Sunday, August 30, 2009

To Goodwood and beyond!

August Bank Holiday (31st August 2009) will be a morning spent at Goodwood - not for horseracing, but an antiques & collectables fair run by Arun Fairs. If you're there, please do leave some Powell Bishop & Stonier for me won't you.
Getting very excited about a big event happening in just under two weeks... i'm getting hitched! and going to Venice for a weeks honeymoon. But never fear, I shan't be coming home with any dreadful Murano glass souvenir tat.

one more for the shelf

a deco vase with cranes and flower design, handcoloured with enamels.

Monday, August 17, 2009

by comparison

after falling flat on face with a misattribution of a Brown Westhead Moore & Co comport to Powell & Bishop i set about trying to find any other of their wares that bore a resemblance to dear old P&B. Whilst i'll admit, these two vases are not similar in many ways, the similar shapes are quite obviously both classically inspired. The greco-roman influence is clear with their scrolling handles, but the puce transfer print on Oriental Ivory body of the P&B vase above is more English in it's influence than the formal swags and acanthus border of the B W M & Co version.
apologies for the very pixelly pic - the original was very small indeed.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Cheesey wotsits

The shape of the cheese dish above will be familiar to most people - a big horizontal wedge to accomodate a large hunk of the stinky stuff. But recently up for auction was the splendid example below: under the Oriental Ivory label and with handpainted transfer decoration, this upright wedge is quite unusual. Another shape of cheese dish that you find is a dome shape, but I have yet to see a (Powell) Bishop & Stonier version.

even MORE Fuji Yama!

Bought this vase last week to add to my Fuji Yama patterned wares. Here are some examples of the different colourway treatments.

learn to trust the label

A few weeks ago I bought the tureen below and pondered whether there should've been a lid with it, despite the label when I bought it saying "without lid". Well, above is the proof that yes it should have a lid as the shape is exactly the same, but with a different transfer pattern - this time from a series of London views.

Monday, August 10, 2009

testing the knowledge

I picked up this comport at an antiques/collectables fair in Midhurst last weekend and was drawn to it from across the room like a moth to a flame as I thought it could be by Powell Bishop & Stonier. The stall was being run by two sweet little old ladies who didn't seem to know much about any of their stock, but were very cheery and smiley nonetheless and were having a gay old time of it, chatting away and chewing on their packed lunch tuna sandwiches. Sadly, one didn't have to look too hard to spot that the comport had been severely damaged and stuck back together again with some very bad restoration, but at only £3 i wondered if it was worth taking a risk. I turned it over hoping to see a clear factory mark, but all i got was a diamond registration and some painted pattern numbers. No sign of an impressed caduceus or even a triangle mark so commonly found on the factory's pieces. The style, pattern and colour however screamed at me that it just MUST be by them(?)

I must admit, i am not 100% convinced - mainly because they were usually so prolific with their factory marks, but also because the screw/bolt that goes through the top plate and into the pedestal looks a bit crude. All the other compotes/tazzas i have by the factory are moulded in one piece or with the plate cemented onto a pedestal. This has been a marker point; I think i am now confident enough in my knowledge to take a stab at identifying unmarked pieces. It's a very tricky business and one which i'm sure most collectors will face at some point in their collecting careers. When do you start to trust your instincts and all your knowledge gained so far and make a judgment call? It could be that i will get egg on my face with this one. Do take a look and let me know what you think.

one way of checking would be to see if the diamond registration throws up any designs registered for that date. Sadly i don't have any books that would give me info as to who registered it, but i can tell you from checking on the potteries website that it was registered on 15h February 1870. So, it could only be by the Powell & Bishop partnership which ran for only a short period and not a later partnership.

invaluable

just had to share this great victorian tea for two set with you that sold at auction some time ago (i've been trawling the invaluable.com site for info about auction prices etc but sadly you have to be a fully paid up member to get that kind of info).

raspberries versus strawberries

After watching Valentine Warner's "What to eat now" programme on tv tonight, i was reminded to post pics of this great piece of Victoriana. Valentine was trying to convince his audience that raspberries are far superior fruit to strawberries and he made a delicious looking tart to prove his point ( i was very hungry afterwards). Well, this handled dish was advertised as a 'strawberry dish'. Quite how one can be sure of that i do not know, but i would imagine that if the description is correct, one would pick up strawberries from the sides and then deposit the stalks in the small circular recesses.

a right royal flush

Bishop & Stonier (BISTO) were not averse to a bit of novelty in their designs and these sandwich plates demonstrate a rather stylish sense of humour. Perhaps they envisaged a game of whist followed by tea and cucumber sarnies. marked for 1929

About Me

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Sometimes, life doesn't turn out the way you expected. And sometimes, it is exactly as it was 'meant' to be. But whilst i'm not a believer in fate or fatalism, I do believe that life is a both a learning experience and an obstacle course to be climbed and clambered over in the most creative way possible! In doing so, you'll get to where you should be even if it's not where you'd imagined.
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