Styling with retro vases

Pates pottery vaseFollowing from the last post- here is an example of Pates Pottery that I collect- those with an ‘Australiana’ colour glaze of brown and green – apparently reminiscent of the Australian bush. This nationalistic colour combination was very popular in the 50s, and since I am a landscape architect, and quite fond of the Australian bush, I have tended to collect Pates pieces in this colour range.

This quite deco-shaped vase has a removable ‘frog’ in the centre, in the same glaze. The frog is shaped with holes to support flower stems at the angle required…in this image I have attempted some free-form Ikebana, with Banksia flowers. That’s the great thing about retro vases- they lend a certain gravitas to one’s attempt at flower arranging!

Pates pottery vases

Pates pottery vases [50s]Pates Pottery vases
made in Sydney Australia, c.1950s

These beautiful vases were made by Pates Pottery, which operated out of Belmore, Sydney from 1946 -1990. As you may have noticed, given the tenor of the posts of this blog, being a Sydneyite I have an affinity for the potteries that were producing domestic ware in the 40s, 50s and 60s.

Pates’ glaze colours were influenced by the 1950s furnishing and domestic colour trends; the stippled pink and green is typical of this period. Also typical, but harking back to the Art Deco – are the forms and shapes of the pieces. Pates pottery had a foot in both camps- shapes that were very familiar but in colours that were funky and 50s.

The three vases here are: Deco wall vase, posey ‘scroll’ vase and a stylized ‘log’ peony vase. All in top order and ready to receive flowers. I’m particularly fond of the wall vase- we don’t see enough of them in homes today- and it’s a great idea to hang flowers rather than take up table space.

The three vases are for sale: $AUD95

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40s Australiana

Pates basket potsPates baskets,
made in Sydney, Australia 1940s

Pates Pottery operated out of Belmore, Sydney from 1946 -1990; so a similar period to Diana pottery. Pates was slower to develop an Australian response to the design and colouring of its pieces and was still producing baskets and swans well into the 50s. These baskets, with their twisted handles, seemed to have been produced all over the world.

Pates used a ‘drip-glaze’ method on most of their pieces and indeed one way to spot a Pates piece is by its mottled colouring. I have collected many Pates pieces- and some of these pieces have made it onto this blog.

The three baskets look great together as an ensemble: here they are showcasing wattle- another Australian iconic flower. They are for sale: $AUD55

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Lustreware

Pates lustreware platterPates lusterware plate
made in Sydney, Australia c. 1950s

Ah lusterware! Loved by me and…hardly anyone else –and….loathed by many. But it was such a quintessential expression of the 50s – and a world-wide phenomenon – in that it linked ideas of ‘modernity’ with ‘metal’ or machinery. In short, lustreware was all about the space-race.

Lustreware is a metallic glaze produced by using metal oxides in an overglaze, placed over an initial colour and re-fired in a kiln. Lustreware’s shininess and metallic-ness was very revolutionary in the 50s – so used to pastel pink and baby blues. It was all about the new ‘machine’ era.

This swan/peacock platter, though- is familiar in form. Pates produced this piece through the 40s in rather sedate glazed colours and then updated it using lusterware glazes in the 50s. The Pates catalogue actually describes this as a swan/peacock platter, as if it is an amalgam of the two. Either way, the bird’s head is the platter handle and the lusterware is – awesome!

The lusterware platter is for sale: $AUD75

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Pates posey vases

Pates posey vasesPates posey vases,
made in Sydney, Australia c.1940-1950s

These posey vases were made by Pates Pottery, which operated out of Belmore, Sydney from 1946 -1990. As you may have noticed, given the tenor of the posts of this blog, being a Sydneyite I have an affinity for the potteries that were producing domestic ware in the 40s, 50s and 60s.

Pates’ pottery glazes were influenced by domestic 1950s furnishing and interior colour trends; but the forms borrowed heavily from British and American designs. These posey vases comprise three ‘trough’ vases [foreground] and two ‘log’ vases [background]- the forms were copied from overseas but the colours are all about Australian interior decor of the 50s.

Posey vases are small and design to ‘float’ short-stemmed flowers. All the posey vases are stamped ‘Pates Australia’ on the base and all are in good condition with no cracks or crazing.

Five Pates posey vases for the discerning Pates/posey vase collector; for sale- $AUD100

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Pates posey vase

Pates posey vasePates posey vase
made in Sydney, c 1940s

This posey vase was made by Pates Pottery, which operated out of Belmore, Sydney from 1946 -1990. The deco styling of the vase is deliberate, although it was made much after that period; it seems nostalgia for things past [and styles familiar and remembered] has always influenced pottery makers.

The drip glazes used by Pates were applied by hand, and the vases came in mottled shades of pinks, yellows, and green & brown- indeed it is this mottled glaze that instantly identifies this vase as a Pates vase. The vase is also stamped on the base “Pates Potteries Sydney Australia.”

This lovely green and brown vase is perfect to display wattle – the joey figurine is just along for the ride.

Pates Pottery collectors rejoice: this posey vase is in perfect condition and is for sale: $AUD75

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Pates ‘half moon’ vases

Pates 'half moon' vasesPates Pottery half moon vases
made in Sydney, 1946-1956

These posey vases were made by Pates Pottery, which operated out of Belmore, Sydney from 1946 -1990. As you may have noticed, given the tenor of the posts of this blog, being a Sydneyite I have an affinity for the potteries here that were producing domestic ware in the 40s, 50s and 60s.

These two vases didn’t start out as a pair- but they exemplify the fashion of the day: buy one half now, and save up for another to make a pair later on. The drip glazes were different on each vase so it was easy to make a pair out of vases that may have been made a decade apart. The posey vases came in mottled shades of pink, yellow, brown and green- and could stand alone as a ‘half moon’ or be paired with another to make a ‘full moon’.

The deco styling of the vases is deliberate, although they were made much after that period; it seems nostalgia for things past [and styles familiar and remembered] has always influenced pottery makers.

Pates Pottery collectors rejoice: this set is in perfect condition and is for sale: $AUD55

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Pates wall pocket vases

Pates wall pocket vasesPates wall vases
made in Sydney, 1948-1952

Pates pottery is one of the main areas in which I collect. If you’ve read my blog before, you’ll remember that Pates Pottery operated out of Belmore, Sydney from 1946 -1990 [and I have an affinity for between the wars pottery, especially potteries that were located near me in Sydney.] Pates’ designs and colours were influenced by the 1950s and 60s furnishing and domestic colour trends; and like many other pieces of this period, crimson and green or pink and green colourings abounded.

These wall pockets are made to be hung on the wall, so as to hold water and floral arrangements. The three shown here are: ‘sea scroll’ ‘gum leaf’ and ‘art deco’ [this despite the fact that it was made in the 50s.] The colours and forms are quite beautiful, and the three of them hung together is quite something.

I am now reluctantly parting with some of my Pates collection…I alas lack the wall space in which to display these vases to their full advantage. And they should be seen to their full advantage!

This set is for sale: $AUD90

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Pates pottery collectibles part II

4 Pates 50s vasesPink & Green Pates vases
made in Australia c.1940-1950

More pink & green speckled Pates pottery- here we have some delightful kitschy vase shapes. Fish and swan in the middle, with a floating flower trough to the front and a posy vase behind. One kitschy vase does not a set make…look how good they look when grouped en masse.

I’ve speculated previously that this pink and green pottery colouring was produced to match a 50s interior- it wasn’t until the 60s that the ‘Australian’ tones of green and brown were seen. I like the hand applied colour glazes- it means despite these vases being turned out in the hundreds- no two were ever the same.

These four vases would make a nice collected set with the three vases posted below. This set is for sale: $AUD110

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Pates vases- pink & green speckled

Pates vases- pink & green speckledPates vases
made in Sydney, Australia c.1940s-1950s

I have posted about Pates pottery previously [sorry, couldn’t help the alliteration] – but not, I think, the pink and green speckled Pates pottery.

Pates Pottery operated out of Belmore, Sydney from 1946 -1990, quite close to where I now live. Pates’ designs and colours were influenced by the 1950s furnishing and domestic colour trends; so these three vases are instantly recognisable as coming from the 50s.

The set comprises a ring ‘floating’ flower vase- with deco stylings, an upright vase with exaggerated lip and a floating flower ‘log’ vase. I don’t really understand the ‘log’ vase- but it is so associated with the 50s and was so ubiquitous that I have come to embrace its slightly kitschy realism.

This set is for sale:  $AUD85

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