This is a beautiful cabaret tray made by Edmé Samson in Paris some time in the 19th Century. The tray is in the 'blue scale' style that the Worcester factory made in the 18th Century.

 

Edmé Samson was founded in Paris in 1845 and specialised in making replacements for valuable items of the French gentry and museums. They became so good at this that they eventually grew out to be the "great imitators" - not necessarily to fool anyone, but more to fill in gaps in collections that had arisen through breakage and wear, and to offer the new French bourgeoisie an affordable way to obtain pieces of top quality. This is how they came to create many items in the style of Sèvres, Meissen, Bow, Chelsea and Derby. The good Samson pieces are now highly collectable in their own right as they rival the quality of the originals.

 

This beautiful cabaret tray would have served as a tray for a matching tea or coffee service. It has a pleasing, slightly French lobed shape; the decoration consists of alternating white and powder blue panels with finely hand painted flowers. There is a typical Worcester style motif around the corner, and the tray is marked with a fake Worcester fret mark.

 

This tray was made in superb quality - Edmé Samson may have copied it all, but they did a fabulous job of it. The porcelain body is clearly 19th Century soft-paste porcelain with a shiny finish. 

 

CONDITION REPORT:  The tray is in perfect antique condition without any damage, repairs, crazing or even wear other than some very minimal rubbing as can be expected. There is a small firing fault on the underside, which is from production (see last picture).

 

Antique porcelain is never perfect. Kilns were fired on coal in the 1800s, and this meant that china from that period can have some firing specks from flying particles. Makers were also known for their experimentation, and sometimes this resulted in technically imperfect results. Due to the shrinkage in the kiln, items can have small firing lines or develop crazing over time, which should not be seen as damage but as an imperfection of the maker's recipes, probably unknown at the time of making. Items have often been used for many years and can have normal signs of wear, and gilt can have signs of slight disintegration even if never handled. I will reflect any damage, repairs, obvious stress marks, crazing or heavy wear in the item description but some minor scratches, nicks, stains and gilt disintegration can be normal for vintage items and need to be taken into account.

 

There is widespread confusion on the internet about the difference between chips and nicks, or hairlines and cracks. I will reflect any damage as truthfully as I can, i.e. a nick is a tiny bit of damage smaller than 1mm and a chip is something you can easily see with the eye; a glazing line is a break in the glazing only; hairline is extremely tight and/or superficial and not picked up by the finger; and a crack is obvious both to the eye and the finger.

 

Dimensions: 33cm X 27cm (13" X 10.6").

Edmé Samson cabaret tray, Worcester blue scale style, 19th C

SKU: A-SAM05
£595Price
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