How to spot a fake Argy-Rousseau moth paperweight

My goal is to publish new posts twice a week — Mondays and Thursdays. However, if you don’t see a new post on Thursday, it’s because I was too busy, so please look for a new one the following Monday.


Reproduction Argy-Rousseau moth paperweight

A colleague/dealer from California was suspicious about an “Argy-Rousseau” pâte-de-verre moth paperweight he had purchased, so he emailed me photos for authentication.

The signature on the fake paperweight

The easiest way to tell a fake is the signature. Take a look above at the poorly hand-engraved letters of different thicknesses and matte finish. Now take a look at the photo below of an authentic signature. Each letter is shiny, with even width and depth. The signature was in the mold and not hand-engraved.

An authentic Argy-Rousseau signature (from a vase)

An authentic Argy-Rousseau moth paperweight

Now go back to the first photograph and take a look at the rest of the fake paperweight. It has a dull semi-matte finish with a grainy texture to the moths, unlike the shinier, smoother authentic paperweight. If you could hold both of them in your hands, the differences would be even more striking. And now you know the rest of the story. (Spoken slowly and with emphasis by Paul Harvey.)

Monday’s blog will be another lesson on French glass fakes. This time the subject will be a “Gallé” marquetry vase.


It’s almost time to travel to Chicago for our next show, the revived Chicago Antiques + Art + Design Show at the Chicago Merchandise Mart. I was quite sad when it folded a few years ago as it was always one of my favorite shows. The new edition will have a new promoter, Dolphin Promotions, headed by Rosemary Krieger. There hasn’t been an antique show in downtown Chicago for several years, so I’m hoping this one will be met with a lot of enthusiasm. The show runs from May 18-21, 2017.

I recently listed over 15 new items on my website and I’ll be listing more in the near future. Please check my site as often as you can.

Click here to check my website for the latest items and to look around. I will update it as often as time permits. We’re still very much in business between shows, so please don’t hesitate to email or call. I always strive to offer the finest objects for sale on my website and at every show. There are many items for sale, sold items with prices and free lessons about glass and lamps. And remember to keep reading my blog.

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