.  Fellows is a family run firm and Nicola is a sixth generation member of her family to join the business and she began working in the auction house aged 16 in her school holidays.  Fellows are based in Birmingham but have an office in Mayfair, London where Nicola now works. Specialising in jewellery and watches, she explained that unlike many other auction houses, they do not put a lower price limit on items they auction.  Passionate and informative she took us through a whistlestop tour of the history of jewellery, how changes in society emerged in changing aesthetics, and how things changed further as exploration, excavation  and gem cutting equipment developed. She was so generous with her time and her knowledge and  spent a further hour with us looking at the treasures members had brought in and giving us information on origin , history and potential value.    She also mentioned that that Fellows have open afternoons where anyone can go and peruse the items up for auction so we are thinking we may plan a trip there. If you are interested in coming along email us at debeauvoirwi@gmail.com