Why this Midcentury crystal glassware might catch a collector’s eye: Today’s Collectibles

Our collectors’ submissions this month range from a very uncommon crystal glassware set from the mid 20th century to a ship’s figurehead that may date to the 18th century. I owe a big thanks to Joshua Peterson of Shogun’s Gallery in Portland, who helped identify the Japanese vase discussed below.

A closeup of a vase with iridescent swirl art

This vase could likely be attributed to the Wilhelm Kralik Söhne firm of Bohemia.Courtesy of the collector

Art glass vase

Q. My Irish Grandmother, who would have been 150 this year, inherited this vase from her grandmother. It is 8 inches tall and 4 inches in diameter. I don’t see any markings on it. I would like to know anything that you can share about it. M.E., Portland.

A. Based on your photographs, I would attribute your vase to the Wilhelm Kralik Söhne firm of Bohemia. It is of iridescent swirl art glass, and likely to dates to 1900-1910. Similar Kralik vases have recently sold at auction for $200 – $300. Dealers specializing in antique art glass may ask $500 – $700 for such a vase, if in excellent, undamaged condition.

An armless wood chair with a cane seat

This chair is an example of Eastlake style furniture, which would date them to roughly 1870-1890.Courtesy of the collector

Set of six chairs

Q. I have a set of six walnut chairs that I inherited from my great grandparents. Family history says that they came to Oregon in 1852 across the Oregon trail from Iowa. The seats were restored to cane in the last 30 years. Can you tell me anything about them? G.K., Gresham.

A. Based on your photographs, your side chairs are examples of Eastlake style furniture, which would date them to roughly 1870-1890. They appear to be American, and factory manufactured. The Eastlake style was inspired by the English architect Charles Eastlake (1836-1906), who wrote “Hints on Household Taste in Furniture” in 1868. His design principles were popular in both England and the United States and influenced American furniture manufacturers in the last quarter of the 19th century. Collectors and dealers commonly divide this general type of chair into two categories: “armchairs” (chairs with arms) and “side chairs” (chairs without arms). At auction, you might expect a pre-sale estimate of $200 – $300 for such a set. However, I’ve seen growing interest in 19th-century furniture at auctions in the past several months and they may bring more. A dealer in American antique furniture may ask $1,500 – $2,500 for a similar set of Eastlake chairs in excellent serviceable condition.

Three crystal glasses, in small, medium and large sizes, with a short, wide stem and a curved base

This set of crystal is in the “Cambridge Circle” pattern, by the Cambridge Glass Company of Cambridge, Ohio.Courtesy of the collector

Set of crystal glassware

Q. I have a set of 36 pieces of these Cambridge crystal glasses. I have 12 each of the 5 inch water goblets, 3 ½ inch tumblers, and 2 ½ inch cordials. I know they were made in the early 1950s but cannot find a value for them. E.B., Gresham.

A. Your set of crystal is in the “Cambridge Circle” pattern, by the Cambridge Glass Company of Cambridge, Ohio. This company was in business from 1873 to 1958. The pattern of your set was originally called “Horizon” and was listed in the Cambridge catalog from 1951 until 1954. It is an uncommon set and a great example of Midcentury design. At auction, you might expect a pre-sale estimate of $800 – $1,200. A dealer specializing in Midcentury design or American glass might ask $2,000 – $3,000 for such a set, if in excellent undamaged condition.

Japanese vase

Q. I have had this vase for a couple of years. It has no markings and is 10 inches tall. Can you tell me anything about it? A.H., Portland.

A. Based on your photographs, your vase appears to be Japanese Satsuma pottery, which comes from the Satsuma province of Kyushu. It is likely from the later 1940s or 1950s, and this form with handles at the shoulders was likely intended for export to Western markets. At auction, similar pieces have recently sold in the $40 – $70 price range. A dealer specializing in Japanese antiques might ask $150 – $180 for such a vase if in undamaged excellent condition.

A carved wooden figure of a winged woman

This ship’s figurehead may date to the late 18th or perhaps more likely the 19th century.Courtesy of the collector

Ship’s figurehead

Q. My mother-in-law was an antiques dealer and purchased this ship’s figurehead from a French man. She believes that it may be from the 18th century and that it was from a French frigate. It is 4 feet tall, carved wood, and has been mounted on a wood board for hanging. We found no marks on it. Can you tell us anything about the value? J.C., Portland

A. Additionally, you shared that this is currently in storage in California, and not readily available to see in person. Based on your photographs, I can share some general information. Figureheads were commonly seen on ships from the 16th through the 19th centuries. Your figurehead may date to the late 18th or perhaps more likely the 19th century. It may well be French. At auction, a carved figurehead of this type may see an estimate in the $4,000 – $6,000 range. A dealer may ask $20,000 – $30,000, or more, for such a piece if antique and in very good original condition. Further research may be able to identify the ship this piece was originally carved for or the workshop from which it came. It is possible such information may increase the value significantly.

About Today’s Collectibles

The values discussed for items featured in this column were researched by Portland appraiser Jerry L. Dobesh, ASA, an Accredited Senior Appraiser with the American Society of Appraisers, with a specialty designation in Antiques & Decorative Arts. His services include providing appraisals for estate tax, charitable contribution, insurance scheduling and loss, and equitable distribution needs.

To find an appraiser, contact the American Society of Appraisers, the International Society of Appraisers, or the Appraisers Association of America. Estimates suggested in this Collectibles column are for general information purposes only and cannot be used as a basis for sale, insurance, or IRS purposes.

To have items considered for inclusion in future columns, please send us your high-quality images, preferably at least 300 dpi, 1Mb in size and in jpeg format. Photos must show each object in its entirety and must be clearly focused and well lighted to show detail. If there are any maker’s marks, please include an image of those. Include measurements and information about the condition of the piece.

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