Old Newbury Crafters "Windsor Shell" Ster. Punch Ladle
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Solid silver, fully original and completely hand made, this punch ladle bears the unicorn mark of Geoffrey Blake who is a contemporary master smith producing for Old Newbury Crafters silver.
Sources list Blake as starting his association with ONC in 1971. In-depth, illustrated, online articles about him, the company, and the production of hand worked silver are available on the sites "smpub.com" and "paulreverehouse.org." A google search will turn up other links. He remains a skilled figurehead for an art form that has few practicing artisans.
The quality of that art is abundantly evident in this large, 11 7/8" long, very heavy at 8.4 T. oz., punch ladle. The pattern is "Windsor Shell," which features a shell motif imprinted on the rounded end of the handle. The handle rises straight off the bowl, and is arched almost to the horizontal about two-thirds of the way up.
The entire surface of the piece is hand hammered, with the exterior of the bowl having more finely rendered detail than the handle and bowl interior. The bowl is generously proportioned at 4 1/2" wide, 3" back to front, and 2" deep, and has double spouts with a rolled front edge. The finish is remarkably smooth, silken to the touch actually, and has an even, soft brilliance.
The condition is mint. There is no wear whatsoever, nor any dents, bends, or scuffs.
Marks are "HANDWROUGHT," "O.N.C. sterling," and Blake's emblem.