A continental enamelled silver novelty compact of a stylised Alfa Romeo 6C, probably Italian, circa 1929, estimate: £1000-£1500.
For classic car enthusiasts this novelty compact from the late ‘20s has a certain Scott Fitzgerald allure, with its James Young drophead coupé coachwork. The top is enamelled as the red bodied automobile, the rear spare tyre clamp unscrews for the scent reservoir, and the wheels hinge open to powder or rouge compartments. The window cabin conceals a lipstick, and the body springs open to another compartment with mirrored lid. Surely a perfect possession for The Great Gatsby’s Daisy Buchanan?
Production of Alfa Romeo’s 6C series started with the 1500 in 1927, the enlarged engine version, the 1750, apparently winning every major race it entered in 1929, including the Grands Prix of Belgium, Spain, Tunis and Monza, as well as the Mille Miglia, the Brooklands Double Twelve and the Ulster TT. This silver compact may well have been made as a promotional object for the company.