Sunday, December 03, 2006

My collection... I have several pieces in my Powell / Bishop & Stonier collection that have oriental-type designs. Some of my Oriental Ivory pieces I have already discussed in a previous post but as discussed, the oriental theme was re-interpreted in the 20th century in Art Deco designs. One example of this is a baluster vase which has a freize of dragons and oriental wheels, banded by a Greek key design. Below the freize are fruit and flower vignettes on a ground colour of black. Black seemed to be a popular colour for Art Deco design because of it's strong graphic quality which drew attention to form and individual motifs. When described like this, it appears to be rather a mish-max of design ideas and indeed, it is not to everyones taste.


joyce said...

OK, help me with this. I have this plate, a nice,white, well behaved, dinner plate. I picked it up at at salvation army store in NYC about 10 years ago. Now, it does not fit in with my other white plates so my husband says to toss it. However, the maker's mark is rather nice and I think the plate it too nice to simply toss. The mark is a Powell & Bishop with the expression "honi soit qui maly pense". Do people collect these? Should I find it a better home?

bisto boy said...

hi Joyce,

i've just had a look at the website of and checked their marks page for the Powell & Bishop partnership. They have a photo of the mark you mention which includes the royal coat of arms (the Honi Soit ... part). It looks like this mark was used on their plain ironstone wares which were mainly exported to the USA. If it is simply plain white, there are some collectors for ironstone, but not many. Most seem to be more interested in the usual manufacturer of Masons. If, however, there is a small gilded leaf design on it, this is classed as tealeaf design ware and there is a world wide collectors group for this. A google search will put you on the right track. the best of luck!

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Sometimes, life doesn't turn out the way you expected. And sometimes, it is exactly as it was 'meant' to be. But whilst i'm not a believer in fate or fatalism, I do believe that life is a both a learning experience and an obstacle course to be climbed and clambered over in the most creative way possible! In doing so, you'll get to where you should be even if it's not where you'd imagined.