I've written so many times about the boutiques flanking the garden promenade at the old Palais Royal, palace of Cardinal Richelieu, you all already know the story. This is a trinket, souvenir, from someone's Grand Tour of Paris, first half of 1800s, and very likely from one of those boutiques. Such fun frivolous creativity has gone into these natural mother of pearl shell objects - from elaborate mechanical etui presenting sewing sets and/or perfume sets, to trinket ring holders or, as in this case, a "vide poche" (literally: empty pocket). Into this little stand at bedside or mantel would go one's pocket items, pocket watch, coins or jewelry. Charming, no?
Very good to excellent condition on this one, part of a collection we were able to purchased an estate disbursal in France. Watch for other pieces, too (sold separately). No chips, no cracks or hairlines in that nice-sized half-shell tray, and the substantial framework is in very fine condition, too, without any loss or damage. The hook for pocket watch remains fully intact, and you'll note the metal has a nice bamboo patterning to it. Measurements in full noted on the photos.