29 October 2015

Spode and a Coffee Pot

Coffee pot, Meadowsweet pattern 1958
This Spode coffee pot is in two colours. The colours are not painted but are coloured clays and this technique is sometimes known as two-tone. In this case Flemish Green with yellow. These are soft delicate colours and, combined with the plain, perfectly proportioned shape, give a classic mid-twentieth century style. This combination of colours was given a pattern name of Meadowsweet and was introduced in 1958. The shape of the coffee pot is Tean shape.

Flemish Green and other coloured clays were introduced after World War II. You can find out more about the background to why plain colours were popular at this period on my Spode ABC - just go to the F page and scroll down to Flemish Green or click HERE>
Backstamps: printed company mark & pattern name; impressed 24s
Although I love it and bought this coffee pot recently, this particular colour combination seems not to have been a commercial success and was probably not made for long. Flemish Green, though, continued in production until 1973.

The pattern has its own backstamp which combined the pattern name with the company name. On this coffee pot there is also an impressed mark: 24s. This is the size of the coffee pot. Usually the number is seen without the superscript s. Pottery sizing is complicated but in general the larger the number, the smaller the piece.

Leaflet Flemish Green 1958
Coffee pots were usually supplied as part of a coffee set. This may sound obvious but teapots were not supplied with teasets as a rule but were purchased separately. A tradition that grew out of using silver teapots when serving tea in the early 19th century ie a customer may not always require a ceramic teapot.

The illustration of a 1958 leaflet shows the range in Flemish Green; Meadowsweet would have had similar items available. You can see my coffee pot and to its right a Utility teapot.

The marketing blurb on the leaflet makes it hard to avoid purchase:

'Flemish Green Table ware is specially made for everyday use. The shapes are easy to clean and pleasant to use. The body is strong and chip resistant, while the glaze is hard and will not craze after years of regular use. The colour is pleasing to the eye and the range of items is wide.'

Plate detail, Flemish Green border with yellow centre, ie 2 layers of clay