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!
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 Buy Now
RidgwayIronstone ‘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!
Sellex 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.
A 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.
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
Here is a selection of some of the glass kitchen canisters that I have collected for use in my kitchen: these are the ‘spares’. The thick, square glass canisters were originally filled with nuts or sugared almonds, and sold at Christmas time in the 50s and 60s. The plastic lids come in all manner of colours, and are still good and air-tight. So beautiful and functional!
I like that you can see how much sugar/flour/tea is left in the glass canisters, and now I associate red with ‘lentils’, blue with ‘couscous’, and green with ‘green tea’. This colour coding is a great idea!
I also have a selection of glass canisters with black bakelite lids- these only seemed to come in black- and they date earlier, probably the 40s.
The canisters are for sale: $AU20 [coloured plastic lids] and $AU30 [black bakelite lids.]
These fabulous graduated jugs are called ‘Beulah Ware’- named for Bakewell’s wife, Beulah. They are functional jugs, with just a hint of art deco styling in the handle shape and the graduated patterning.
Bakewell started production in 1884 and like so many potteries, moved from making bricks and pipes to domestic wares in the early part of the twentieth century. By the 1920s, they were manufacturing vases [‘exclusive ware’] and domestic ware –kitchenalia – with ceramic canisters, bowls and jugs.
The earthernware jugs came in a set of four: unfortunately we only have three here. A full set of graduated jugs is next to impossible for find now – and originally, they came in this pastel green, a pastel yellow and a baby blue. You’ll note the subtle variation between the green colourings- this was due to the hand-glazing technique, and was a deliberate policy to allow for replacement pieces, should you break one of a set.
This is a limited edition ‘Christmas’ Snoopy mug, which has Snoopy as Santa delivering presents in his Sopwith Camel plane. I note that he is delivering koala bears and skateboards- the gift of choice in 1965!
The mug was made in Japan under license to United Features Syndicate, which owns the Peanuts franchise. Due to the presence of the koala bear, I have styled the mug with some nice Eucalyptus leaves.
I have a little Peanuts collection going- see post below with:
Snoopy letter/envelope writing set, made by Hallmark; Melbourne, Victoria 1958
Linus ‘Try it…you’ll like it’ figurine, made by Aviva; Hong Kong 1970
Snoopy and Woodstock jug, made by Peanuts Characters Corp; USA 1965
Linus ‘To know me is to love me’ bowl, made by United Feature Syndicate Inc; Japan 1962
The mug is for sale: $AU15 – let me know if any of the other Peanuts collection appeals to you.