Sunday, May 8, 2011

Dead Relatives

I once went to a dear friends home for formal tea, never confuse formal tea with high tea, and as I was being escorted to her lovely appointed salon I mentioned how charming the photographs were that adorned the hallway walls.

She said simply, "Dead relatives." They were very old and lovely pictures of many interesting people. Later when we were again alone I asked how she was related to one very august and patrician woman whose photo caught my eye on entering. It was then she confided that she had bought all of the pictures in antique shops and the like and that they were "Dead relatives" by adoption. I am glad that those pictures taken so long ago have found someone as delightful as my friend to "adopt" them.

Which brings me today's topic: Engraved collectable and antique silver. Hand Engraving is not a lost art and if you want it you have to pay dearly for it. However, if you purchase silver which has been prior engraved it is usually discounted. I have friends that blanch at the thought of owning silver with someone ELSE'S initial on it. How perfectly silly. The photo above is the engraving of the original owner's monogram on a magnificent sucrier (sue-kree-ay) I purchased. I use it to anoint pain perdu with a dusting of sugar. It joins a collection of beautifully marked pieces with sumptuous engravings. Now, when people ask the unfortunate question, I simply respond,"Dead relatives".

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