19th Century French crystal and mother-of-pearl toiletry box.
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19th Century French crystal and mother-of-pearl toiletry box.
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Charles X vanity set in cut crystal with gilt bronze mounts. The crystal is cut into twisting, parallel, and diamond patterns. Inside, a complete set of toiletry items in mother of pearl and gilt bronze rests on a velvet tray that hides the double bottom of the case. The box rests on four winged feet shaped like hooves. Royal Palace mark on the brush and tongue scraper. In the 18th century, the notion of toiletry essentials or the “Necessaire” is well defined, thanks to Ruobo’s work, The Art of Woodwork, published in 1772. We learn from his book that toiletry boxes known as the Necessaire are small boxes or wooden cases used to hold toiletry items for travel. Gradually the definition of Necessaire widened, and eventually included all tools used for hygiene, lunch, writing, sewing, and even mathematics. Under the Second Empire, Necessaires used for sewing, embroidery, drawing, and painting were popular with young girls as well as with their mothers, as they appreciated the refinement and luxury that these Necessaires brought to their daily lives. In the 19th century, the proliferation of embroidery Necessaries, which were sometimes small but often extremely luxurious, demonstrates the veritable invasion of feminine leisure in the aristocratic and bourgeois world. W: 6,3 in – D: 3,9in – H: 4,5in. Circa: 1815-1820. Price: 6700€ REF: 1007 Bibliography: Indispensables necessaires, Musee National des chateaux de Malmaison et de Bois-Preau, 2008. L'art de vivre au temps de Joséphine. B.Chevallier. Flammarion. 1998.

19th Century French crystal and mother-of-pearl toiletry box.