WITH giant sales every three weeks, Keys (10% buyer's premium) of Aylsham will cheerfully put two-figure lots under the hammer, but there were also a number of four-figure sellers to help swell the hammer total to £110,000 at the latest 1640-lot outing on June 2-3.
One of the most unusual highlights was a late 19th century Art Nouveau garniture by Rozenburg comprising an 18in (46cm) high trefoil clock and a pair of matching vases. The predominantly mauve and green garniture was painted with scrolling foliage with ochre and pale lemon detail. The clock lacked its pendulum, and one of the vases had some damage but then collectors almost expect this in the notoriously delicate eggshell porcelain.
It remained a highly decorative entry and caught the eye of a lady in the room who went into battle against a London dealer on the phone.
Bought by the private vendor in the early 1990s for £1200 from a local saleroom, it sold to the dealer at £4000.
The London trade also outbid a local hopeful on the most expensive entry: a mid-18th century oak Shropshire dresser with a plate-rack back and a base fitted with three drawers over a shaped apron.
Measuring 6ft 4 1/4in x 6ft 8in (1.94m x 2.03m), it was consigned from a Norfolk farmhouse. Keys specialist Paul Goodley had thought it might make £5000 and was happily surprised with the £6400 winning bid.
Good-quality oak continues to hold its price while other sectors of the faltering furniture market struggle. Here, a three-drawer, 18th century, oak dresser base with cabriole supports realised £2000 and an 18th century oak corner cupboard made £1600.
The ceramic section was notable for a 7in (18cm) high Beswick model of a Sussex Cockerel number 1899. In good condition, it took flight at £980.
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