Fan dancers

The Silent Eye

File:Folding Fan LACMA M.67.8.115 (1 of 2).jpg

I used to collect antique fans… I have a thing about them. Ever since I saw my great-grandmother’s little fan in the china cabinet as a girl, I have wondered about their stories. Grandma’s fan was a simple affair; pierced ivory brisé, threaded with a faded yellow ribbon to hold the sticks together and still wearing the ribbon hanging-loop she used to carry it over her wrist. She was a handsome woman when I knew her, already in her sixties when I was born, but there were some old, faded photographs of a young woman who had been more than handsome. Born when Queen Victoria was on the throne, she grew to womanhood  through the Edwardian era, she was married when George V became king. To a small child, this was ancient history! And Granny had been there!

It was with real excitement that I used to wait for…

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