Q: At a recent visit to my Mom's house, I came across this item. No one had a clue what it could be. Can you help? It is 6 1/2 inches long and 1/2 inch high and is all one piece (no seams). It is stamped "Japan" on the inside.
A: It's a display stand for a cup and saucer. The cup sits on the flat part and the plate fits into the slot behind it. These were popular in the 1950s and were made in Japan for export to the United States and other countries. Display stands similar to yours, in a brass-colored metal with bird decorations, were made for Ardalt, an import company established in New York City in 1945. A single stand sells for about $10.