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CONSERVATION CASE STUDY

Restoring the Sunflower Clock

A rare ‘Sunflower Clock’ has been conserved to its former brilliance by our conservation team. The remarkable gilt-bronze clock is shaped like a sunflower and mounted into the centre of a porcelain vase. It contains a bouquet of delicate porcelain flowers which date from the early 1750s.

Natural flowers were sometimes mingled with the porcelain examples. As the porcelain bouquet surrounding the clock can be entirely removed, it is possible that the porcelain flower stems were placed in the vase over the winter, to be replaced with real specimens during the summer months.

Over time some of the original porcelain flowers were lost or damaged. As part of conservation work new 18th-century flowers were added to replace missing pieces, and others were enlarged. The arrangement of the bouquet was also updated to match contemporary records. 

Discover more in our short film.


The income from your ticket contributes directly to The Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity. The aims of The Royal Collection Trust are the care and conservation of the Royal Collection, and the promotion of access and enjoyment through exhibitions, publications, loans and educational activities.