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Casing Out Faberge

November 29, 1998|BOOTH MOORE

In light of the recent increase in the cigarette tax, smoking could soon become a luxury habit. And what better place to store your nic fix than in a jewel-encrusted Faberge cigarette case?

Russia's House of Faberge is perhaps most renowned for its bejeweled imperial Easter eggs, but it also created many other objects, including animals, clocks and, especially, cigarette cases.

Collectors include heavy-hitting celebs Ivana Trump, the late Malcolm Forbes, Elizabeth Taylor and Aaron Spelling. But even if you don't have the bucks to pack a Faberge case, you can still ogle. John Traina shares his collection (the largest in the world) in a new picture book, "The Faberge Case" (Harry Abrams Inc.). Each case is handcrafted, unique in size and shape and made from precious metals and gemstones, enamels, wood, glass, crystal and leather.

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