Dahling…sashay on into my salon and pull up a chair. Cigarette? No? Well, hold on a minute while I light mine and then we’ll talk. (Ok…imagine the sultry voice of Mae West here. LOL!)
From the latter part of the 1800’s into the mid 1900’s, smoking was often considered to be glamorous and sophisticated. Novels, and later, movies portraying the romantic and mysterious allure of smokers contributed to the huge demand for tobacciana items.
One highly popular item around the turn of the century, especially in Europe, was the Parlor Smoking Set. They were often made of majolica, porcelain or cast metal. Smoking Sets can be found decorated with transfer scenes or handpainted florals. The Set could consist of several pieces or one piece with various sections.
This particular Smoking Set, made of porcelain and glazed a soft shade of green, was made sometime around 1900-1910 in Austria. It’s decorated with handpainted pink flowers and gold trim .
There are three sections in the Smoking Set…one is used to hold matches…
The largest section is for the cigarettes…
And one section is for the spent matches.
On the back of the section for holding the matches are these handpainted letters – MOK. Maybe the initials of the artist? I have no idea.
Parlor Smoking Sets similar to mine can be difficult to find online…for the simple reason many people don’t realize exactly what they are.
When I purchased this one, the seller had no idea what it was and had suggested perhaps it was made to use on the dining table to hold salt and pepper. Hmmm, I suppose it could be used for that purpose if you really wanted to.