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Monday, June 25, 2012

Tea Cup Tuesday-Tips for Collectors

Hello all,
Welcome to Tea Cup Tuesday!

I love to go to the flea market or antique shop and look for tea cups.
When I find one I love, I have a certain way of checking it out before I get too excited about it.
I thought I might share the process I go through for some of you who are new to collecting, just in case it might be helpful and maximize your collecting pleasure! 

 (Here is a pretty Shelley I bought online, only to find it had a hairline crack!)

The first thing I do when a tea cup catches my eye, is to look at the price.
I have a number in my head I am willing to pay for a tea cup, if it is over that,
I put it back down : (   
Unless.....I so totally love it and think I may never ever in a million years see one like it again,
and then I may make an exception : )


Before I choose a tea cups for friend, family or personal pleasure....I begin a visual, auditory and tactile inspection of the cup:  

(This apple blossom pattern is by Salisbury...I loved this cup when I saw it, and was happy to bring it home.)

Are there any cracks, chips or blemishes? 
This seems like it would be an easy one to answer.
To check this out I use my index finger to trace the cup all around the rim, the handle, the sides, the foot, and the bottom, and inside with my eyes closed...and see if I feel any chips, cracks, blemishes or???

These two dark marks are raised and a little rough feeling to the finger.
I especially watch out for this kind of mark.These are in the bottom of the cup.

A little nubbly...right where you hold the handle, so you feel it every time!

 Visually inspect the cup for anything obvious...like this dark spot.

(Here is the hairline crack I found when I got home, on the apple blossom cup above...boo hoo!)

Hold it by the handle and ping gently with finger.
If it pings, that is a good sign. If it is a dull sound, maybe not...check for cracks again.

Hold up to the light and look for signs of a crack.
It may look like a slightly darker line, or even a lighter line.
I have seen some that look like someone tried to repair it.

 (Here in the bottom of the pretty Shelley.....is the crack!
Couldn't see it on eBay, but....I should have known as the cup only sold for $15
...this may be one of those "too good to be true" stories!)

Is it balanced?
Some times I will excitedly grab a cup I see, do my check but forget to do this step,
only to find out when I get home it is wobbly. 
Look to see if the cup sits fully on the saucer....does the saucer rock rock on the table surface?
Sometimes I will even see a cup that is crooked. 

Do the backstamps match?
I have ended up surprised after arriving home to see they are not!  
And do you care?
I don't always, but I like it better if they do.
It may indicate that a piece was replaced...or even that the two pieces are not even the same pattern or company, but someone thought they looked really good together.
I bought a demitasse cup set once that was like this, one piece from France and one from Germany.


 But the set looks lovely together!

 I was so busy looking at the pretty cup....I probably only looked at the one backstamp.

Whoever matched them up did a fine job!

 Now I take my information and I compare my findings to the price, the age of the cup, and the personal value to me as in a special pattern I have been looking for, how rare they may be... and then I decide whether or not to purchase it. And if I am totally in love with it....and the price is good, and I don't think I will be able to sleep that night if I do not bring it home.........I throw out all my investigations and buy it anyways!

Thank you so much for coming by for a visit!
I almost didn't make my post as I have been having computer issues this week...Gak!

Martha and I totally love hosting Tea Cup Tuesday and we love to come by and visit you all.
If you would like to play along, just go and create a post with a tea cup in it, and come back here and link up below with the URL to your post.


Giveaway JULY coming up soon!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Tea Cup Tuesday-June Cup

Hello All
Welcome to Tea Cup Tuesday!

Time to share a June cup to celebrate the beginning of Summer.
We have had such beautiful weather already, that it has felt like summer.
One more day and it will be official...Yay!

Summer is here....and the living is easy.............

This cup is beautifully adorned with summer roses of the prettiest pinks!

What a lovely handle, sweetly decorated with touches of gold.

I purchased this cup for my daughter as she was a June baby. 
On her birthday this year, she used this cup at her birthday tea.

A Royal Albert Beauty!

On the day of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebration, a package arrived for me from England!
Inside I found this gorgeous hand made card, and a tea towel featuring the Queen herself! 
Diane, thank you so very much for your very kind and thoughtful gift!

Thank you so much for stopping by for Tea Cup Tuesday with Martha and I.
Do visit Martha as she is a hoot as well as has more tea cups than Imelda had shoes!
Martha is the best!
I am planning a Giveaway for July!
Fab goodies are being prepared....
come back and see!

If you would like to join in a share your tea cups, just go and create a post with the tea cup in it, then come back here and link up that post below. 
We would all love to come over and visit you!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Tea Cup Tuesday-Coalport

(Image taken from "An Illustrated Encyclopedia of British Pottery and Porcelain")


Hello All!
Welcome to Tea Cup Tuesday!
Today  I am sharing about one of my favorite make of china....Coalport.

This vibrant floral cup is a beautiful example of Coalports quality.
I received this trio from Martha in our
Easter Basket Tea Cup swap!
Lucky me!

Wonderful design, love the mix of ruffled edges and plain!
This is a truly dainty and feminine set.
Perfect for afternoon tea in the garden.

Here is another gorgeous example given to me by my
younger sister. 
I adore the handle and the scalloped footing.

See what I mean???

 And this incredible art work in stunning blue!
Coalport cups feel so good in the hand and this one is light as a feather.

Here is the backstamp for the blue and white cup.

This portion of a page from Geoffrey A. Godden's book Encyclopedia of British Pottery and Porcelain Marks indicates this cup was manufactured after 1920 but before 1939.

1796-1815 Pottery from Coalport's was not marked, but from 1805-1810 they began to use the simple backstamp of "Coalbrookdale" alone, these were very rare. From then on Coalport's backstamps went from simple letters, to very fancy designs. They even had some that were imitations of Meissen!
Being a company that began with John Rose in the late 1700s, and endured as long as it did with great quality, it is no wonder I find this cup very satisfying : )

 Thank you so much for stopping by! 
If you would like to play along, just create a post with a tea cup in it you would like to share, then come back here and sign up with Linky tools below.
I am truly enjoying visiting you all and seeing your tea cups, and hearing about your life.
(To see a post about my visit to the Victorian era Gladstone Pottery Museum in Stoke on Trent England....in which you can see the bottle kilns as in the engraved image at the top of this post..... go HERE)

Monday, June 4, 2012

Tea Cup Tuesday-Sunny Yellow

Hello All!
Welcome to Tea Cup Tuesday
Where Martha and I show off our love of tea cups.
 I am glad you are here! 

Here is one of my very favorite tea cups. 
I think what attracts me the most to this cup is the lovely design,
can you see the pattern in the yellow areas?
Looks almost French to me.

And I really do love the coloring of this cup. 
The yellow mixed with the beautiful pinks, blues, lilacs,
yellow and greens complements so well.

I even love the shape of this cup.
It is only slightly footed and has a lovely elegant handle trimmed in gold.

This cup was manufactured by Tuscan China in England.
I know this cup was created before 1967 as Wedgwood bought them out and added "Royal" in front of Tuscan. The Plant family who originated the company seems to go all the way back to 1775. The entire family was involved in the business and they made some important discoveries in manufacturing and designing china before merging with Susie Cooper in the 1950s before Wedgwood came along. 
(the gold numbers are the patten #)

Did I ever mention to you all that I stumbled upon two pottery books
for a buck at a flea market this past spring?
This is one of them, and it was very useful in researching my cup. The book is called "Encyclopedia of British Pottery and Porcelain Marks" and written by Geoffrey A. Godden F. R. S.A.  The Plant family has three pages! Upper left of the page, the middle stamp is the one on the bottom of my cup, and it says...1947+...so I can guess was made between 1947 and 1961. I think it was closer to 1950.

Thank you all so much for stopping by!
I haven't been posting that often in the past few months, you may wonder where all my crafting is???
Me too! Gak! Real life is interfering with my blogging! Has this ever happened to you?
I do hope to be back in the swing of crafting and blogging....and videos soon!
I appreciate every visit you make to my blog!


If you would like to join in, just create a post with the tea cup in it you would love to share, then come back here and sign up with Linky Tools below. 
Martha and I would love to come and see you too!
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