28 November 2010

Spode and Pattern 1166

A range of wares, bone china, pattern 1166 c1808
One of the most sumptuous designs produced during the Spode period (c1770-1833) has pattern number 1166. It has no name just a number. It is one of about 75,000 patterns recorded in the Spode archive. Many Spode patterns simply have a unique number with no name but this design has a conveniently memorable number.

Pattern 1166 was first recorded in about 1808. The items in the illustration above are the sort of wares made for Spode's well-to-do customers.

The pattern is groundlayed in cobalt blue, handpainted and gilded on Spode's pure white bone china. It is gilded and painted entirely by hand. The combination of cobalt blue and gold is one of the most expensive in ceramic decoration as it is produced with 2 of the most expensive raw materials. This extravagance, coupled with these gorgeous flowers, makes this design one of the most magnificent to come out of the Spode factory.
Gilding detail to foot of 'Beaded New Shape Jar'
The gilded scales are graduated in size to fit the various sized objects - whether for a large punch bowl (the one in the illustration was the Duke of Newcastle's) or a small ink stand - and each object's particular shape.

The top illustration was produced for a postcard for the new Spode Museum in about 1996. Sadly the museum was short-lived and closed in 2008/9.

The pieces in the top illustration from left to right are given below. Jar is an old word for vase. The number in brackets after the description is the page number in the Spode 1820 Shape Book which can be found at the Spode Exhibition Online site (but you need Adobe Flash Player to view).

The spellings here are shown in italics as given in the original document.
  • Sevres Shape Jar (sic); recorded as made in 3 sizes; this with swan shaped handles; (143)
  • Pierced Cov'd Pedistall Antique Jar (sic); recorded as made in 2 sizes; (63)
  • Punch Bowl, cover and ladle made for His Grace the Duke of Newcastle with the handle to the cover modelled as a ducal coronet.
  • Tray Ink Stand with ink pot, wafer box and sand box; (90)
  • Dolphin Tripod (thought to be an incense burner); recorded as made in 3 sizes; (17)
  • Sevres Shape Jar (sic); as above
The illustrated Beaded New Shape Jar (below) was recorded made in 9 sizes; (6). The different sizes could be arranged as groups known as garnitures. More here - hopefully this link of a 2017 exhibition will stay on the V & A website. They also have a film about the history of garnitures on YouTube. There is also a book 'Garnitures: Vase Sets from the National Trust' by Patricia Ferguson. 
'Beaded New Shape Jar', made in 9 sizes
Each vase of different size, or even in a pair of the same size, had a different arrangement of flowers painted on it but following the same theme; and different flowers scattered along the foot.
'Beaded New Shape Jar', detail
It is possible that this pattern on Spode's bone china was made to imitate the Chinese and Japanese metal working technique known as cloisonné.
Duke of Newcastle's Punch bowl, detail
Many, many different items were made in this pattern to grace the homes of the wealthy. More can be seen in the book Spode by Leonard Whiter.

1 comment:

  1. I have always thought that pattern 1166 along with pattern 711 was one of the best patterns made by any of the potteries.

    you can see the largest most up to date census of this pattern on my wiki Porcelainpedia. The pattern index for Spode is very large.

    the url for pattern 1166 is :

    take a look around.