These large glass beadwork screens would have hung on a clamp apparatus with hinged extending arm to create an adjustable barrier for someone seated near the fireplace. Smaller ones were made up into hand-held face screens, but this size worked best to protect a lady seated at her needlework, for instance, where hands needed to be free. This one is entirely glass beads, worked one at a time in something like a needlepoint stitch. And this one is nearly pristine. The canvas remains supple, and while I wouldn't use it for a pillow top that will be lounged upon a whole lot, it will make up into a gloriously opulent one for decorator use. I envision it on a bed. The beaded portion is 14.5" wide and 18" long to the point of the bottom of shield-shaped form, or 15.5" long to the beginning of the outer curve. Most people use the entire shield form for a large pillow, often atop larger panel of silk or velvet, then added fringe.
Very good to excellent condition for age and type. It is early-mid Victorian, c.1840s, and every tiny bead is brilliant with color. It's cloudy here today so it's not shimmering its color as it would on a sunnier day for photos. No flash used. There are gold metallic beads used, too. And as you can see, there is a generous canvas remaining around the beadwork to make the process of making it up into a down-filled and opulent throw pillow a much easier project. These are fun, and go together easily and without much serious skill needed. You can do it!
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