Posts Tagged ‘porcelain’

Royal Crown Derby footed dish, c.1905

Sunday, February 10th, 2019

This porcelain serving dish was made in England by Royal Crown Derby in 1905. It is hand painted in the Imari palette of cobalt blue, iron red, and gilt. On the underside is a red printed mark ROYAL CROWN DERBY, ENGLAND with cypher and an incised mark DERBY, 7-04, dating it to 1905. It measures 10 inches by 7 inches and is 1.75 inches high.

Although two painted metal staples on top of one of the handles hint at what is hiding below deck, it isn’t until this pretty dish is flipped over that things gets more interesting. After this dish fell to the floor and shattered into 9 pieces, it was taken to a china mender, who made it whole again by drilling 68 tiny holes and adding 34 metal staples. Typically china menders charged per staple, so this repair job must have cost the owner a pretty penny.

Porcelain plate with peaches & flowers, c.1880

Sunday, January 20th, 2019

There is nothing terribly exciting or special about this small plate, but the rustic repair is impressive. It was made in China in the late 1800s to early 1900s and is decorated with hand painted peaches and lotus flowers in the Famille Rose palette. It measures nearly 7 inches in diameter and has a squiggle signature on the underside.

The 10 small iron bits, 5 on each side of the plate, are clearly visible and add an interesting graphic element. Again, not a particularly rare plate, but these unusual repairs elevate it to another level.

Porcelain cup with metal handle, c.1800

Sunday, January 6th, 2019

Last weekend I was traveling back from Southeast Asia and didn’t get the chance to wish you all a Happy New Year. The image on this charming cup seems to be an appropriate way to welcome 2019, so Happy New Year…one week later!

This porcelain Bute shape cup has hand painted decoration en grisaille (shades of gray) of a young boy tooting a horn. It has gilt bands around the rim and base. Cup measures 2.25 inches high, with an opening diameter of 3 inches.

Much like a 1980s mullet – though a lot more attractive – this cup is business in front, party in the back. The bronze handle, which replaced the original broken one over 100 years ago, is unseen from the front but clearly visible from the side and back. The underside has a cobalt blue mark, suggesting the cup is Continental or English. If anyone knows for sure, please let me know.

Delft teapot with metal handle, c.1720

Sunday, October 14th, 2018

This Dutch (or perhaps English?) globular form tin-glazed earthenware teapot, dates to around 1720. It is decorated with hand painted flowers and birds in glazes of blue, red, and green on a white ground and measures 5 inches high and 7.25 inches wide from handle to spout.

Over 150 years ago, its original loop handle was replaced with a slightly more elaborate metal replacement handle with thumb rest. More recently, red string was added to keep the handle and lid from going their separate ways.

This teapot of similar form and decoration suggests what the original handle on mine might have looked like.

Photo courtesy of The Fitzwilliam Museum

Rose Medallion coffee pot, c.1890

Sunday, August 12th, 2018

This bulbous form porcelain coffee pot was made in China during the Qing dynasty, circa 1850-1890. It is decorated with figures, birds, butterflies and flowers in the Rose Medallion palette, including green, pink, yellow, blue, black and gold enamels. It measures 7.25 inches high and 8 inches wide from handle to spout.

At first glance you may wonder why this seemingly “perfect” pot has made its way into my collection. But look closely and you will find a couple of large cracks on the the sides, held tightly together with the aid of 3 large metal grooved staples. It is neither exceptional nor rare, but I like it because it has kept its dignity intact after surviving a tumble well over 100 years ago.

Here’s a similar coffee pot, along with a matching sugar bowl and creamer.

Photo courtesy of Ruby Lane

Chinese teapot with monogram & multiple repairs, c.1780

Sunday, July 1st, 2018

This globular porcelain teapot was made in China for export, possibly for the French market, during the last quarter of the Qianlong period (1711-1799.) It measures nearly 5.5 inches high and is 8.75 inches wide from handle to spout. The delicate armorial decoration on each side consists of a gilt monogram (JEM) suspended from a shield surrounded by floral garlands and ribbons. The chipped lid has a peach shaped knob and is decorated with flowers.

It appears that on more than one occasion over the past 200+ years, this fragile teapot was rushed to surgery. The multiple repairs include a silver plated replacement spout with scalloped backplate, an iron replacement handle with a pleasing green patina, and 2 metal staples securing cracks on the body. Every surface of this noble survivor bears scars, which to me, makes it even more attractive and unique.

Chinese teapot with wicker handle, c.1760

Sunday, April 22nd, 2018

This globular form porcelain teapot was made in China, c.1750-1770, where it was decorated with flowers and leaves in blue under glaze. Soon after it was exported to the Netherlands, ceramics with simple blue and white decoration fell out of favor, and more colorful designs were the new trend. To keep up with the demand, this teapot was overpainted with birds and flowers in red, green, black, and gold enamels. Amsterdams Bont (colorful [work] from Amsterdam) is the term used to describe this form of decoration. Pieces with overpainted decoration done in England at around the same time are referred to as being clobbered. Teapot measures 4.75 inches high, 6.5 inches from handle to spout.

As if the skittish overpainted decoration isn’t enough for me, this teapot has an unusual woven wicker replacement handle and straps, which make it a grand slam. I have only come across a handful of entirely woven repairs/replacements, which were most likely done by basket makers, rather than tinkers or jewelers. Take a look at these other examples with similarly woven handles: Large jug with woven handle, c.1820 and Pearlware blue & white cream jug, c.1820.

This teapot of similar form shows what the original handle on mine might have looked like.

Photo courtesy of M. Ford Creech

Chinese tea canister, c.1700

Sunday, April 8th, 2018

This porcelain tea canister is simply stunning. It was made in China during the Kangxi period (1662-1722) and is decorated with blue underglaze enamel depicting mountainous landscapes on both sides. The ends are painted with flowers among jagged rocks. It measures 4.75 inches high, 3 inches wide, 2 inches deep.

It is unusual to find tea canisters with their original lids so I am not surprised that this one has a metal replacement. Then again, if it had its original lid I would not have bought it! Having seen dozens of tea canisters with replacement lids made from various materials including silver, tin, and wood, I find this simple cylindrical bronze replacement the perfect topper.

This tea canister with similar form and decorations shows what the original lid might have looked like on mine.

Photo courtesy of Pinterest

Riveted Chinese Imari plate, c.1760

Sunday, March 4th, 2018

This porcelain plate was made in China during the Qianlong period (1736-95) and measures nearly 9 inches in diameter. It has a central motif of branches and flowers in the Japanese Imari palette of cobalt blue underglaze with red and gold overglaze washes. A fine plate, in my humble opinion, but not an extraordinary example by any means.

But…when the plate is turned over, the true beauty and the reason that I purchased it for my collection, is revealed. 34 small brass staples, seen only on the underside, clamp together the 8 broken pieces as tight as when the repair was done, over 200 years ago. Even though stapling, aka riveting, is the most common form of inventive repair, I still marvel at examples such as this. And naturally, I would proudly display it with the “wrong” side out.

Chinese mug with large replacement handle, c.1770

Sunday, February 25th, 2018

This cylindrical form porcelain mug was made in China during the third quarter of the eighteenth century. It is decorated in the Nanking pattern with trees, birds, pagodas and boats, using cobalt blue underglaze enamel. It measures 4.75 inches high with a 3.5 inch opening.

It appears that this mug has a story to tell, as its original strap handle has gone astray and is now fitted with a rusty iron replacement. Perhaps a bar room brawl resulted in the loss, or someone dropped the mug while clearing the table, or during a wash-up. We may never know for sure how the deed was done but I am thankful the owner had the good sense to have a tinker replace the handle, rather than throw out the broken mug. Isn’t it remarkable that this chipped survivor from 250 years ago is still able to engaging us and stir our imaginations?

This mug with similar form and decoration shows what the original strap handle might have looked like.

Photo courtesy of eBay