Roger is a World War I history buff and likes to collect militaria from that era, particularly helmets. He had been looking for some pieces of trench art to add to his collection, and this year he struck gold.
Trench art can be a pretty broad category, but Roger was specifically looking for items that were made from shell casings or the other detritus of war.
The lamp on the right came up at an auction earlier this summer. It is marked "Verdun" and is really a gorgeous piece. It did not have a shade when Roger bought it, so he added a period helmet from his collection to complete the piece. I have to chuckle, because the auction card showing what we paid has it described as "art deco lamp".
The vase on the left is new to his collection. We attended an auction a couple weeks ago that had three of these vases. Roger was positively dying to have at least one of them.
After a few hours of sitting, Roger needed to visit the restroom. Wouldn't you know? That's when they decided to bring the trench art pieces up to the block! My heart was in my throat. I knew I couldn't let them get away! I immediately started bidding with no idea what my maximum should be, let alone which of the three items I should choose if I won! Fortunately, Roger arrived part way through and took over. I asked him later why he chose the vase that he did. "I picked the one that looked the best." Well, shoot! I could have done that!
This piece is marked Reims and also has a floral design. It is also made from a shell casing. I can't really complain about either piece. They're both very attractive. (The flowers in the vase were Roger's doing. And, I have to giggle at the idea of him in Michael's trying to find poppies, when he wasn't really sure what poppies looked like, anyway!)