Thursday, March 24, 2016

Happy Easter! And A New Blog Day

It's been much, much too long since I've visited this little blog of mine, and I've found lately that I really miss it (especially getting to discover and research some heroines in history).  It's a great break from deadline writing, so I am back here again, hopefully starting out with a couple posts a week, and maybe a giveaway or two in the near future.

To start out--happy Easter weekend, everyone!  I love this time of year, when the flowers start to peek out, the trees start to bud, and little girls wear their fluffy holiday dresses and white shoes (I always insisted on getting my spring clothes Easter weekend, even if it was still 40 degrees outside!).  To celebrate, here's a little look at my very favorite Easter egg of all--Faberge's Winter Egg of 1913.

From 1885 to just before 1917, the workshops of Faberge created two Imperial Easter eggs every year, one each for the tsar's mother, Dowager Empress Marie, and his wife, Empress Alexandra.  (There were a handful of non-royal eggs, as well).  Out of about 50 made, 43 are known to survive, and each one is an exquisite masterpiece.  My personal favorite is the Winter Egg, made for Empress Marie in 1913.  At the time, it was the most expensive of the eggs, costing 25,000 rubles (about $12,000); it vanished for many years, only to be bought in 2002 by the Emir of Qatar for 6.4 million pounds.

The Winter Egg was designed by Alma Pihl, the only female designer at Faberge, and was created from rock crystal fashioned to look like ice patterns, on a crystal base that appeared to be melting.  It used 1660 diamonds to create a snow-like sparkle.  The "surprise" inside the egg was a basket of flowers made of quartz on a bed of gold moss, made with 1378 more diamonds.  It's very elegant, just like the Dowager Empress herself (who is a favorite of mine!)

Here's a great overview of all the known Easter eggs.  Which is your favorite??


knye said...

I love the lilies of the valley egg. I've seen the two at the Walters Art Gallery here in Baltimore many times. They are as beautiful in person as you hope they would be.

Amanda McCabe/Amanda Carmack/Laurel McKee said...

I saw a few in a Marjorie Merriweather Post exhibit (as well as the little diamond wedding crown) and they were amazing! I would love to see the lilies of the valley egg, or the Danish Palace egg