Miniature of the Month
Pitcher and Goblets by Jens Torp
One-twelfth-scale reproduction of Browning family heirloom pitcher and goblets by Jens Torp on sideboard by David Booth.
This month’s featured items are special for many reasons, but first and foremost because of the original items’ history. The sterling silver pitcher and goblets have been in the family of my husband, Louis Browning, for more than 100 years. These sentimental silver items were more than likely given as a wedding gift to Lou’s grandmother, Laura Thomas Browning, as the pitcher bears her monogram, LTB. She married Samuel Pearce Browning of Maysville, Kentucky, in 1898, which helps to date the set. Crafted using the repoussé method, the lovely grapevine design was achieved by hammering the reverse side of the metal to create the artwork in low relief.
I have long admired the silver which graces our table for special occasions. And Lou, being quite familiar with my passion and occasionally surprising me with pieces he feels would enhance the collection, thoughtfully commissioned Jens Torp to make the pitcher and goblets in miniature as a birthday gift for me last year.
Jens used the lost wax method to make the miniature silver pieces since the repoussé method would not have been feasible in one-twelfth scale. The Danish-born metalsmith, who now lives in England, was a jewelry designer before turning his skills to miniatures in the early 1990s. Now, three decades later he’s known around the world for heirloom quality period silver reproductions, limited edition and one-of-a-kind pieces reflecting work of silversmiths from the 16th century through the Art Nouveau period.
Other pieces by Jens in the KSB Miniatures Collection include a stunning 18th century sewing etui, silver bellows in the Great Chamber of Savage Manor, a reproduction of an 18K gold and blue enamel urn which resides in Windsor Castle (ours is in the collection’s fine arts rotunda), several silver and gold Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian tea sets and candelabra, a Georgian wine service, a sterling silver and porcelain tureen created with Henny Staring-Egberts and two beautiful basket weave jardinières, both featured in the Dining Room of Spencer House. He also created a French horn, trumpet and trombone for the collection’s display of musical instruments.