the XVIII century, craftsmen realized corkscrews associated with figural
ornaments. The hardness of the metals made their work quite difficult
and imprecise. Pocket and “T” corkscrews were the first
to receive decorative designs.
the XIX century, figural elements were more commonly used thanks to
some softer metals as brass, bronze or silver. Soon, the handle disappears
and is replaced by figural art. The functional aspect of the corkscrew
is then often pushed into the background. It is moreover for that reason
that collectors are less interested in figural models than mechanical
ones, which were specially studied to ease the cork removal.
figural mechanical corkscrews can be found, but they are extremely rare.
Until years 50, a multitude of items decorated with characters or animals
were produced by the American, French, Italian, German, Scandinavian
the second half of the XIX century, the French produced erotic corkscrews,
the German produced pocket models as the “ladies legs” made
of celluloid, and more others…
Since the XX century,
with the coming out of Art Deco and Art Nouveau, factories were exploiting
ornaments up to a point that they were forgetting the most essential:
the functionality of the object. Some worms without their shaft were
even becoming a simple add to an ornament, resulting in a totally ineffective
corkscrew. We can find, in large quantity, simple corkscrews decorated
with animal motifs that were highly exploited in England.
was also used because of its softness. Scandinavian manufactures were
the pioneers in this field (Viking ship, fish, cock …).
United -States were not staying backwards with the period of prohibition
imposed by senator Volstead. The Syracuse Ornamental realized lots of
wooden models (Syroco Wood) (see picture).
Italy, aluminum is used for the manufacture of double lever corkscrews
produced in 1959 and designed by Carlo Gemelli (see picture).
manufactures are not neglecting the decorative aspect, but keep trying
not to forget the real functionality of the corkscrew.
aware of false or copies because some recent models are available on