THE HOUSE OF FABREGE was known primarily as jeweller to the Czars of Russia. The jewellery house executed creations for all the Czars and nobility of Imperial Russsia including, rings, necklaces, brooches, tiny jewel encrusted boxes, cigarette cases and many more fantastic pieces worthy of those who could afford them.
In the latter part of the Nineteenth Century their most famous creations became the now world renowned Fabrege Eggs.
These eggs were the brainchild of Peter Carl Fabrege. As a small child, Peter took little interest in the family business, but instead, climbed into the word of Leonardo DaVinci. Peter was always amazed that the world still saw him as just an artist and not the engineering and creative genius that he undoubtedly was. Throughout his teenage years, Peter continued to absorb DaVinci’s genius, not consciously aware of how closely their two talents were aligned. One man’s genius just lay on a much larger scale than the other’s.
When talks of flying across the skies began, he ate up everything that he could find about these new adventures, recognizing in their genius, the same traits as his own hero, DaVinci. He was especially intrigued by the work of an American named Alexander Graham Bell. Then there were the Wright Brotherss, Rickenbocker, and Hawker. Oh how he’d love to take to the skies , soar like an eagle and float like a butterfly.
He had just finished presenting the most important commission ever to come into the House of Fabrege. He had personally delivered it to the Winter palace in St. Petersburg. It was called The Spring Egg and was to be gifted to the Czarina Alexandria in time for Easter. In Russia, Easter was the most special of all celebrations and in the Fabrege tradition, the eggs must contain a surprise. This particular egg had taken eighteen months to complete. Artistry is such a faint word to describe the workings of this particular egg. It was the twentieth that he had created and out did all the others in every way,
The egg itself was merely five inches tall and stood on a three inch, pink gold pedestal that seemed to cradle the egg in a bed of spun gold.
The egg was encrusted with four thousand pink cushion-cut diamonds, opened with a clasp of a single Russian Amythest, cleverly hinged and cut to look like a tiny lavender-coloured chick. Another amythest chick adorned the top of the egg.
The true artistry was inside, however, and one can only imagine the gifted hands that could create such mastery with tiny jewels, metals, and enamels.
Upon opening, several tiny chicks, with their little beaks open, sang a lovely, soft but unreognizable tune. Each of the seven chicks were represented by the colours of spring and cut from the finest of gems. Pale, soft, even gentle, they were the perfect symbols of Easter.
On the back of the egg, there was a cleverly hidden tiny knob, that when pressed showed that very special Fabrege surprise. The golden bed which held the chicks disappeared to reveal a garden of such delight that even the Czar, himself, lost his breath for a moment.
An undulating meadow of green gold, grew tiny crocuses in every colour that Mother Nature had ever created. Gold-tipped tiny diamonds, representing dew-drops, topped the blades of grass and exuberant flowers. A single multi-coloured butterfly flew through the flowers seemingly on it’s own wing power, so fine was the strand of gold that kept it aloft.
The Czar was over the moon with happiness and Peter was equally ecstatic as he rode off in the Czar’s private rail car back to Paris.
Once there, he quickly penned a note to Mr. Bell, telling him to expect him within the month and began to pack a bag for America. They would then both travel on to Nova Scotia together to work on the flying machines.
That was the last egg that Peter Fabrege ever created.
NOTE: There is no Spring Egg in the Fabrege Collection and Peter Carl Fabrege went on to create fifty eggs for the Russian Royal Family in total, forty-two of which are still in known existence.