English papier mache Gilded papier-mâché began to appear in 1725 in Europe. In 1772 Henry Clay patented a process for treating laminated sheets of paper with linseed oil to produce waterproof panels.
By 1837 there were around 25 companies in England producing papier mache. The most common pieces were trays made as decorative plates typically used at tea time to hold small cakes or biscuits.
In 1847 Theodore Jennens patented a process for steaming and pressing these laminated sheets into various shapes, which were then used to manufacture small furniture parts as well as trays.
Many collectable trays are black lacquered made in Japan in the early part of the 20th century. These were mass produced especially for the English market, where objects depicting scenes from the Orient were fashionable.
Florentine Papier Mache Hand made in Florence Italy, Florentine style papier mache is a centuries-old tradition maintained by several artisan guilds.
Designs are typically gold gilded, or have gold paint applied to resemble gilding. These became popular during the late Victorian era and the style and crafts still remain today.
Ideal as first anniversary gifts which represents paper.