Elegant and delicate Antique French Silver Gilded or Vermeil 13 piece Ice Cream Flatware service by renowned ‘Maitre’ Orfèvre Emile PUIFORCAT
The set is decorated in the very pure Louis XVI style with a ribbon line (or Décor de Rubans Croisés) running around the edge of the handles. The style is very simple but extremely elegant, in the superb craftsmanship Emile Puiforcat was known for! There are 12 spoons and one Service spoon. The set is originally devised for ice cream, but can be used as a dessert set as well.
The Ice Cream set is in ‘Vermeil’ or gold plated silver and is beautifully preserved, with no dents to the pieces. The silver is 1st title hence the highest denomination for French Silver which is not always the case with gold plated pieces.
There is no wear to the vermeil which is very subtly applied. The set is presented in its original box showing the name of the reseller in Nimes on the inside silk liner. The leather box is quite nice with a beautiful gold wreath. A few scratches on the leather, by quite well preserved overall.
Lenght given above is that of the smaller spoons: the Service spoon is 10.23″.
The Hallmark is Minerve 1 -1st title – Hence 1838 to 1919 – Paris
The Makers Mark is for Emile PUIFORCAT which was registered in 1857; it features an E and a P separated by a standing feather.
The mark is still so famous it does deserve a bit more explanations: Emile PUIFORCAT enherited the business from his uncle Jean Baptiste FUCHS who specialized in flatware in the early 1800s. Emile Puiforcat moved from the offices of his uncle right next door at #18 then 16 of Rue Chapon. While he died in 1883, his mark was kept by his successor as well as his grandson Jean, who passed away in 1945.
Until the 1880 the House of Puiforcat remained in the flatware business but also expended into the larger pieces to include presentations plates and platters.
Though very praised for its craftsmanship PUIFORCAT never participated in the Fairs that did so much for the Silver business in the 1800. The house continued on through the years and was finally bought by Hermes in 1993.