Monthly Archives: October 2011

Creative Museum: Haute Couture Mercedes Robirosa comb

Mercedes Robirosa was one of Yves St. Laurent’s favorite models in the late 1960’s and 70’s. Laurent chose Robirosa to model the Mondrian dress, which is in the permanent collection of the Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute. After her modeling career, … Continue reading

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Hair Combs from the Parthian and Sasanian Empires of Ancient Persia

The Parthian Empire existed in Ancient Persia from 247 BC – 224 AD. It is also called the Arsacid Empire after Arsaces I of Parthia, the Parni tribal leader who conquered what is now, modern-day Iran’s northeast region. At its … Continue reading

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Ebay: Chinese Ivory Export Comb

Someone is selling a beautiful Chinese ivory comb made for export to the Victorian market, c. 1890. It has a lotus flower in the middle, with beautiful scroll work. Stylistically married on top are balls of the Peigne Josephine. You … Continue reading

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Italian Papal Tiara

In Latin, it is known as the Triregnum. The crown of the Roman Catholic Pope has three jeweled tiers, but is rooted in Byzantine and Persian design. In fact, the word, “tiara,” is Persian. The bottom crown appeared in the … Continue reading

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Henri Gillet Hair Comb

Henri Gillet used Art Nouveau designs to make lithographs, which were used as wallpaper from 1900 to the 1920’s. On one of them, he designed a horn comb. If it were ever made, I’d imagine the flurry of leaves to … Continue reading

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Bird of Paradise Ceremonial Headdress from Papua New Guinea

A colleague of Charles Darwin, Alfred Russel Wallace (1823-1913) spent a decade writing The Malay Archipelago. The Land of the Orang-utang and the Bird of Paradise. Europeans were mesmerized by the red bird of paradise, as it reminded them of … Continue reading

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Edo and Meiji Kogai Sticks

Earlier Meiji kogai sticks were long and flat, with gold maki-e decorations on each edge. Edo kogai sticks were shorter and thicker, carved just at the top. These Meiji tortoiseshell sticks come from The Creative Museum, while the Edo lacquer … Continue reading

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Ebay France: August Bonaz Cloud Comb — Faints :-)

Following the love of clouds and wind in Japanese combs, August Bonaz put a French Art Deco twist to this design, where his clouds have small tines to symbolize rain. Bonaz was trying to tell us that “Every cloud has … Continue reading

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Egyptian Ivory Comb: Before the Old Kingdom

The Old Kingdom refers to Egypt, 3000 BC, when the country reached its first peak of civilization. However, historians date this comb to a few hundred years before that, and shows Egyptian art before recorded history. It is an ivory … Continue reading

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Ebay: Russian Comb by Faberge Workmaster Erik Kollin

A tortoiseshell comb with an 18K gold bar decorated with rose- and white-gold sculpted flowers is selling for $1650 on Ebay France. It comes in its original box, with the maker’s name. EK: Erik August Kollin, Fabergé’s Finnish head workmaster … Continue reading

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