I spotted this cool compact at St Vinny’s thrift shop, it was covered in black grime! I believe the figure is the fairy of Happiness Siam, sterling Siam compact 1950’s era.
Sterling Siam Compact 1950’s era
I would estimate the Siam compact to be worth in the $150 range at auction.
Thanks for reading my blog, I just started doing these videos as I seek out thrift shop finds, I’m not very good at recording yet so forgive me!
But tune in often, you never know what i’m going to find! 🙂 xo
Fairy of Happiness
Nielloware jewelry and related items from Thailand were popular gifts from American soldiers taking “R&R” in Thailand to their girlfriends/wives back home from the 1930s to the 1970s. Most of it was completely handmade jewelry.
The technique is as follows: The artisan would carve a particular character or pattern into the silver, leaving the figure raised by carving out the “background”. He would then use the niello inlay to fill in the “background”. After being baked in an open fire, the alloy would harden. It would then be sanded smooth and buffed. Finally, a silver artisan would add minute details by hand. Filigree was often used for additional ornamentation. Nielloware is classified as only being black and silver colored. Other colored jewelry originating during this time uses a different technique and is not considered niello.
Many of the characters shown in nielloware are characters originally found in the Hindu legend Ramayana. The Thai version is called Ramakien. Important Thai cultural symbols were also frequently used. Collecting Thai jewelry (correctly known as Siam Silver jewelry) is a growing hobby with many jewelry enthusiasts. Source Wikipedia