There is a definite chill in the air now and that lovely October feeling is starting to steal over me. I adore this time of year: Hallowe’en, Bonfire Night, leaves falling from the trees, woolly scarves and hats, mulled wine. Although we’re still decorating like mad – which means I can’t create my usual Autumn display with West German Pottery, conkers, twigs and pumpkins – I can still select and show off some of the more seasonally-coloured pottery we’ve collected over the years.
We’re hoping to get the majority of the decorating done this week; finishing just before we go off on holiday for a week. Perhaps when we come back I can create some kind of display for Hallowe’n. It’d be lovely to get some of these pieces of pottery out and use them. I feel like they’ve been boxed away for so long!
Suggestions for West German Pottery decorative uses:
- Go for a long walk and collect twigs of varying lengths and crooked shapes. Place inside tall, thin pots as they are or spray paint gold or black for a more Hallowe’en-like effect.
- WGP dishes can hold conkers, both shells and the nuts; dried orange peel and cloves
- Select pumpkin shaped pots to make a display on a sideboard – Scheurich balloon vases are good for this. Intersperse with real pumpkins and squashes.
- For a Hallowe’en party, choose dark coloured pots and cover them with fake cobwebs.
- Use your rumtopf or D&B Saturn punch bowl to hold mulled wine – you never know when you’ll need a cupful!
Please leave any further suggestions for Autumnal decorative ideas in the comments – how are you going to use your pottery this season?
Our display from a couple of years ago… Our friend, Dan, is trying to light his first ever carved pumpkin. Cobwebbed and be-twigged pottery provide the background to his sex-pumpkin!
Time for a bit of self promotion, I think. I don’t do this very often, as he has his own website, but I do like to show off some of Aidan’s pottery every now and then. Tonight he’s uploading some more lovely pots and as he’s spent this entire Easter weekend doing essential D.I.Y. to our house, the least I can do is help promote his business. Feast your eyes on the West German pottery below and if you fancy bidding on any, make sure you click on his Ebay link here.
If you’ve not visited it already, you need to get yourself over to Potsandpots.com. Aidan has spent many hours putting this together and the results are – not that I’m biased at all – a fantastic resource for the West German Pottery collector.
For each of the major West German Pottery manufacturers, he’s compiled a gallery of all of the pieces we have ever owned or sold and placed them into number order. As we find more and more, the galleries will be updated. This allows any collector to quickly skim through and identify a pot. It’s not as all-encompassing as the Pottery and Glass forum, for example, but it is an excellent reference point for the burgeoning collector. We both use it ourselves when trying to identify our own pottery!
Other features are tips and hints on how to identify the different factories; histories of the major factories; and a blog based around West German pottery price trends, where it’s been spotted and so on.
The blog covers the average price trends of WGP, which can be really useful if you’re deciding whether to keep or sell a piece!
If you need any help or information, visit Potsandpots.com and leave Aidan a comment. Alternatively, email him at: info (at) potsandpots.com.
We’re heading off to Germany again in a couple of weeks’ time, so expect an influx of pottery posts both on here and over there.
As it’s now the (and I hate saying this) run-up to Christmas, we’re having a big push on Aidan’s Ebay, selling lots of West German Pottery. There are all kinds of pots for sale:
As with all of his Ebay listings, Aidan takes a lot of time to ensure that the pictures are truly representative of the colours, designs and proportions of the pots. Listings always include a detailed description of the items – any tiny blemish is described, and he does have eagle eyes! He spots things that I cannot see, even when he’s pointed them out to me. So you can be sure that if you buy something from us, what you see is most definitely what you get.
Some of my particular favourites from this week and next are these:
Just look at the glaze on that! It’s an amazing texture; crusty, thick and bursting with colour. ‘Fat Lava’ could not be a more appropriate way to describe it.
Remember ‘nu rave’? No, me neither, but the neon/rave scene will always have a place in popular culture. Why not pay homage to it with this:
N3221120 Jasba for sale
Those designers really did take their inspiration from anywhere, didn’t they?
If ever there were a ‘man’ vase, this one would be it:
“You Jane, Me Great Big Man Vase…” There’s definitely something very masculine and tribal about it. It looks like it should be dug up out of a pit, storing the brains of some long dead pharaoh or emperor. Maybe that’s just my imaginative interpretation of it!
I’ll be honest; I’m not sure how Aidan persuaded me to part with that punch bowl! I love it. Imagine having your mulled wine out of that this Christmas? Would certainly be a talking point amongst your relatives and a fantastic way to initiate them into the West German pottery fold.
I’ll give a pound to anyone who can get the British Sea Power reference in my caption…
I’m worried that beautiful Scheurich will get overshadowed by its more gaudy cousins. The glaze on this is beautiful: subtle, swirled green covered in a silver, metallic oil. It was difficult to capture truly on pictures, but I think Aidan did a good job of getting it just right.
So, those are my favourites that are up for sale over the next two weeks. If you fancy having a look (and even having a bid), click here.
This is one of my favourite times of the year. Once half term is over, it’s the countdown to Christmas, Halloween and Bonfire Night. There’s something about the smell in the air at this time of year: crisp, leafy, smoky… it reminds me of walking to school as a teenager, wrapped up in my thick navy school-coat and school scarf. Actually, that doesn’t sound too different from what I’m still doing now – only the colour of the scarf has changed!
Last year, I really enjoyed making an autumn display with pottery in the appropriate colours, garnished with a few pumpkins, unusual-coloured squash, twigs and dried chestnut cases. Something about West German Pottery… it lends itself so easily to a themed display; a result of the multitude of colours and cacophony of glazes.
Tomorrow morning we’re off down to Devon for a week. I am fully intending to do not much more than walking, relaxing in front of a log fire whilst reading and drinking red wine. I’ve already got my stash of books prepared…
- The Fabulous Fifties in Pottery (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
- A Lot On My Plate (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
I really wanted to title this post, ‘A Lot On My West German Pottery Plate’ but then I realised that two of the plates I’m featuring aren’t from the country, let alone the region… ne’er mind!
This plate by Bjørn Wiinblad is part of the Rosenthal Studio Line. It’s tiny! I didn’t realise we had this but Aidan has firked it out this morning. ‘Firked’ is a verb coined by my mum which Aidan has adopted. It means to find something out. Well, this morning a few plates have been firked out for you to have a look at.
I’ve got grand plans for these plates if we ever buy a bigger house. Feature wall, somewhere prominent with a vast array of different plates adorning it… Vintage Vixen did a similar thing with her Wall of Misery; I want to make a Wall of Retro Platery.
This gorgeous piece of Italian Tourist Tattery was found by my sister Megan on a recent trip for her and my dad to Germany. It matched the lovely Italian vase I bought from Kevin Graham on our last trip, so I had to have it as soon as I saw it. It’s been featured on this blog before, but any excuse to show it again is good enough for me. These pieces were made in the 1960s in the Republic of San Marino. There are similarities to the Fat Lava of West German Pottery in the crusty, thick, white glaze around the edge; which contrasts in a stunning manner with the high-gloss smoothness of the central image.
This beautiful 1950s Ruscha wall plate depicts a market scene. Ruscha did a range of these plates and plaques which showed scenes from different streets or views. This is the only one I have, but it is a beauty.
The detail and effort that goes into these pieces shows up on the smallest scale. There are at least three different applications of glaze on her skirt.
Is it a horse? is it a deer? Is it a giraffe? Is it some strange hybrid of the three? I’m really not sure, but I do still like this little 1950s plate very much. The elongated necks and legs of these creatures, when coupled with their cheeky chirpy faces, create the cutesy kitsch feel of the 1950s. *Update* Aidan has just entered the room and mocked me considerably about this – apparently, they’re clearly giraffes. Fine then. Whatever. They’re giraffes.
This plate is marked underneath with ‘L’Ancora Alura 208′. At first glance, I thought this was another Italian company. However, a quick Google search has discovered that it’s actually a Dutch company: Ceramics Company van den Kroonenberg. The website I found is incredibly useful and definitely worth a visit – Dutch Pottery and Ceramics marks. They say about the pottery, ‘Industrial produced Retro PopArt decorative art pottery, L’Ancora ceramics, produced by Ceramics Company van den
Kroonenberg, with black mat fragments, scratched in lines and partial covered glazes as decoration, like girls & boys heads.’ The picture they have of the backstamp also matches mine perfectly.
There are probably more plates hidden and buried in various boxes around the house, in the loft and in our friend’s garage. I think my Wall of Retro Platery is well on its way though.
It’s been a little while since I’ve done a ‘Big Pot, Little Pot’ post, but thanks to the powers of my wonderful other half, I’ve got not one, but two sets of BPLP to share with you.
He’s even made these lovely pictures for me to show off the vases in their best light. These two are not exactly matching, but they are both of the same glaze. It’s a gorgeous 1950s Scheurich glaze: mottled grey background with incised stripes of yellow, pink, turquoise and the black with a zigzag detail. The smaller one is a 271 by Heinz Siery, whilst the larger is a whopping 270-50. We found the big one in Germany; it’s the first ’50s piece that Aidan has really liked – it was him that actually bought the 271 in the same glaze!
These two are a bit of a cheat BPLP really: I’m going off the pattern being the same rather than the same pot in different sizes. The smaller, blue one is a Jasba 1640-28 and the larger, red one is 1641-45. Interestingly, the form numbers for both the Scheurich and the Jasba are only one different, and it appears to be the handle on each one that shows a variation. We only noticed that the Jasbas were matching this afternoon as I was hoovering up! It’s not surprising that we don’t spot these things with the amount of stuff we have.
We’ve been to Romily and Hyde this afternoon for a charity shop hunt. Not much found in either place really, a couple of books, a retro 80s Jacques Vert top for me and a retro spaghetti tin. The weather is utterly horrendous, but I am getting a little bit excited about the potential for snow and -20 degrees weather in a few weeks’ time. We’re going to Devon at half-term and I would love an early snow week! Tomorrow, it’s Ghostpoet with some friends from work and, if I can persuade Aidan, the Vintage Village at Stockport in the morning. He’s making us homemade pizzas at the moment so maybe if I pronounce them delicious (which they will be anyway!), then I’ll be able persuade him to take me to the VV in the morning… we’ll see.
- Big Pot… (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
Not all West German pottery is gaudy and ostentatious. Some of it is subtle, muted even and, in many cases, all the more beautiful for it.
- West German Pottery Floor Vases (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
- Sunshine and Lightness Here… Really (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
- A Grey Day – The West German Pottery Way (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
I went through a period of taking pictures of ‘Big Pot Little Pot’ combinations, but today’s version is just pure and simple: BIG POT. This amazing pot is appearing courtesy of Richard (@dipperdog), a collector of West German Pottery who really knows his stuff, seeking out the very best in in the WGP world. You can be assured that if Richard likes it, it’s something of good design, style and quality.
This is made by the Roth factory, and I wouldn’t say they were normally known for their gigantic pottery. Skilful, unusual and detailed glazes, yes… but not size. They are usually a quality over quantity type of company. This one seems to combine both, however.
Look at that design – those handles are like the loops of a bow, or a cat’s ears. In fact, that’s exactly what it is now I’m looking at it – a cat’s face! I’m sorry, I have this odd thing of constantly looking for faces in everything, along with comparing people to animals and trying to name everything.
Anyway, that weird fact about me aside, this is a lovely pot and I’m so glad Richard let me post it up here. I’m off to a gig tonight, to see Beth Jeans Houghton at the Deaf Institute. I was there last night with friends for, what I thought was meant to be the Spotifriday night; presuming this to be indieriffic due to TDI’s usual music stylings… no, no it was not. Cheesy 80s and the Best of Jamaican Dancehall 2002 by the sound of it. And, as everyone’s talking about it, how glorious is this weather? Are we sure we’re in October, and we’ve not all experienced some mass ‘Flash Forward’ style event? It’s just glorious.
Speaking of which, I’m off to do a bit more reading of ‘Fingersmith’ in the garden. Hope you’re having a lovely Saturday too.
So, the pottery I bought from my parents… It was odd, really. As I was on the train on the way down to Stafford – apart from reading ‘How to Be a Woman’ by Caitlin Moran, which was killing me with restrained laughter – I was thinking about the pottery my dad said he’d bought from Germany. I genuinely considered if they’d found anything like a Schaffenacker. But as we’ve only found one in all of our trips over there, I thought the chances were slim.
First thing I saw as I walked into the kitchen where the pots were living was this:
My mum says my face was a picture; I pretty much launched myself at it whilst saying, “I’m having it! I’ll give you what you want for it!” We L.O.V.E. these. No other way to put it. And it’s only the second one we’ve ever had.
As if it couldn’t get any better, they also had one of these beauties:
It’s just gorgeous and matches my large vase beautifully. My sister, Megan, spotted both of these pieces. The Schaffenacker she says she knew I would like, but I think the Italian plate she was eyeing up for herself. No chance was I letting her keep it! Sorry to be selfish, Meg, but I love it too much!
I can only hope they get this lucky again when they visit Germany next…