Valentine with lace paper and faux pearls

Attributed to Esther Howland American

Not on view

Exquisite lace paper produced by MANSELL is used in copious layers to create a Valentine with numerous delicate lift-up flaps and openings. Each lace page or flap is edged in gold paint. The top layer is edged in gold, and the lace is further highlighted in gold. A central area of paper has been removed and replaced with blue satin fabric. At the center is a magnificent rosette of folded white satin ribbon, which is dotted with gold paper stars, and six pearl pendants. In the center is a die-cut scrap of a rose and forget-me-nots. The next layer has a bouquet of tiny fabric flowers, with a bright gold Dresden paper die-cut bow. Another layer has a watercolor bouquet, and poetry written in ink. The final layer, consists of two pieces of lace, attached as doors, each with a silver dove affixed, and closed with a silver die-cut of a kneeling Cupid. The doors open to reveal the chromolithographed image of a loving couple, framed with embossed gold.

The embellishments and style lead to the conclusion that this, although unsigned, is from the workshop of Esther Howland.

Valentine with lace paper and faux pearls, Attributed to Esther Howland (American, Worcester, Massachusetts 1828–1904 Quincy, Massachusetts), Cameo-embossed lace paper, chromolithographed die-cuts, faux pearls, blue satin, white satin ribbon, gold paper stars, graphite, ink, watercolor

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