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Mary Knight Sterling Silver Tea Strainer, c. 1915

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This is a stunning tea strainer and wonderful example of Arts & Crafts silver by Mary Knight whose silver is very rare. The flat edge has a striking naturalistic design of repeating leaves and flowers. The bowl is beautifully pierced with a repousséd central floral design. The delicately shaped wood handle is most likely ebony. The collar which the handle is pinned to is engraved on the back 'HHS' in Gothic lettering.

Mary Knight came from Gorham's design department and supervised the Handicraft Shop of Wellesley Hills, Massachusetts which was an early outgrowth of Boston's Society for Arts and Crafts. She had several of the artisans there execute her designs. She worked alongside many of them, letting them raise the vessels and applying the decoration herself.

Her chased decoration is highly unusual in that it is comprised of strikes from small leather working tools, rather than the traditional chasing tools of the silver trade. (See The Art that is Life Ed. by Wendy Kaplan.)

This wonderful sterling tea strainer is marked with Mary Knight's logo and 'STERLING'. It measures 4 inches round and 7.75 across the handle. It is in very good condition with a small area of restoration where the handle joins the bowl.