Monday, August 27, 2007
Vintage ceramics and pottery
Some of you, I'll bet, share my passion for vintage teawares. Sure, you can go buy a brand spanking new tea set any old time. But finding a surprise vintage piece, something with character, is just so much more satisfying. And I thought I'd share that the bowl I photographed that Sugar-free Strawberry Tea Bread in -- well, if you look at the bottom you'll see it's not really a "bowl" after all.
I was at an antique mall and found this unusual (to me, at least) piece on a table marked "Things That Have Been Here Too Long." Now that just struck me as quite humorous. Some antique malls, after all, seem more like museums, keeping their overpriced wares on display forever, apparently unworried about making a sale. Thus this lovely reticulated strainer thing, 7-1/2 inches in diameter and in absolutely pristine condition, was marked down from $16 to just $3. Aren't those pink rose garlands just luscious? And considering its apparent age, how on earth did all that fretwork remain intact over the years? How did it come to be so little valued that it was discounted to less than the price of a latte?
The other thing I love about finding odd pieces for my tea table is that a bit of sleuthing is always involved. What is it? Who made it? What was its purpose? The bottom of this piece is marked Germany and has a maker's mark I haven't yet identified. But there are some good ceramics and pottery sites online, so I'm still investigating. And happily, I discovered that slices of tea bread serve up in this piece just fine, even without the small paper doily I imagined I'd need.