Sunday, 12 November 2017

Drinking partner

Two things, I cant get enough of, drink and furry beasts, combined here in a single object. The bear came from eBay last month.  The glasses and decanter I found in the Sheffield Antiques Centre today.

Saturday, 28 October 2017

Circus Tent

WL is often refereed to as the circus tent pattern.  An inverted version of the pattern forms the top inch or so of the larger XF pattern seen in the previous post.  The shape number for this jug is unclear but may be 678.

Sunday, 22 October 2017


XF must be the king for geometric patterns.  I've wanted a vase in this pattern for years, but until now have always been outbid.  So it must be quite a popular pattern, which make sense given that you get so much more decoration for your money.  This example was painted by Vera Bridle who worked at Poole between 1923 and '33, and I think it suits the shape (no 418) really well. 

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Lilly Pedley

Same shape and same painter as the last post and this vase came to me from the same collector too.  This time its painted in OS pattern and glazed in the traditional Poole style

Saturday, 14 October 2017

One extreme to another

A fraction of the size of the vase in the last post, at just 8 cm tall, this shape number 583 vase was painted, in the RU pattern, by Lilly Pedley, some time between 1925 and 1932.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Nitromors magic

This huge (34cm tall) glazed "Etruscan" vase arrived from Ebay last month. It was listed with what looked like white scuff marks to the surface, and this made sense as these pots are quite susceptible to surface damage.   However when it arrived this scuffing turned out to be white paint - it looked like someone had brushed against it when painting nearby.
Old pots often collect small specks of paint, presumably from being left in situ while ceilings are being rollered.  Paint doesn't stick very well to a glazed surface and usually specks of paint will wash off easily with warm water.  The paint on this pot was a different matter however.  The rough unglazed surface made a perfect canvas and the paint was stuck.   Luckily I remembered reading in a pot conservation guide that nitromors is used by conservators to remove old glue from repairs.  It seemed quite drastic at the time, but an old can of nitromors and several cotton wool buds later and the vase looks to be in factory-fresh condition.  It turns out that nitromors will burn skin, completely melt paint, but magically leaves pottery untouched.
The pattern is AB and it was painted by Ruth Pavely in the early 1930's.  The V&A have a similar vase.

Saturday, 30 September 2017


This Studland pattern coffee pot came together with a few cups and saucers and a sugar bowl.  I don't have room to display those other pieces, but the coffee pot looks good standing among other decorative, less functional ware. Studland tableware was designed by Harold Stabler in 1930 and the shapes were clearly influenced by his earlier work as a silversmith. The apple green glaze was created by John Adams. 

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Garden City

This bowl was lot 227 in the same Hansons' 27th June 2016 sale in which the pot in the previous post was listed.  I did really well that day!
It was cataloged as having a floral skyscraper design. but I've always seen this LP pattern as a much more straight forward roses and trellis design with Art Deco chinoiserie styling, that sits comfortably alongside other rose and trellis patterns, PU and PI.  So to prove me right, I googled "early skyscrapers", thinking that they would all be pointy and Chrysler-like, but in fact there are quite a few boxy ones from the 1930's. So maybe floral skyscraper isn't so far-fetched.

Saturday, 23 September 2017


I like this vase for the slightly cogwheel styling of the flowers.  The overlapping and concentric circles on this and other Poole patterns remind me also of the Sonia and Robert Delaunay paintings of the teens and twenties of the 20th century. So this vase was definitively on-trend when it was made in the late 1920's or early 1930's. It's 18 cm tall, shape number 575 (I think), pattern DX, painted by Ruth Pavely and it was lot 151 in the 27th June 2016 Hansons' Decorative Arts sale.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Wobbly jug

I love this little jug.  The thick tin glaze, on a pot so small, gives it a really wobbly look.  It's made from buff coloured stoneware, measures a little over 7 cm tall, and is marked with the first CSA factory mark, shape number T324, a pattern mark that I think is /A and a painters mark that I cant decipher.

Monday, 28 August 2017

This pot was sold at the Warren and Wignall auction on 8th February 2017.  It caught my eye because I hadn't seen this glaze before, and now it's mine, it still remains something of a mystery, at least to me.
It's marked as shape number 291, has the CSA Ltd stamp (so dates from 1925 to '34) and has a painted number 1, that must refer to the glaze.  It has a red body, that I think is more highly fired than the usual earthernware body and has a thick glaze.  Both the body and glaze have been ground down on the base as you find on the chinese blue vases.
If anyone has any more insights I would be glad to hear from you.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Mask vase

This vase was sold to me by a collector who had found it himself at the Cottees auction of September 2010.  It was designed it was designed by James Radley Young and dates from between 1915 and 1921.

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Double D

Here's another shape 293, painted in DD pattern by Phyllis Way.  DD is one of my favorite geometric border patterns.  To my knowledge it's also the only one with red glaze (referred to as crimson in the pattern books).

Tuesday, 1 August 2017


This covered bowl, is shape number 293 (10 cm in diameter), and was painted in NC pattern by Vera Bridle who worked at Poole for 10 years between 1923 and '33.   I'm not sure what purpose this pot was meant to serve, there is no spoon hole in the seated lid, but later versions do have a ventilation hole and the more typical teardrop finial. A pot like this is shown in the Studio Yearbook, 1922.

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Slight upgrade

I bought this fantastic looking vase a year, or so, ago, in a private sale, from a fellow Poole collector who I first bumped in to on eBay.  He was selling up much of his collection and was kind enough to do so in installments so I could buy quite a bit of it and spread the cost over a few months.
Any pattern with spots on is very collectable in my view and this CE pattern has the added joy of yellow vertical wriggles.  The shape is D353.  I have an almost identical vase that I posted here in the blog a couple of years back, but still thought this new one was worth collecting as it was made sightly earlier between 1921 and '22 and is made from grey semi-stoneware. I used to find the grey coloured slip on these earlier pots a bit dull, but these days think the grey gives these geometric patterns extra luminosity.
On the base there's a C enclosing a K mark, that isn't listed in the Hayward and Atterbury book.  I wonder if this may stand for the Kendall of unknown first name and gender who is recorded to have worked at Poole in 1922.  
There's a list of painters whos marks are not known in the collectors club magazine at

Friday, 21 July 2017

0dd one out

These four shape 713 egg cups are the final lot I won at the Harvey Collection sale. The odd one out is LD pattern painted by Gwen Dry, the other 3 are AQ pattern and all painted by Hilda Trim.

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

One night stand

These two shape 583 vases were sold together as lot 159 in the Cottees Harvey Collection sale, but they may never sit side by side again, as one almost certainly destined for resale on eBay (perhaps after at rest in a box under the spare bed). The vase at the front is CL pattern painted by Ethel Barrett in the first half of the 1920's. For me it has a charming combination of age and naivety and it will be proudly displayed next to my CL patterns bowl and candlestick.  The other vase is TI pattern byAudrey Miles who work at Poole between 1938-42.  

Friday, 14 July 2017

Great shape

Another pot from the Cottee's sale of the Harvey collection last month.  This shape number 608, KM pattern, footed bowl, painted by Ruth Pavely between 1922 and 1924, was lot 155. And a matching plate I appear to like so much that it got posted twice here and here.

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Second hand

At the end of last month Cottees Auctions held a sale of Poole Pottery from the Harvey Collection and this pot (lot 148)  is one of several that I won.  Its shape number 422 (18 cm tall), QA pattern, and was made in the 1920's.  Its a later recreation of the Carter and Co unglazed stoneware pots and, with several firing flaws to its credit, really has the same spirit.
Its also had a notable life. Coming to me from the Harvey Collection (that I would love to know more about), it came to that collection from the 31st March 2004 Poole Pottery Archive Sale held at Christie's (part of lot number 36). So it didn't leave the factory gates until 2004 and in some ways (if you don't count Carter Stable and Adams, Pilkington's Tiles, who later took over the factory, and their successors and subsequent administrators who sold up at Christie's) I'm only the second owner in this pots 100 history.

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Grapes pattern

This is a recent addition to my collection that I found at the Newark antiques fair last month.  I think its quite a nice, mid sized, shape in a pattern I also quite like. Shape 418 (16 cm tall), TR pattern painted by Ruth Pavely some time between 1925 and 1934.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Memento Mori

Remembering that you have to die isn't as popular as it once was. But it must be a thought that crops up every now and then for most collectors, who (for each pot) are just the latest custodians in a growing line or predecessors.  This little BV pattern, Portuguese stripe, stoneware jug, I won at the Cottees' Poole Pottery auction in April last year (lot 318).  Its just 7 cm in height and shape number T323 (theT tells us that its a piece of tableware). It was made in 1921.  I don't know how it found it's way into the Cottees sale, but the sticker on the base tells us that it previously belonged to Albert E. Wade, and was sold (as part of lot. 189), along with the rest of his collection of pottery, at Sotheby's in 2002.  I'm hoping it will be quite a few years before it goes to market again.

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Massive Poole

I thought this photo needed something to give a sense of scale, so I've reused the little grape pattern vase from the last post.  The main attraction though is a really quite massive VT pattern vase, shape number 515, painted by Gertie Warren in the mid 1920's.  I won it on eBay a year or so ago and, at 38 cm tall, its a couple of inches bigger than any of my other pots.

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Awake again!

It's been nearly 2 years since the last photo appeared on this blog, but my collecting never really stopped, and I now have quiet a few new pots that have never had an outing.  So to test the water, here's a little 9 cm tall vase, shape number 967, painted in TR (grapes) pattern by Phyllis Ryall some time between 1928 and '34.

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