40s ‘Utility’ jug

Fowler Ware ‘Utility’ jug
made in Australia 1940s

I’ve featured a lot of Fowler Ware pudding bowls and jugs on this blog: the 40s colours and shapes are so fabulous. This jug is stoneware, and from the Fowler Ware ‘Utility’ range – perhaps off-white wasn’t as glamorous as the coloured pieces -and could be used every day.

Whatever, the beauty of the off-white stoneware is that any fruit/food/kitchen implement stored in them looks fantastic. Collecting in a single colour is quite dramatic, and these pieces look fantastic in a white or neutral-toned contemporary kitchen. I was inspired by a friend who has about 15 off-white bowls sitting on the top of her kitchen cupboards- in that space below the ceiling.

And the beauty of the jug- it doubles as a vase! Win-win-win!

I have matching Utility stoneware pudding bowls for sale elsewhere on the blog. Start collecting today!

The Utility jug is back stamped, and in excellent vintage condition-for sale: $AU35

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Gempo canister [sold]

Gempo kitchen canister
made in Japan 1970s

Gempo pottery – like much of the 70s- is having a resurgence at the moment. Gempo pottery was made in Japan between1962 – and 1974 for the export market.

This pig canister has the large-faced form that marks all Gempo pottery. It is also particular to the 70s era with the stylised features, and the stoneware pottery glazed in rustic creams and browns. And the fact that the pig is wearing clothes!

I’m not sure how many animals Gempo stylised on canisters, mugs, egg cups and moneyboxes but currently in my collection I have a spotted hippo, giraffe, elephant and lion.

The Gempo pig canister is for sale: $AU25

Pearsons of Chesterfield

Pearsons stoneware jars
made in England, 1970s

These condiment jars- three with pouring lips- are all ‘bung’ jars; the top was sealed originally with a removable bung made of cork. The larger three with pouring lips were made for vinegar, oil and vinegrettes and are 6 inches, the smaller ones are made for spices and are 4 ¾ inches.

The printed makers name on the base of the jars is ‘Pearsons of Chesterfield’ – the pottery works has been making stoneware jars since 1810 and only stopped production in 1994. The makers mark indicates these jars were made in the 70s.

James Pearson took over the early pottery works in the 1930s and renamed it Pearsons of Chesterfield; and when the pottery closed in 1994 it was the last of the potteries to do so.

The jars have a minimalist vibe unusual for the 70s and look fantastic massed together: they are now quite collectible and being so sturdy can be pressed into work in the contemporary kitchen.

The set of seven jars are for sale: $AUD85
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Art Deco candle holder

Art Deco candle holderArt Deco candle holder
made in Australia c.1920s

Here we have a delightful candle holder made in the 1920s. It came from an Estate sale where I met and got chatting to the grand-daughter of the original owner. She knew the candle holder was from the 20s because her grandmother had talked with much affection about its purchase- and long use since then.

The candle holder is unmarked- not uncommon for pottery pieces produced just after the war- but the green glaze and the stylistic influences are classic Art Deco. As is the integral handle- made from the upsweep of the base- all very modern in the 20s and anticipating the modernism of the 50s.

I have teamed the candle holder with a pair of 20s cast iron kookaburras from my partner’s collection [you will recall she is exceptionally fond of kookaburras.] Although they are of the same era, the kookaburras look crude next to the sleek modernism of the candle holder.

The candle holder has some crazing to the glaze at the top [click on the image for a zoomed view]- but that is to be expected from something nearly 100 years old. Other than that it’s in good nick and is for sale : $AUD75

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70s Golden Glory

Johnson ‘Golden Glory’ teacups
made in Australia 1976

The back stamp of these 70s tea cups is Johnson OF Australia – [reminds me of Lawrence OF Arabia!] Johnson Bros [Australia] produced transfer printed stoneware crockery marketed as “tough, utilitarian ware” – which is why these teacups are looking so fresh and unblemished today. Also- never been out of the box.

Johnson Bros [Australia] was a division of Johnson Brothers England- at the time one of the largest domestic pottery producers in the world. This design is ‘Golden Glory’- which, double entendre aside, is a selection of lovely golden Australian flowers. This pattern was collected and added to the Powerhouse collection by a Melbourne artist -John Hind.

I have recently started to embrace the 70s – and Australiana from the 70s; and now I have an Instagram account, I have been seeing much 70s Australiana – and Johnsons ceramics are much celebrated. There is one fantastic site where Johnson pieces are cut and sanded to make upcycled jewellery: rings and necklaces. It’s a lovely celebration of 70s iconography and the ‘tough, utilitarian ware’ that the Johnson Bros never imagined.

This boxed set of four teacups and saucers is for sale: $AU45 Buy now for Christmas!

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Guy Boyd goblets

Guy Boyd goblet set
made in Sydney, Australia 1950s

This is a really, really rare set of Guy Boyd goblets. The form of the vessel- the goblet- was only produced in very limited quantities. To find an original set [rather than re-create a set, one piece at a time] is also rare.

The Boyds are a famous Australian family of artists. Martin Boyd pottery started in Cremorne, Sydney in 1946- but Martin doesn’t exist, instead it was Guy [Martin] Boyd who was the chief ceramicist. The pottery was in operation from 1946-1964, with 1957-58 being the peak production period.

All Guy Boyd pottery is made [and signed] by hand so there is a slight variation between any pieces in a set. The pottery is instantly recognisable from the edge band of unglazed pottery that always separates the two toned pieces. The colours are quintessentially 50s.

This fabulous goblet set would be great for Christmas drinks! It is for sale: $AU75
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60s sunflowers

Ridgway 'Soleil' platters

Ridgway Ironstone ‘Soleil’ platters
made in Stroke-on-Trent, England 1960s

Ironstone is a vitreous pottery first made in England in the late Eighteenth Century as a cheaper mass-produced alternative to porcelain. Ridgeway was in production in Stoke-on-Trent from 1790 to 1964; and these platters were one of the last productions of the pottery.

‘Soleil’ – as in Cirque du Soleil- as soleil means “sun” – is a sunflower motif. I love the broad, elongated shape of these platters emphasised with a border- with a pure circular inset with its abstract sunflowers. These platters would look great hung on a wall. Forget whacking food on them- this is 60s art at its best!

For sale: $AU45

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Sellex bakelite canisters_kanga & roo salt and pepper shakers

Bakelite canisters & kanga & roo salt and pepper setSellex nested bakelite canisters, made in Australia c. 1940s
Kanga and Roo salt & pepper shakers, made in Japan c.1960s

These Sellex bakelite canisters ‘Rice’ and ‘Coffee’ have been separated from their red-lidded set [flour, tea and sugar…] but Kanga and Roo are in their entirety; Roo being the pepper, and Kanga – the salt. Roo pops out the pouch, should be in need of pepper.

I’m sure someone out there has the rest of the Sellex set – or at least wants to add to canisters already collected. The somewhat flowery transfer labels are a little worn, but it’s clear that more Rice was used than Coffee!

The ceramic kanga and roo S & P shaker set is adorable and in perfect condition.

For sale: $AUD85

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Shalom! and Merry Christmas!

Shalom ceramic wall tile and a Christmas storyA Christmas Story, by Richard Burton, 1966
Shalom ceramic tile, c.1960s

Shalom and Merry Christmas! These two pieces have a lovely synchronicity, in shape, colour and form. The funky symbol of Shalom- Hebrew for peace- has a handwritten message on its timber back – ‘Jerusalem’ which I take to be its place of manufacture. The deep blue and orange of the ceramic tile are so very 60s. The tile is framed and has a hook for hanging on its back- this Shalom is meant for display.

Meanwhile Richard Burton- THE Richard Burton -has written a story about his [impoverished] Welsh childhood and subsequent Christmases. He also provided the illustrations. Apparently an acTOR and an author/illustrator. It’s a bit of a turgid read, but this book was continually republished until the late 80s. Must have been doing something right. I bought it mainly for the lovely graphics on the hardback cover.

Wishing all my readers Shalom, and Merry Christmas! And I am sure Richard Burton would want to add his wishes also.

This set is for sale: $AUD45

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Collectable Hornsea

Hornsea Saffron condiment set
made in England, 1970s

Here we have a lovely condiment set: mustard pot and salt & pepper shakers- all with teak lids- in a teak tray.

Hornsea is famous for its 70s patterns; always two apposite colours in a geometric pattern. I’ve showcased them all: Saffron, Heirloom and Bronte.

I grew up with this 70s oppositional style: and have only now come to embrace it again. Especially now it’s so collectable! I have styled the egg cup with wattle: it kinda recalls the yolk and i like how the mustard pot can become a egg cup can / become a vase. I have the teak cover, so it can be used as a mustard pot too!

The breakfast set is in great vintage condition, and is for sale: $AU35

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