In 1784 the import tax on tea was reduced. This was wonderful news for the middle class and less wealthy people as it made tea drinking affordable to them. Unfortunately, the tax on silver was increased at the same time. The combination of these two factors substantially increased the demand for ceramic tea services. Transferware had just been invented and was in the very early years of production. Some of the most beautiful and collectible transferware teapots were made during this period and well into the 20th century.
Today I am joining Lady Katherine Tea Parlor for a tea, Blue Monday hosted by Smiling Sally, Rhoda at Southern Hospitality, Rondi's Tea Party Tuesday, Table Top Tuesday at A Stroll Thru Life and The Gypsy's Corner for Three or more Tuesday. I'm serving a spiced tea and cinnamon swirl bread with honey butter.
I served my tea in an English transferware teapot by J & G Meakin in the Gainsborough pattern. It's a pretty blue transfer with fruits and flowers.
I chose the Charlotte pattern by Royal Staffordshire to compliment the teapot and teacups. Charlotte is a lovely pattern depicting a Victorian basket filled flowers. On the tray below, I've used a Charlotte creamer and open sugar bowl.
I used a vintage white table cloth with white flowers and blue embroidery.
I don't have fresh flowers so I put some pink silk roses in an antique silver, double handled vase. I love the look of these old silver pieces, even when they obviously could stand to be shined.
Isn't this a lovely toast rack? It's also in the Charlotte pattern and holds two slices of toast and has small bowls attached at each side for jam and butter. These are also great for bill sorting and holding small office supplies like paperclips.
I bought the crystal lamp at a garage sale a few years back for $1.50!
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