Saturday, November 23, 2013

Gobble Up These Turkey Transfer Ware Pieces

Each year I try to show you all some of the many wonderful vintage Turkey transferware plates that were produced specifically for the American market by the British.  This year I've got an array of fantastic pieces to show and share, like this turkey plate with the ever popular Vista border by Mason's. 

Let's recap on the history of these beautiful, highly collected wares before I show you some of the others I have for sale.

For some time after that first solemn feast in 1621, both the date and observance of Thanksgiving depended on national triumphs and local inclination until 1863, when President Lincoln proclaimed the fourth Thursday of November the nation's official Thanksgiving Day. By the 1870s, America's rising middle class hungered to celebrate the occasion with dinnerware specifically made for this special holiday.   England's profit minded potters responded to the people of the United States wishes with a series of delectable transfer-printed china patterns depicting the holiday's bird of choice.  Transfer ware depicting turkeys has been in production for over 100 years and remains as popular today, if not more so, than it was when first it came into being.  

 Vintage & antique turkey plates and platters are highly sought by collectors.  In fact, there are many transferware collectors who collect turkey patterns only. 

It's hard for me to choose a favorite, but right now I am loving this antique turkey platter by Ridgway dating back to as early as 1891. 
circa 1891-1920 Ridgway Brown transfer ware Turkey Platter

Transferware depicting turkeys comes in all colors, not just brown or brown polychrome.  Purple transfer ware is hard to find, but especially with a big Tom Turkey strutting his stuff!  Here, we have a gorgeous turkey sized platter by Royal Staffordshire /  Clarice Cliff with the Tonquin border.  

And you all may remember this Clarice Cliff Autumn Foliage plate from an orange and blue Thanksgiving table I set last year.
 Clarice Cliff Royal Staffordshire Blue Transferware Autumn Foliage Turkey Plate

Here is the matching platter, in brown.

I love to display a big turkey platter throughout the month of November, like this red one by Wood & Sons with the English Scenery border. 

Spode made lots of turkey platters and game bird series.  This next one is by far the most exciting one I've come across.  I acquired this along with the 12 matching game bird plates still in the box and they date to the 1930's!  The only time it was used was for a photo shoot for Taste of Home magazine.  So cool!

And this black polychrome platter by Midwinter compliments their Rural England pattern.  This one was featured in Romantic Homes magazine a couple of years ago when they interviewed me about turkey transferware.

 I usually get a request to find at least one of these every year. 

Do you have special dinnerware for Thanksgiving or an heirloom piece you use for the holidays?  What's your favorite of these?

Pride slays thanksgiving, but a humble mind is the soil out of which thanks naturally grow. A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he deserves.
-Henry Ward Beecher-

p/s  Delores at Vignette Design has also done a post on turkey plates…you can see it HERE

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