July 2, 2013

Blue Denmark

One of the pieces I won at the recent auction was a Blue Denmark serving dish.

It’s quite similar to my pattern, which is Royal Copenhagen Blue Fluted Half Lace.blue fluted

The pattern has Japanese or Chinese origins, and it was brought to Denmark in the late 1700’s, where it was first produced by what would become the Royal Copenhagen factories. It was the young factory’s first success, admired even by King Christian VII.

From Royal Copenhagen’s website:

Royal Copenhagen’s very first porcelain dinner service, the Blue Fluted pattern is as graceful as when it was first adopted in 1775 as the very first porcelain dinner service. It takes 1,197 brush strokes – no more, no less – to paint a Blue Fluted Half Lace dinner plate. Meticulous work and gorgeous art always went hand in hand.

The pattern is said to be mussels and flowers, and is complex, but not over-elaborate.

In England, the pattern was adapted by Furnivals Potteries, which was the first English company to produce these Danish wares. There are subtle differences between Furnivals’ pieces and the ones by Royal Copenhagen. In fact, like the Blue Willow pattern, each company which manufactures it, does it slightly differently. Company records suggest that the Blue Denmark pattern was produced from the 1850s with virtually no modification to the pattern or shape until the closure of the business in 1968. However, the name varies slightly. It’s variously known as Blue Denmark, Denmark, the Danish pattern or the Mussels pattern.

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In fact, there are two Wedgwood brands that produce this pattern – Franciscan and Mason Ironstone. Royal Copenhagen produced a riff on this classical pattern, shown bottom right, called Blue Fluted Mega, which just shows the smallest segment of the pattern.

It’s great to find such a classic pattern that’s endured for more than two centuries, yet still looks contemporary.

11 comments:

  1. They're beautiful! Though I looked and looked and can't see any mussels... is that a code word for something or do they mean mussels, like from the sea?

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    1. I think the little loopy things are the mussels. One other name of the pattern is mussels and flowers, an odd combination!

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  2. if i may, the Blue Fluted Mega has no mussels. the Portion of the pattern that does not look like a flowery interpretation is the pattern/motif INSPIRED by mussels-- a food considered synonymous with Belgium. Hope this helps.

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    1. The Blue Fluted Mega is just a small portion of the whole. Wedgwood did this with some of their iconic patterns, too.

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  3. The internet is wonderful because--- blue mussels are celebrated with a festival during the winter. One can learn soo much with a search via the internet. hash-tag mussels Copenhagen blue

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    1. I did the first part, you all get to do the rest! (And I posted this at about 1 a.m., so wasn't up for much more research!)

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  4. Adore blue & white anything + you scored at auction! xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

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    1. Some auctions go really well, and others, not so much! Next one's in two weeks.

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  5. Blue and white will always be my favorite porcelain pieces.
    Happy 4th!
    Mary

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  6. My uncle was Danish and my aunt had one piece of Blue Fluted, Half Lace. I always want a set but didn't think I'd ever be so lucky. A friend introduced me to on-line auctions and I now have service for 10 in mostly Half Lace, some Full Lace and lots of serving pieces. Think it took 3 years for careful bidding!

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