Silver bells and so much more. Jasmine Kaur takes a shine to the London Silver Vaults on Chancery Lane.
Silver lines the walls, objects are stacked precariously among each other; it takes a few seconds for my eyes to fully adjust to the array and begin to distinguish between each object: a gilded horn, antique candelabras, ruby rings, and goblets. Nothing is precocious here or simply on show, each object is waiting patiently for a new home.
Although at first it seems to be a chaotic maze of silver, each vault actually specialises in a particular field. For example, R Feldman hosts a wonderful range of unusual pieces from the late 20th century and I spot a sterling silver antelope gimbal lighter across the room that supports this claim. All of the vaults are run by independent sellers and are true experts in what they do – within minutes I’m taught how to distinguish between silver-plate and solid silver. In case you’re wondering, it’s the colour and lack of hallmark.
Japanese silver, birds, precious butterflies – as I walk through the vaults it’s all slightly overwhelming yet wonderful. If you’re looking for a present I couldn’t think of a better place. Even with no intention of buying anything that evening, I found myself making a mental note of potential gifts for others – and perhaps an early one for myself! You can have a look online to admire some on the items, but truly it’s a place you have to visit to get the full experience.
The London Silver Vaults are located at 53-64 Chancery Lane, WC2A 1QS. Find out more at silvervaultslondon.com.