Norman and Ernest Spittle Pewtal ash tray


An unusual ash tray in “Pewtal” attributed to Norman and Ernest Spittle, circa 1905.

The ash tray has a hammered finish and is unexpectedly light in the hand. The underside is stamped “Art Fittings Ltd, London” and “Pewtal (Registered)”.

My research on the metalworkers, Norman and Ernest Spittle, has all but proven that Art Fittings Ltd of Westminster, London, was in fact a retail outlet for the Birmingham firm. I am fortunate enough to have an early catalogue by the Spittle brothers and they describe their registered material “Pewtal”:

Pewtal or PEWter ALuminium is a grey-white metal combining the beautiful colour of old pewter with the strength and lightness of aluminium. But although resembling both Pewter and Aluminium it is without the disadvantages of these metals and can be worked by hand with an artistic resultant “feeling” equal to that of copper craftsmanship and (unlike Pewter) can be applied for Fire Place Canopies and in the making of Electric Light Fittings.

My recent news article discussed the link between Gustav Stickley and the Spittles. This piece adds further weight to this argument and is most likely another of the items purchased from Art Fittings Ltd by Stickley during his visit to England in 1903. A near identical design of ash tray in hammered copper is shown in Stickley’s 1905 metalwork catalogue (No. 271).


Dimensions:   Diameter of 6 3/4″

Condition:   Good

Price:   Sold