Friday, 18 January 2013

c1920s Rare Beatrice Hindley Flowers - Simply Stunning!

It's not every day that I get a phone call, asking if I would be interested in taking on some signed Beatrice Hindley flowers.....but this is just what happened last week and here we are now!

Well....I have to admit that in all my years here at KT Miniatures,  I'd never handled Beatrice Hindley flowers before (not many peope have) so was a little concerned that it might be difficult to assess whether they were the real thing or not. But once the emailed photos started arriving, I was left in no doubt that these four little treasures were indeed "the real thing". Their value is well documented on the internet for all to see plus I was told by this lady that a well known auction house had taken a look and given her an estimated we all knew exactly what we were dealing with here.

So folks, am delighted to tell you that I now have three of those four up for sale....(well I HAVE to keep one don't I)!

 The pot of tulips stands at 3" tall and have four blooms with accompanying leaves. The turned wooden pot has been hand decorated by Beatrice and is absolutely gorgeous.

 Beatrice was a friend of Gertrude Jekyll, the infamous garden designer and horticulturist, who in the early 1920s, when asked to design the garden for Queen Mary's dolls house, enlisted Beatrice and her sister for help. The plants were created out of thin brass shim and other alloys, then painted in oil paints. Each of the pots were turned out of wood, some were painted up decoratively with patterns and others were left plain. Beatrice apparently spent many hours studying the flowers at Kew Gardens in order to make her plants as accurately as possible.

The detail is exquisite. In fact the photos don't do them the flesh they look even more amazing and you just know that they are something rather special.

The crocuses sit in a plain green bowl, there are seven flower heads plus a further three buds....breathtaking! Apparently it is thought that the plain bowls were designed to sit in some of those rather lovely decorated planters that were prevalent in the 1920s....whereas the highly decorated painted pots were designed to stand alone. 
Then there is this exquisite bowl of anemones...again in one of Beatrice's decorative pots. There are five flower heads on this plant and the accompanying leafage. As sometimes found in vintage dolls house turned wooden pots, in a couple of these pots are some teeny cracks but nothing too detrimental. However, as these are 90 years old, I think we can forgive them for having the odd wrinkle or too!

Beatrice made a whole variety of high quality flowers. Mine are all examples from her spring flower range. You can find out more information about Beatrice and see photos of a whole array of her flowers in a special section at the back of Liza Antrim's wonderful book.....Family Dolls' Houses Of The 18th & 19th Centuries. (See KT Miniatures Recommended Reading Page for details on publisher etc.).

 On her death Beatrice bequeathed 80 to the Queen, which are displayed at Sandringham.

Which one am I keeping? Well, it had to be the Pheasant's Eye Narcissus....seen below. I would have loved to have kept them all, but as you supposed to be running a business here!!!

As a footnote to this little story, I must tell you how the lady from up north came across these four little treasures. Well....apparently she bought some boxes of china at an auction and these four plants were randomly discovered in a teacup, right at the bottom of one of the boxes!!! She knew nothing about miniatures or dolls began Googling the name - Beatrice Hindley, as each pot had her signature underneath.  Then by the power of the internet, she was led to KT Miniatures.
Ooooooh...I really do LOVE my job sometimes!!!

These three are now available to purchase. See under the Antique 1/12th main index or for quickness,


Giac said...

Hello Celia,
I think i am repeating myself, but all I can think is how many wonderful, beautiful miniatures have gone through your hands. Thank you for this great blog and sharing pictures and knowledge about such wonderful work and artists.
big hug,

Sandra Morris said...

What an amazing find.... these are just so beautiful.
I hope they all find good homes, deserving of their rarity.


KT Miniatures said...

Giac and Sandra....thank you for your comments. These flowers are pretty amazing arn't they? Needless to say that they were snapped up quickly....within an hour or so of being listed yesterday. Beatrice Hindley's skill is breathtaking. Celia

Bookworm said...

Beatrice Hindley was my Great Great Aunt (possibly one extra Great, I am not sure). I have a table belonging to her but sadly no other examples of her work. I am extremely proud of being related to her and wish that I possessed a thousandth of her artistic talent.

KT Miniatures said...

Hi Bookworm. fantastic! Thank you for taking the time to comment! Your Great Great (Great?) Aunt was certainly a talented lady and her work is highly sought after, even now after all these years. Celia