June 6, 2013

My Score of the Week

I was at a small dinner for John Robshaw a few years ago, and the host of the dinner asked the disparate group of guests to each answer the same question – what would you do with your life if you didn’t need to worry about anything. My answer was that I’d like to have a small shop. It was a top-of-the-head answer, but I realized that’s one thing I’d like to do. And further, I realized that I am a hunter – I love the process of hunting up great finds, and then once I have them, most of the thrill is gone.

Of course, all of this is a long way of telling you what I found last week at a sale I attended.

As soon as I spotted these pitchers with their old pewter lids, I snatched them right up and started making a pile. I got a few other treasures, but these were the first thing that caught my eye.

Each of the pitchers is very detailed, and the pewter lids fit perfectly. They date from the mid-1800’s and are in perfect condition.

Their shapes are so classical and at the same time, sculptural.

Even the lids are great looking. When I went to load everything in the car, one of the lids fell open and I found a piece of paper stuck inside. These are apparently antique English syrup pitchers, although I am slightly suspicious of that description, as I think that they’re rather large to have served syrup (10” to 15” tall). These aren’t marked, but since they’re from a reputable company, I am taking their word that they’re English antiques. I have a suspicion that they’re Parian Ware, a bisque porcelain because of their matte sort of glaze. I found a very similar piece on 1st Dibs. imageI got a great bargain on this, something like 98.3% off the price listed in the catalogue!

30 comments:

  1. Here here for the score of the week. Pitcher you say, perhaps for Water! What were Victorians serving at the dinner table? Would Mary Poppins work in a household dispensing wine? Also, a G-search of the key word yielded a fascinating article on this ceramic line.

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  2. Ha! I love hunting as well and the actual kill isn't as fun as the adrenaline that seeking creates. Those pieces are lovely and I think the matte finish makes it even lovelier. You know, I think they well could be syrup jars. The Victorians did have the most incredible sweet tooth and looking at Mrs Beeton's recipes - she would make the most ridiculously rich recipes. Or it could have been the medicinal syrup jars as they also used lots of syrups the way we use calpol etc.

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    1. What's that new drink? Calpol and red wine?

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    1. They are gorgeous. The matte finish is great.

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  4. Gorgeous! My great-grandmother had a similar pitcher. I never seem to get deals quite like that.

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  5. Meg you are so good at knowing what to look for, I would love these as well. They are gorgeous, a great find. You may have to have a Tastemaker's Tag Sale soon!

    2013 Designers Series
    xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karena

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    1. I think that I've given OKL too much grief here for them to let me have a TTS!

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  6. they're charming! great collection. When I find treasures at estate sales I always justify it by saying "i'll sell one of these items to pay for the rest" but then I rarely do -haha. Did the same thing this past weekend with my treasures from a few great estate sales.

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    1. Stefan... that's what I always think, too!

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  7. I've always thought you would make a perfect shop owner, you have such a great eye for special things!

    Kat

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    1. Thanks, Kat... maybe some day. I almost did it when I first came back to the States, but then things (life) interfered!

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  8. You would be a grand shop owner + what interesting things you would have to sell + These are wonderful. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

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  9. These guys are fantastic--either Parian ware or salt ware. And displayed grouped together...divine. Some collectors focus only on this type of ceramic--love them.
    Have a super week-end.
    Mary

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    1. I really didn't know about Parian ware until this purchase. But it's fascinating.

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  10. Gorgeous! I used to own two stores and the buying trips were by far my most favorite part of the job. There's just something about the thrill of the hunt!

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  11. Oh my goodness, What a find!!! I've never seen Parian Ware items but sure like these pitchers and they must have been packed away to be in such good condition. Congratulations!

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    1. I never knew that Parian ware had a name, until I found these pitchers. Now I know!

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  12. I have no idea what the pitchers were used for but they are gorgeous. Now I'm off to research Parian Ware since I've not heard of it. If you ever open a shop I'll volunteer to do your accounting in exchange for being able to spend as much time as I want looking at all the finds!

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  13. Just saw your post on the sidebar at Polohouse and popped right over. It was those pitchers! Love the design and the pewter details. If you decide to part with them, please send me an email. You did say the thrill for you was the hunt. ;-) Seriously, I'm interested if you decide to part with them. ~ Sarah

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    1. Keep an eye on my Etsy shop on the sidebar!

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  14. Fabulous finds! Beautiful treasures!

    The back one on the left looks like a Mettlach Beer Stein. I have inherited the blue-grey cameo one found on this site: http://www.antiques-bible.com/mettlach-beer-steins/

    Villeroy Mettlach made many styles of steins. Do a search for images.

    Are there markings on the bottom?

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    1. No marks on the bottom or on the pewter lids. I checked every inch!

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  15. I know this is a super old post, but I just found your blog, courtesy of Reggie, and am going through back posts. Do you still have any of these left? I was immediately drawn to the light blue one, it would match my Shreve's gurgling cod perfectly!

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    1. Natalie... Welcome! So sorry that I don't have any more. Sold them right away. Keep an eye on my Etsy shop because I go to auctions all of the time.

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