Antique movie projector and other stories

2012-06-29 22.15.42One of our readers asked us to tell a bit about interesting ‘finds’ so that is what this is about.  I am sorry about the cluttered picture but it is the best we have of recent stock. The interesting stuff moves too fast sometimes even to get it into a picture, like the Sylvac gnome I write about later.

In this picture is a Crown Devon musical mug that plays Auld Lang Syne (South Africa) – it is on the white stand, to its right on the table below are two Czechoslovakian vases that another dealer swears are fine eggshell porcelain made in the 1920s and hand painted.  (house clearance)I thought they were glass. Just below the jug is a Pierre D’Avesn opalescent bowl made in the 1920’s, he trained with Lalique and worked for the Daum factory for many years (a South African charity shop) and the orange cylindrical vase next to it was purchased by Alan in Azerbaijan in a souk there, it is 1960s art glass and a fine piece which for some reason seems to like living with us.  The D’Avesn can live with us as long as it likes however.  According to Carter’s Guide to antiques it is not that high value but it is so beautiful that I have put a biggish price on it and will be happy for it be part of the kids’ inheritance one day.

Also on the stand and its pair below it are two 1970s Austrian crystal ornaments  (garage sale in Australia) that look like scales.  They are spectacular to look at and ‘give us nerves’ because they are high value and we hope to sell them very soon but they will need a buyer with a big home and big sideboard or dining table to display them properly…  On the lower left on the table is a silver tea service,(charity shop in SA) it is plated, made by L&S Sheffield, and fabulous quality and for those who like highly decorated silver , it would be a find. We had a silver tray that matches as if made for it.  Then behind it a bit is a green oval bowl in uranium glass.  It is our last piece of uranium and also seems to be fond of its place in our household.  We don’t mind, just wish we could find some more to keep it company.  I love the way it glows green under UV light.  This one isn’t particularly strong which might be why it has elected to stay with us.

What you see partly hidden behind a box of ‘toolie’ stuff is a very old and rusty projector.  The handle still turns and the remains of the silvering behind the lens is there – I imagine it would date to the 1890’s, we have yet to discover its possible value and are giving silly numbers at this stage because we hope to get it properly authenticated and valued eventually.  Came from underneath the house we were clearing and had a companion in a very old rusty model of a Thames Trader that still had the writing on the tyres and everything moving that should have.  We sold it at Alstonville to a very frail old man who just had to have it.  Alan often says – “We are in the wants business not the needs business.”  The box in front of the projector is a set of measuring tools (antique shop in SA) and we sold them at the Gympie Duck Pond market.

The other most interesting ‘find’ was a Sylvac Garden Gnome – #110 bought for pretty big money at a charity shop in South Africa.  It was filthy with what looked like layers of nicotine staining.  I cleaned it up and we sold it, also at Alstonville.  We know we had too little on it – but had given a price to someone and then were advised it was too low but weren’t thinking properly and left it as it was, so of course someone paid that price – we didn’t discount though.  We also bought a small Dresden china ballerina that was in perfect nick when we bought it but unfortunately didn’t survive the journey.  I was very sad about it I loved the fraility and delicacy of it and really hoped to be able to sell it here.  Another might have been.  Like the 1930’s leather car coat Joe and I found in Portobello Road in 1969.  It fitted perfectly, nipped waist flared skirt and shaping tucks in the bodice and all.  I t needed new lining.  I have thought about that coat a lot –  so imagine my delight when I found a gorgeous rusty red heavy velvet sort of fabric car coat same vintage (also with a pinched waist) as the leather one, in a charity shop in Ballina.  It also needs a new lining but looks striking on my linen hanging rail.

There are a few little stories – hope you enjoyed them.



About retrocentricaussie

We are a pair of ageing 'gypsies' who find junk and sell antiques, especially objects from the art nouveau/art deco years and old and well-loved tools. We also occasionally buy antiques as well!! We haunt clearance sales, garage sales, charity shops and sometimes dumps. Lately we have even been to a 'proper' auction. The thrill is in the chase for good stuff at prices we can afford and still sell the items on at a profit sufficient to support us. We recycle what other people don't want anymore, we find new homes for nice things. We sell at markets and antique fairs, swap meets and wherever else we can find. Our clientele are mostly ordinary people who want something they can afford that will enhance their quality of life. We are especially pleased when generation Y buy from us. It suggests that appreciation of quality and good design is still part of our modern aesthetic.
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4 Responses to Antique movie projector and other stories

  1. Daniel Comyn says:

    Hi! Gyppo’s
    Gayley and I have just returned from a NZ North Island trip!
    If there is a Hemel op arde dis die plek!

  2. Rob Pazdro says:

    What a fun blog– both of you have great eyes for the goods. It’s a good thing you’re so far away as there are a number of tempting pieces in that pic! I agree with Alan that the Azebaijani orange glass vase was a brilliant find. Best of luck with continued sales!

  3. Daryl Sparkes says:

    Hey Lynette, from the look of that old projector I’d say it’s either a Lumiere Cinematograph or an Edison Kinetescope. Both were made around the same time 1895-1905. There were quite a lot of both made and funnily enough, Australia was one of the first places after France that the Lumiere’s used their Cinematograph. I don’t know the value of these but from the look of it, well, it looks in bad shape with quite a few of the bits missing, and the rust! It should be shiny brass! Keep sending these through, I love your updates.
    Daryl (from USQ)

  4. frdeluz says:

    I bet the Crown Devon mug adds a lot feeling to “We’ll drink a right good draught of ale”…

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