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A handsome faux tortoiseshell back comb with gold inlay and ceramic decorative roundel.

CONDITION: good vintage condition

SIZE: 4 ins h x 4¼ ins w (10 x 11 cms)

APPROXIMATE DATE: 1890s – 1900s



This beautiful back comb is made from a dark variety of celluloid faux tortoiseshell. It is decorated with a beautiful Art Nouveau inspired design in gilding and inset brass. The back of the heading indicated that the inlay is done in 18 kt gold.

The design features a leaf motif which is inlaid in gold leaf. This is further emphasized by brilliant clear rhinestones which appear to have lost none of their sparkle over the years.

The most prominent feature of the heading is the ceramic painted medallion which is set into the centre of it. The metal circle is attached to the celluloid base by a rivet which is sunk into the material and visible from the back. It features a pseudo 18th century lady who is being wooed by a gentleman.

The first Art Nouveau ornaments were hand made and carved from clarified horn and other materials. As the Art Nouveau style gained in popularity, a whole class of popular jewellery was mass produced this reproduced the typical motifs of the genre, but was produced by machine. These latter are usually made in celluloid faux tortoiseshell with decorations of pierced brass or silver tone metal, set with glass or ceramic stones.


Combs like this were known as back combs because they were intended to be worn at the back of the head. They are typically deeply curved to fit the skull and are typically wider than they are tall. They have a broad shallow heading which gives scope for some kind of decorative treatment.

The final picture is taken from a popular coloured postcard of the early 20th century and shows a sitter dressed in exotic oriental influenced fashion. She is wearing a large and elaborate back comb in her hair.

Item ID: A14-08-04



Frequently asked questions about DragonsLairVintage

Other payment methods may be available depending upon location. We accept payment by check from UK buyers and bank transfer from UK and EU buyers. Please contact us for

LAYAWAYS: payments may be made by installment plan for goods valued at over $100

We require a 25% deposit which is non refundable in the event buyer does not complete the plan.

Installments are usually completed by our sending a Paypal Money Request at agreed intervals.

RESERVED ITEMS: we can reserve items for upto 48 hours free of charge. For longer reservations a $20 reserved fee (deducted from item price) applies.

For deadlines please contact us BEFORE purchase to ensure that we can meet your timeline. We can arrange expedited delivery at extra cost. Transactions cannot be cancelled once the package ships.

It is buyer's responsibility to notify us that they wish to cancel the transaction if it is unlikely we can meet their timeline.

It is buyer's responsibility to ensure that the address supplied at checkout by Etsy and/or Paypal is correct current address formatted in accordance with the postal regulations of their country. We don’t accept responsibility or refund for lost or delayed packages due to incorrect address information.
Buyers MUST inform us within 14 days of receipt (as evidenced by tracking) that they wish to return an item. Timeframe is strictly applied.

For "buyers remorse returns" (i.e. goods returned for reasons where we were not at fault) we refund only the purchase price and not original or return shipping.

For returns where we were at fault (we sent incorrect item, one which we agree was significantly mis-described or damaged in transit) we refund outward and return shipping by a similar service to what we used

There is a NO RETURNS policy on some large and/or delicate items because of the risk of damage due to poor packing during transit. We don’t accept returns on AS FOUND or sale goods.
1) Goods must be carefully packed so as not to sustain damage. We will not refund for items damaged due to poor packing.

2) They must be returned to us in "same condition as sent" unless we have been supplied with photographic evidence that item was damaged in outward transit.

3) Goods must not be altered or amended in any way.

4) We recommend buyer obtain proof of postage and use a trackable shipping method.

5) No refund can be issued until the goods are back in our hands in "same condition as sent".

6) Goods which are lost or damaged in transit are the responsibility of the sender who will need to claim compensation from their mail carrier. We dont refund for returned goods lost/damaged in mail,

The package must be clearly marked - preferably on the customs label - RETURNED UNWANTED GOODS NO IMPORT TAX PAYABLE.

Should we incur customs/VAT/handling charges or other out of pocket expenses these will nevertheless be deducted from any refund due to the buyer. This is regardless of whether or not the package is suitably marked or whether it is a buyers remorse or "our fault" return.

Violation of our returns process may result in the return being refused and returned to sender.

s policy.
Buyer must supply clear photographic evidence of damage within 14 days of notification.

It MUST be sent as a jpg attached to Etsy convo or email. We are unable to accept pictures sent to a celphone via sms or mms.

Merchandise which sustained damage may not need to be returned if photographic evidence is supplied and claim is notified within the above 7 day period. "Notified" means that you sent us a convo or email to indicate a problem.

Buyers unable to provide photographic evidence must return the item at their expense.

Buyers should exercise reasonable care with vintage items. Under no circumstances will we refund or be held responsible for items which arrive safely and are subsequently damaged in use.
Buyers should carry out the following procedures:-

1) Check physically to ensure package not left in unlikely place

2) enquire of family members/neighbours or doorman (if appropriate)

3) contact their local postmaster/mailing service/mail carrier

4) If appropriate file a police or mail theft report.

Where the status of a tracked item shows the package to be "delivered" our insurers will require the buyer to produce documentary evidence of non receipt before considering a refund claim.

We would require a physical letter from the postal authority concerned (not a scan or photo copy) confirming that they have made an error in their notifications and that the package has been mis-delivered.
We do not refund shipping (either outward or return) for packages which are returned to us because buyer refused delivery or did not "claim" the package. By claim we mean picked up from postal depot or arrangements made to redeliver.

Such packages are treated as "abandoned" by the postal service and are usually returned to sender.

"Returned to sender" packages are typically given low priority by postal services and may take many weeks to return to us. In some cases the package is never returned.

No refund can or will be issued until the goods are returned to our premises.

On return buyers will be given the choice of a refund of item price only or of having the item/s reshipped at their expense.
We try to note all flaws which might affect the appearance, value or functionality of a piece. However it would be impractical to mention every minor scratch or abrasion on a pre-owned item. These latter are part of the history of the piece.

Photographs are an important part of the description and should be examined carefully. Flaws or features which are clearly visible in one or more photographs are considered to have been disclosed even if not specifically mentioned in descriptions.

Buyers are expected to carefully read descriptions and examine pictures and are assumed to have done so regardless of whether or not this is actually the case.

When in doubt questions can (and should) be asked to clarify any doubts.
Minor surface wear or the odd dull or missing rhinestone on a vintage item (especially if not immediately apparent) do NOT constitute grounds for "substantially mis-described".

Removable dirt: we do not clean or repair vintage pieces unless they are extremely dirty as many collectors prefer to do these themselves.

Examples of substantially mis-described are:-

item described as "sterling" or "silver" shown to be silver plated or base metal.

A jewellery item has a broken catch or fastening not mentioned and cannot safely be worn.

An obvious repair/restoration or break not mentioned which substantially affects the value, durability functionality or appearance of the piece.

Antique Hair Comb Victorian Gold inlaid with Ceramic Pastoral Scene Hair Accessory Hair Pin Hair Pick Hair Slide Headdress


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Order summary



  • Vintage item from 1900 - 1909
  • Materials: faux tortoiseshell, ceramic, gilding, rhinestones
  • Ships worldwide from United Kingdom
  • Feedback: 89 reviews
  • Favorited by: 60 people

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