Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Tea Tax of 1784 and it's Relation to Transferware

Prior to 1784, tea was smuggled into England.  In 1784, the East India Company and the London tea traders, unable to compete with the price of teas being sold on the black market, petitioned Prime Minister Pitt to reduce the tax on tea.   The Commutation Act 1784 was passed reducing the import tax on tea from 119% to only 12.5%.  This was wonderful news for the middle class and less wealthy people as it made tea drinking affordable to them.  Unfortunately though, 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 recently 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. 

I am re-posting photos of previous teascapes and tea tables.  Hope that is okay!  I have had to take a little time away from blogging for various reasons.  I miss it and will be back soon!

Strange how a teapot can represent at the same time the comforts of solitude and the pleasures of company.  ~Author Unknown~

Blue Transferware teascape: full post is HERE

I bought the crystal lamp at a garage sale a few years back for $1.50!  

Spode Byron Teas View full post HERE & HERE

Lavender Genteel HERE

Shabby Roses Teascape HERE

Green Transferware Tea Table view HERE

Cottage Ware and Spode Brown Transferware Teascape HERE

Spode Mayflower HERE & HERE

Spode Two Color Transferware Table view HERE

Lavender Genteel view HERE

Adams Fairy Villas - Teal Transferware Tea and tablescape view HERE

Blue and Yellow Transferware Tea Table  HERE

Breakfast with the Butler HERE

Whimsical Table for Two HERE

A Queen would like a tree full of tea cups, right?  My Transferware Teacup Christmas Tree HERE

Each cup of tea represents an imaginary voyage.  ~Catherine Douzel

I'm joining Laura at Decor to Adore for her High Tea Party

Show and Tell Friday @ My Romantic Home

Feathered Nest Friday @ French Country Cottage

Vintage Inspiration Friday @ Common Ground

Home Sweet Home Friday@ The Charm of Home


  1. What a beautiful tour of past posts. I enjoyed everyone, especially the Spode Mayflower. I recently found 2 teacups at Goodwill that are for sale at my Etsy shop. I wish I had the saucers to go with them because they are such beautiful delicate pieces. I think my favorites so far. I love the extra color of the flowers inside the cup.

  2. Oh,che dolci tavole da sogno ,hanno visto i miei occhi.Stupendo!Rosetta

  3. Nancy, I thought that I have seen most of your tables but apparently not. All the various patterns and your talent in pulling them all together are really stunning. I enjoyed them all so much and I am a history buff and loved reading about the rise of transferware. Can't decide which pattern I love more. Joni

  4. Nancy, I've had limited time for blogs this past week too. Although I'm just stopping by for a moment today, you can be certain I'll be back later to visit each one of these tables. Fabulous idea! ~ sarah

  5. Simply Beautiful,reminds me of when I was a child and had tea and toast with my Mother. So glad I found you.

  6. Oh my I am overcome with the beauty and detail that you put into your teas.

    As I have mentioned before I have red transferware but truly love the lavender and the green.

    My heart is going pitter pat over all your china. It is truly lovely.

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart for participating in the tea.

  7. Now, that was so enjoyable!!! Miss you and your tablescapes.....hope all is well...hugs...cleo

  8. This is all so beautiful but my favourite has to be the Lavender! It is so rare to come across.
    Love all the table settings!

  9. The two-color transferware is so special...they're all special! Thank you for sharing your gorgeous designs. Cherry Kay

  10. Hi Nancy,
    My heart is going pitter-patter! You have set so many wonderful tablescapes. Each one is unique and so lovely! I love the lavender although the red has long been a favourite with me. Thank you for sharing such loveliness.


  11. All are very beautiful, but my favorite is the green transferware. I wish there were more tables done in it.

  12. Gorgeous!...Everything!!! I love transferware and I think I'm partial to the brown and red, but the black transferware is pretty, too! I love your trays! So pretty!

  13. Nancy:

    I regulary read your blog and always love your tablescapes, but to see several of them grouped together in one post is amazing. You have so many lovely peices of transferware and you always display them in such a beautiful setting.

    - The Tablescaper

  14. I always love your photos. Praying all is well.

  15. All I can say is that my husband should be thankful that we don't live in Tulsa. All of my paycheck would be turned over to you!

    I have such a passion for transferware and you have the most amazing selection that I have ever seen.

    I just posted my first tablescape with an Adams pattern that I collect. However, in 15 years, I have not found very many pieces. If you ever get this pattern, please let me know!

  16. Hello Natasha,
    really a lovely tour through your wonderful transferware land. You always bring the transferware to its best. Espacially the shabby roses tea is wonderful. I learned to love transferware by visiting your blog.
    Best greetings, Johanna

  17. Such lovely detail. You are so talented!
    Thanks for the history lesson too!

  18. Your tables are full of so many beautiful touches. So gentile and so welcoming. I loved seeing each one and have spent hours looking them over. Thanks so much for sharing so much of yourself. Thanks too for your kind comments and dropping in.

  19. Oh, my goodness,Nancy! I'm dizzy just seeing all of your beautiful dishes and tea settings. You have the most glorious dishes and really know how to set a beautiful table.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  20. What a treat to see all of these tea-scapes! Each one was beautiful! I especially like the one with the table-bird-cage, very unique!


  21. This is so beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing all these beautiful tea sets. i had to go over a second time to make sure I didn't miss anything. The transferware, the linens, all of it, GREAT! Ginger

  22. Oh Nancy! I think any one of these would be "fit fir a queen." I thought I would tell you my favorite but, then I lost count of which ones I would choose! LOL I think it would be the green, the brown or the Spode lavender. Just beautiful! Thanks so much for linking up! I really enjoyed that!

  23. Just gorgeous and amazing at all the different settings, Each one so lovely. Thanks so much for linking up with VIF!

  24. Nancy, This is an encyclopedia of tea and transferware beauty! Oh my where do I begin. I love the settings you put all of your gorgeous dishes in!!!!
    The brown transferwrare tea cup and saucer makes me swooon! I would love to take tea in that pretty piece.
    Your attention to detail is simply the best! What a gorgeous and informative stop!

  25. You have such lovely transferware! I scour all the flea markets I go to (we live in Germany) for transferware. I have tons and use it now for our every day dishes. It doesn't bother me that the patterns are mixed. That's what makes it special. I also have a bunch of it on my etsy shop.

    I remember your tea cup tree and MUST do one for our dining room this coming holiday season. I sent the link to my mom too and she plans to do one too (she too has LOADS of tea sets). You've inspired us!


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