CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Derbyshire Life today CLICK HERE

Antiques & Collecting: A Fan for Easter

PUBLISHED: 16:18 06 July 2009 | UPDATED: 15:54 20 February 2013

Silk leaf painted with a parrot and doves c1775, value £550-£600.

Silk leaf painted with a parrot and doves c1775, value £550-£600.

Before the existence of air conditioning ladies of all ages carried fans to events such as a ball or the theatre. Either kept in handbags or hung from the wrist by a short decorated strap, they rapidly became a fashionable as well as practical acc...

They can be dated by the painting on the leaf - the material stretched between the sticks - and the shape and colour of the sticks. The painting can be compared to contemporary portrait miniatures, watercolours and oil paintings to give a date and country of origin, and costumes worn by painted figures can also help with a date.

The subject matter on fans varied considerably. At the start of the 18th century, classical and Biblical subjects were popular; from the mid-18th century pastoral subjects became fashionable, often painted as two- or three-sided pictures. Lacquered fans called Vernis Martin were popular in the early 18th century and again in about 1900. Printed fans that were often commemorative were made from the 1720s onwards, when fan-makers felt it was necessary to expand their trade and produce less expensive pieces. Although at the time these were cheap, because they were short-lived they are now scarce and much sought after. Some are rare and interesting, such as those commemorating the 1727 coronation or the Battle of Colloden in 1744. These fetch almost as high a price as a painted fan. Some subjects are amusing and entertaining, such as 'conundrum' fans. Most from the 18th century are etchings, but many other types of prints do appear on fans, such as aquatints, stipple engravings and even mezzotints, but these are very rare.

Early 19th century fans were mainly very small and made of ivory or bone. A few from the late 18th and early 19th centuries were painted in the manner of famous artists and from the 1880s some very fine lace fans were produced. In the 20th century amusing advertising fans were made, usually for grand hotels, restaurants and perfumes. These were mainly French and were often designed by well-known artists.

Fans were popular presents to give on special occasions such as Christmas, Easter and anniversaries. Though no longer a fashion accessory, a fan can still make a lovely gift and a collection of fans can make a most attractive display;

0 comments

More from Out & About

This walk offers a dance with the Dove and a meander by the Manifold, whilst along the way passing a church, castle remains, country houses and a hollow way

Read more

With winter on the horizon, trees glow with colour, migratory birds arrive and house spiders set off in search of a mate

Read more

Ann Hodgkin investigates a case of the sincerest form of flattery… or industrial espionage!

Read more

Derbyshire Wildlife Trust’s vision is of landscapes rich in wildlife, valued by everyone. They will achieve this 
by pursuing their mission of creating Living Landscapes. Here Julia Gow, the White Peak Reserve Officer at Derbyshire Wildlife Trust tells us about the reserve above the River Wye

Read more

Nigel Powlson visits Sudbury where a shopping courtyard is attracting even more visitors to this quintessential English village

Read more

If you’re walking in the Peak District, the chances are that you could encounter a reservoir at some point during your ramble. There are dozens of resevoirs dotted around all corners of the national park, we pick some of our favourite walks from our archive.

Read more
Peak District

A five-year Heritage Lottery-funded scheme, launched in 2010, was designed to encourage the restoration and conservation of the distinctive landscape character of a large area of north-east Derbyshire.

Read more

Enjoy the wonder of woodland in our glorious Derwent Valley on this park and ride special.

Read more

Paul Hobson reveals some of the fascinating wildlife there is to be found in this month of transition

Read more

From far away constellations to gas clouds, our night skies are bursting with natural wonders – if you know where to look... Viv Micklefield goes stargazing in Derbyshire

Read more

Derbyshire Wildlife Trust works across six Living Landscapes with 46 nature reserves to ensure there is wildlife and wild places for everyone. Reserve officer Sam Willis tells us about one of his favourite places – Ladybower Wood Nature Reserve

Read more

A multi-million pound makeover attracts more leading brands to one of the UK’s biggest shopping destinations

Read more

The first ever National GetOutside Day takes place on Sunday 30 September with the aim of getting 1 million people active outdoors across the UK.

Read more

Derby’s QUAD arts centre has become an important part of the city’s identity over the last decade and it celebrates its impact on the cultural landscape at its 10th anniversary this September

Read more
Derby

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy


Subscribe or buy a mag today

Topics of Interest


Local Business Directory


Property Search