During the height of art nouveau from 1898-1902, three eggs were made: Lilies of the Valley with the portrait of Nicholas II and his young daughters, presented to Alexandra Fyodorovna (collection of fund 'Link of Times'), Pansy with miniatures of children and grandchildren of Empress Maria Fyodorovna on a tiny heart-shaped easel (private collection, USA) and the most poetic Easter present in the modern style, the Clover egg from the collection of the Moscow Kremlin Museums, presented to Alexandra Fyodorovna in 1902.

The egg is woven of fine golden filigree trefoils, whose petals are coated with diamond roses or filled with translucent enamel, shining like stained glass.  This enamel technique, termed the stained glass or window device, was highly complex. The secret was known only to leading Russian jewellery firms, and therefore the prize was rather high for that time – 8,750 rubles.  Among the delicate shiny clover petals, there are intertwined tiny ruby ribbons, gems symbolizing passionate love. The egg’s fine intricate stand is shaped like a gently curved stem with the clover leaves made of coloured and slightly greenish gold.

The surprise had been lost before the egg was brought to the museum, but in 1991 an invoice, drawn up by in the Cabinet of His Imperial Majesty in the Archives, was found. The source showed that a large four-leaved clover was placed inside the egg. Its petals were inlaid with 23 large rose-cut diamonds and decorated with four miniature portraits most likely of Tsar’s daughters. Since ancient times the four-leaved clover, which is very rare in nature, has been considered an emblem of good luck.  Thus, the refined Easter present symbolized the Emperor’s distant juvenile dream of the happy union with Alix, love and family. Carl Fabergé, whose artistic taste was infinitely trusted by Nicholas II, and the jewellers of his leading workshop, created a very touching work in a modern style. It apparently touched the heartstrings of the dreamy and somewhat exalted Alix, who had been reared in the spirit of Victorian sentimentalism.

The Clover egg was the last work of the brilliant jeweller Mikhail Perkhin to reach the Armoury collection. After 1903 his romantic, and occasionally a bit naïve Easter jewellery, marked by soft plasticity and picturesque, gave way to the cold and refined jewellery of Finnish native Henrik Wigström. A close associate of Perkhin, Wigström headed up the workshop after his death and earnestly carried on the work of designing a superb line of Easter masterpieces for the Fabergé firm.