A fine bone china dinner service has long been on my wish list of things to design so it gives me the greatest of pleasure to finally see it in production. Inspired by the palm fringed shores of Mustique I chose 'Coconuts & Palms' as my theme and the debut couldn't have been more appropriate, the occasion being Mustique's 50th Anniversary, celebrated with a tented, candlelit dinner for 400 under the palm trees along Dolly Beach on Mustique of course.
Some scribbles before starting the designs on the computer.
And the finished pieces.
We chose the best of the best to make our china for us and went all the way to Stoke-on-Trent in Staffordshire to Royal Worcester, which has been producing fine bone china since 1751 with a royal warrant granted by George 3rd in 1788.
More about Royal Worcester: http://www.potteriesauctions.com/royal-worcester.
I subsequently found out that my great, great, great.. grandfather, Henry Daniel, well known in his time for beautiful hand painted china helped put Spode on the map back in the1800s, and Spode was subsequently bought by Royal Worcester, so it has a nice little historical link for me!
A little bit about Henry Daniel I found searching the web:
From 1805 until 1822 Henry Daniel ran his own business on the Spode II premises and was Spode’s enameller Whiter’s job description of an enameller is of an “art director, a decorating manager, a colour manufacturer and a works chemist”. This illuminates the important role that Daniel held for Spode as he bought blanks from Spode, decorated them in his own rented premises and sold them back to Spode to market.
Henry Daniel’s relationship with Spode II was that of one businessman to another. Daniel rented his workshop from Spode, paid to grind his colours and have use of the gold pan, purchased all the equipment necessary, hired his own staff and built three kilns on the Spode site.
John Democratis contests that Daniel and Spode were “a dream team”. Spode had the business acumen and produced fine wares that were decorated with exceptional skill and expertise by those in Daniel’s employ. Whiter also describes Daniel as “an aristocrat of his craft” Their arguments are backed up by a factory visit by none other than the Prince of Wales (subsequently George IV) in 1806. He conferred the Royal Warrant of Appointment on Spode II. Apart from the fine quality of the wares, the enamelling and gilding by Daniel must have played a huge part in such approbation. Daniel’s factory was no mean affair. It is recorded that at the Coronation of George IV (July 19, 1821) there were 192 persons employed by Daniel of whom 119 were female.
Wilkinson writes that “Daniel left Spode a wonderful legacy, fully equipped, well-designed decorating department with talented artists, hand paintresses, hand painters and gilders”.
It is wonderful knowing that my first venture into painted china is already finding homes across the world.
Here is a lovely picture from a friend who took a set to the South of France.
I have the next collection up my sleeve and am looking forward to finding some time to develop the designs!
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A field of flax in flower - little water is needed as this is a very resilient crop. As the health food sector now uses flax seeds and oils, there is barely any waste from each plant.