Saturday, 28 December 2013

Exhibition at the Grieves Gallery in 1926

I wonder if this card was sold at the Grieves Gallery, Old Bond Street, London.  That's the address given on the front of this postcard anyway and on the back is reads, "Poole Pottery has gained many distinctions at international exhibitions including two Diplomes d'honneur at the 1925 Exposition des Arts Decoratifs at Paris." It also says, "Visitors are admitted to the Works to see the Pottery being made" and "This is a real Photograph" in case perhaps that people didn't believe their eyes.

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Merry Christmas

Perhaps festive looking, or at least colourful, I've had this shape no.4 Delphis plate painted by Loretta Leigh for quite a few months and today is the day to share it.  Latter in date, at 1970, than a lot of the Delphis ware on this blog, it's the blue colour that makes it for me.

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Pots in Sheds

I think there's something about big, relatively plain pots, and maybe especially jugs, that can lead them on a road of social decline, ending at some point, to them spending time in the garden shed.
It seems that may have happened to this whopping 2 1/2 pinter, at least judging by the dirt in the bottom.  Its made from stoneware and dates from the early 1920's.  Has a shape number T315, but no decorators mark or pattern name.
It came from Ebay last week and has cleaned up quite nicely, but in doing so has also revealed the hairline flaw that probably led to it's original fall from grace.  So a disappointing buy, but in it's dirty state I'm sure the seller wouldn't have seen any damage and sold it quite honestly, and it's future now rest in my green fingers.

Monday, 9 December 2013


When I found this jam pot at Lincoln last week, I thought I new exactly what I was looking at, but now I'm a bit less sure. I'ts signed by Cynthia Bennett and is also marked with shape number 375 ABA, it has a factory mark used between 1970 and 1999.  I thought I had finally found my first pot from the Dorset range that Poole made in the late 1970's, but this pattern is quite different to the ABA pattern show in the Hayward and Atterbury book.  I'd love to hear from anyone who can tell me more.

Friday, 6 December 2013

BBC, Well Done!

It's nothing to do with this Shape 81 Delphis plate that came to me from eBay a couple of months ago. But on and off through the day I've been watching the BBC tributes to Nelson Mandala.  And as the day's gone on I've begun to recognise the pivotal role the BBC played in freeing him from prison and in ending apatheid in South Africa.  
Although my memory of BBC reporting, at least during the 1980's, is at odds with this, it now seems possible that Nelson Mandela political philosophy was based on stuff that the BBC told him. And the BBC also created Dr Who and saved the world from Daleks.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Atlantis Fantasy

There may be a danger of any blog degenerating into a series of sad self-disclosures, but I'm not going to let that put me off.  Mainly because I think on this occasion my fantasy might be shared,in one form or another, by most collectors.
There's not much of a story-line to this fantasy, it starts with me spotting some rare and valuable object in the bottom of a skip or in a jumble sale or charity shop and ends with me taking it home.  But I think the subject, Poole Atlantis ware, just fits the tale so well, with it's brown lumpiness,  I can imagine lots of collectors of Royal Worcester or Spode, completely passing it by, or throwing it into the skip in the first place.
Of course there's not much chance of my fantasy ever been realised (I never seem to have time to get round charity shops and I've not looked in a skip since giving up my allotment a year ago), but I thought I came close to it on Monday at the Lincoln Show Ground this week.  Surrounded by a mix of other, much more shiny, pots, the little vase above stood out like a rose among thorns for any collector of Poole.  I was right there at the start of my fantasy, with the bubble being bust only when if became apparent that the stall holder had knew all about Poole and was asking a realistic price for her vase.  Anyway, I still got to take it home, and money aside, I did still find it in a field in Lincolnshire.
Shape number A2/2, potted by Beatrice Bolton between 1972 and '74.

Monday, 2 December 2013

Come and Buy Me

Today (at least) I managed to resist the collective pressure of online retailers and TV media "news" reports, and not shop online during "Cyber Monday".  
Instead me and a friend visited the antiques fair at the Lincoln Show Ground: The results of which I'll photograph and post pictures here in the next few days.  Until then, it's high time I shared this jam pot that came from eBay a month or so ago.    
It was made in 1921 or '22 from grey coloured stoneware, covered unevenly with a grey glaze and decorated with repeated "sprigs" of blue flowers, with a pattern code H.  The shape number T288 is the same as the later and much more refined shape of jam pot Poole made throughout the later '20s and '30s. But here the bowl is more barrel like, the lid much more flat in profile, and there's no teardrop shaped finial.
It does feel like it comes from a more simple and less commercial time.  Which in 1921 must have been the very impression the makers intended. 

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Spear again

Here's another really quite gorgeous spear shaped Delphis dish that was on eBay recently.  It has a thought through design, subtle reds, and a nice strong blue with a bit of texture. Painted by Christine Tate. So definitely another one for keeping, and not gone tomorrow.  
Third one this month - I just need to find someway of displaying them all.

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Guy Sydenham Jugs

I won these two amazing sculptural jugs at the Cottees Poole Pottery sale last weekend.  I like them so much that posting just one photo just wont do. The Jugs were one of a group of Guy Sydenham lots that had been entered into the sale by Guy's wife Joan Sydenham, so I guess, they had been part of their own collection from the time that Guy made them.  The glaze and carving is very similar to the Poole Pottery Atlantis ware that Guy developed, but these were made in his studio on Long Island in Poole Harbour.  Both jugs have an impressed GS Island mark with two duck feet just under the handles, which dates them to between 1960-1968 - I think.

These Jugs have also inspired a new page on my website

Friday, 22 November 2013

And the Leaves that are Green Turn to Brown

November is almost over, but it's been a late Autumn this year and this plate is really quite vibrant, I think, for Aegean. Which is why it stood out at the Doncaster Racecourse antiques fair a couple of weeks ago.  Unsigned, shape no.3, 8" diameter.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Could Try Harder

Cottees Auctioneers in Wareham held one of their Poole Pottery sales yesterday. I was bidding online and won just one of the dozen or so lots I tried for.  The four spice jars above were the first of my lots to come up, and although I lost these, I now wish I had tried a bit harder to win them.  It's just hard bidding twice the estimate for pots with so much damage to them.  
I have my own set of jars here and V&A have their lone Pepper and Currents jars, but I had no idea that Peppercorn, Ginger, Mixed Spice and Nutmeg ever existed until I saw these pot  listed in the sale.    So at least, now I know there are more jars out there to complete my collection, and very possibly more than the four shown here.  I just need to keep a look out over the next few decades waiting for them to come my way.

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Full Steam Ahead for Delphis

In recent years my Delphis buying has tailed off to a dead-slow pace, but in the past few weeks eBay has been awash with too much Delphis gorgeousness for me to resist.  This Spear dish was painted by Carol Holden, I think,  in 1968.  '68 was the year that this spear shape was introduced and this dish like other early ones has no foot ring, but instead little stubby feet. So I think it dates from the first year and it is so beautiful that I just couldn't let it all sail by.

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Shirley Campbell

A bit slow in posting, but here's the second Delphis plate.   This one is shape no. 4, it's just over 10 inches in diameter and painted by Shirley Campbell in the late 1960's.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Delphis Spear Shape

This is one of two spectacular Delphis plates that I won on eBay recently.  I think this is probably the nicer of the two, but it's often the way with Delphis on eBay that the pots look better in the flesh.  This was painted by Margaret Anderson in 1967.

Friday, 25 October 2013

Suddenly the World Went Wireless?

Poole Pottery produced commemorative plates for quite a few companies that, for some reason, went bust shortly afterwards.  There's probably more to it than that though

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Missed the Boat

This shape number 361 Delphis sweet dish arrived too late to feature in the redesigned Delphis plates page on my website, but has given me an excuse to post the link

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Chinese Blue Twin Handled Pot

This came from a fellow collector, via eBay a few weeks ago.   It dates from the 1930's and is from a range of Chinese Blue glazed wares designed by John Adams.  The glaze on these pots must have have always been ground down flat after firing.  As it seems, with this pot, most of the glaze flowed to the base, at which point its several millimeters thick.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Crumpled, torn and a bit loose at the seams, but....

I can't do better then to repeat the previous owners description of this- An original poster from the halcyon days of Christies Decorative arts sales in South Kensington. My mum and I used to buy/sell there and we acquired the poster from someone we knew. As far as I remember they were not available for sale. The large poster is 30x 20 inches  and details the sale on the 10th Sept 1990 , when Poole Pottery made great amounts at auction and the sale felt like a real day out for collectors. It would make a great addition to a collection but would need to be mounted behind glass, as sadly it has seen better days. There are fine crease marks all over, some stains, and small rips to some edges, but still a rare piece. 

Saturday, 12 October 2013

Another Jam Pot

I've got another pot in this HX pattern, and other jam pots in this no.887 shape, even ones with this early flattened finial, and lots of other pots painted by Eileen Prangnell too, but does that stop me wanting to collect more?

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Sod Ruskin

Although I'd like to think that the great man himself would have appreciated this plate. It has made me realise that there really isn't enough room in my house for his namesake pottery or any other pot not made by Poole. The plate is 8 inches in diameter (shape no.3) as a TV shaped Poole Studio mark that dates it to between 1962 and 1964.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Ruskin Yellow Lustre Candle Holder

If I didn't spend so much time collecting Poole, I might have more time for pots like this. Or maybe it's just the first of many! The base is marked England, Ruskin and a date 1914.  

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Rich Bear, Poor Bear

Bet you can't guess which one lives in my collection. Well, maybe you can.  The bear on the left has a lovely sniffing habit and is one of six designed by Marjorie Drawbell in 1948.  It sold on eBay this week for £282.  It has a Poole stamp on the sole of it's left foot and probably has a large house in Sandbanks.  My bear on the right, is a later copy and similar bears regularly sell for about £10.  He lives in a box under a spare bed in Sheffield. 

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Long Lost Relative

I won this vase on eBay a few months ago, then squirreled it away safely behind glass, then forgot all about posting it on here.  It seems a waste hiding them away - which is partly why I keep posting photos on the blog - and this one really is worth sharing.  The pattern is LV, painted by Rene Hayes in the early 1930's, and  the vase has a fabulous Deco shape (no. 576), but most of all it makes a fantastic companion for the smaller (shape 510)  and more common LT pattern vase below.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

The Dolphin or the Egg?

I really like this little pin dish and I think its the first of it's kind I've seen.  While the Poole factory (dolphin) mark on the back dates it to between 1959 and 1967, the dolphin on the front closely resembles the factory mark introduced in 1962 for use on Poole Studio and continued with the later Delphis wares.   So I wonder which came first.

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Website Updated

Just coming to the end of two weeks off work, during which I've crammed in a trip to Provincetown and a long overdue update of my website.  I'm not sure which was the more exhausting.
Pages to look out for:
And I'm off for a long soak in the bath.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

It Beats... as it Sweeps... as it Cleans

It may be a very tenuous connection to this blog.....But the little point-and- shoot Olympus VR-310, used for most of the images here and on the website, recently got a load of dust inside (somewhere between the lens and the bit that stands in for film) that began messing up all of my photos. The dust came from my pocket no doubt, as it's also the camera I carry around on holidays, but despite Google searches there seemed to be no way of cleaning it.  Until I had the bright idea of sticking the Dyson over the end of the lens and voila! Totally clean and so far still working.  Obviously, I'm not advising anyone else try this, as I'm sure the vac could suck out all kinds of vital gubbins, and I don't want to be held responsible for you breaking your expensive camera, but it worked for me and I just had to share it.
Anyway the butter dish above, sans dust, is in the CG or "Oakleaf" pattern from about 1930.

Sunday, 1 September 2013

End of the road

I have some counting to do, but think this will be the 49th shape number 49 pin dish posted on my web page (when I get round to it) here It's not the end of the road though, there will always be better looking dishes out there, but adopting a one in/one out rule will help with storage.
Painted by Patricia Wells in 1966.

Friday, 23 August 2013

Happy Rob

Here's a happier purchase from the Lincoln fair a few months ago.  It's not big, it's not old and it's not Poole but it makes me happy.

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Two out of three ain't bad

I don't make too many bad buys, but here's the third pot that came from Elescar last weekend, this time from the antiques center around the corner from the fair.  in the dim light of the shop, it looked like a really usable jug, hand thrown and coloured with an Apple Green glaze developed by John Adams dating from the late 1930's, and about one pint in size.  It wasn't until I unwrapped it back at home that I noticed a horrible crack right across the handle, that had completely escaped me first time round.  So in the end a rather useless plain green Jug.

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

A bit of a Lift

Here's the second item from the Elesecar fair last weekend.  Not the vase this time, but the stand.  I've owned this John Adams Chinese Blue vase for quite a few years now.  And if it was sold with a stand originally, as some of these were, they must have parted company long ago.  So I was pleased to find a stand that fits (I have several others that don't) and really do think it gives the vase a bit of a lift.

Monday, 12 August 2013

Never knowingly undersold

It's not the biggest fair in the world, but the monthly Elsecar Antiques Fair rarely disappoints.  This 5 inch Delphis pin dish, the best of three items I found there yesterday, was priced too keenly to haggle over. 
Looking fresh as a daisy, it was painted by Angela Wyburgh in about 1969.

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Grantham Vase

I picked up this vase in a Grantham antiques center, during a pit-stop (to refuel the drivers) on route to Norfolk, at the beginning of this summer.  Shape number 584, CN pattern painted by Iris Skinner in the early 1930s.

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Royal Copenhagan

I'm starting to collect more and more of this Royal Copenhagen Faience pottery, but know hardly anything about it other than I like it.  This tray is really quite a substantial size, about 12 inches long, it has feet and the lots of marks and squiggles on the underside that I should make an effort to find out about.    Next job for today - search for a informative Royal Copenhagen website.

Just discovered that was designed by someone called Kari Christensen.

Friday, 26 July 2013

Irene Kerton Charger

After many years of collecting, this is only the second shape no 5 (14") Delphis plate I own.  I guess that's because there are not so many about and when they appear they tend to be snapped up quickly for pretty high prices.  Painted by Irene Kerton in 1968 or 69.

Sunday, 21 July 2013


Here's a very sunny looking plate I won on eBay a few weeks ago.  Some of the early Poole patterns have lovely naive patterns.  This one manages to remind me of buttercups, sunrise and circus clowns all at the same time.  Coded QN it was painted by Ethel Barrett in the early 1920's.

Saturday, 6 July 2013

Veteran Car Rally, Poole 1961

Definitely a day for taking the hood down.  I think I can let this plate speak for itself and get back outside to the sun while it lasts.

Monday, 1 July 2013

1966 Delphis

Painted by Margaret Anderson in 1966, this 8 inch Delphis plate has the blue Poole dolphin mark (found on other plates from the same year) that was the result of the black stamp interacting with magnolia glaze used on plates underside. A white glaze was used on the bottom of these pots from 1967 onward, so later plates have a truer black mark.

I've finally made a start on a long overdue update of some of the pages on the main website, adding new photos, the first of which is at Colour Reactive Glazes and hopefully there will be more to follow.

Monday, 24 June 2013

Early Bird

This twin handled vase has real charm.  It's an early one, covered in the grey slip used between 1922 and '24, and it seems to carry the orbital marks from the potters fingers/knuckles very proudly. The pattern (coded PN on the underside) was painted by Gertie warren who also began her career at Poole in 1922. It suits this shape of vase really well and has great luminosity against the dull grey ground.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Royal Copenhagen Year Mugs

Pots with dates on always have a special appeal for me.  These pint-sized mugs are from 1973 and 1977, which leaves many more years to collect and it would be nice to have a few more to share with more than one thirsty visitor.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

More Stripes

I bidded quite hard on eBay a few months ago to win this second stripy vase.  The shape (341) is really lovely and the pattern EK looks great with it's careful measured simplicity.  It was painted by Gertie Warren in the mid 1920's.

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Stripy Purple Vase

I returned empty handed from the Lincoln antiques fair today.  There were a few Poole Pottery items at this giant fair, but only one pot that dated from before the last 1960's and that was cracked.  Which makes me realise again just how hard collecting would be without eBay.  
The 4 inch tall beaker or spill vase above, was sold online earlier this year.  Painted by Ethel Barrett during the early 1920's in LC pattern, one of several Truda Adams adaptations of the "Portuguese Stripe" patterns designed by James Radley Young in Poole's earlier years.

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Size matters

Titter ye not, this shape number 85 vase is 18 inches tall, and I'm sure would have taken special skills in throwing.  It's the biggest Delphis vase Poole made and very collectable for that. It's also the first 85 shape in my collection, because I've always previously been out bid on them. It dates from the early 1970's and I think painted by Carole Holden, though she's listed as working on the Aegean range at this time. 

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Very Norse

I collected this vase at the same time as the dish in the previous post. It has the original Aarhus Biuis retail sticker and a whole range of other Royal Copenhagen marks on the base.  Both pots are now in my bathroom as I recon the high fired pottery will be impervious to the changes in temperature and humidity in there, and if I happened to knock one from its perch, whatever it landed, bath, sink, tiles - would come off far worse.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Royal Copenhagan Faience Dish

I found this dish (and a vase I'll post next) at the last Weatherby Racecourse fair.  I've got a couple of smaller dishes like this.  One in a white and blue pattern and  one in these same yellow and black colours, but decorated with a stylised bird.  They date from about 1960 and if I didn't collect Poole already I might just collect these myself.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Part III - a Bluey Hue

This shape vase (585), only 3 inches tall, is one of my favorites and it shows-off the these geometric patterns (this one SP) really well.  

Monday, 6 May 2013

Boys in Blue Part II

A lot of Poole pots were coloured blue.  This vase was made in the late 1940's.  It's thrown in the white earthenware used by this time, but it's been covered with a dark red slip, over-which the blue glaze has been applied.   It has the look of the high fired red earthenware, Chinese blue vases that John Adams had developed during the 1920's. 

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