Wednesday, January 17, 2018


My dresser has some new items: small platters and children's mugs! Click on the photo to make it larger.

I can't believe it has been five years and 285 posts! I have learned so much from the study of transferware patterns and I have enjoyed writing about new discoveries (at least to me).  However, I mainly want to thank everyone who reads my blog. As I said last year, there would be no blog without readers and encouragement.

Below are some of my posts that are the most popular.

The Clematis post remains my most popular post ever!  This may be because people think this is a horticultural post.  Also, the pattern is gorgeous.

Toast Water Jug and Recipes.  Probably popular because of the delicious recipes.  I jest.

Two Color Transferware. 

Custard Cups


Aesop's Fables and The Dog in the Manger 

Here are some of my posts that have been popular during the last year.

Joel Roberts Poinsett and Chile and American Diplomacy

Cape Coast Castle and Slavery

Transferware Pap Boats

Transferware Collectors Club 2017 Annual Meeting 
This is not my collection, but I wish it were!

Thanks again for a wonderful five years of "Dishy News!"

Monday, January 15, 2018


Elkin, Knight & Co. (1822-1826) Cat Wearing Clothes 4 inch plate.

January 14 is National Dress Up Your Pet Day.  Really.  There is a national day for everything.  I would have ignored this special day if I hadn't owned a charming plate that shows a cat wearing clothes! It is also walking on its hind legs.  My cats would never wear clothes or walk on hind legs without a fight!  The pussy cat pictured in this pattern seems much more docile that Charlotte or Percy.  It seems quite happy to entertain the little girl.  I, in turn, am entertained by this delightful pattern.

Close-up of Cat Wearing Clothes. Notice the delight on the face of the little girl.  Her mother too.  And the cat!

There is nothing but disdain on Percy's face for the cat wearing clothes!

Sunday, January 14, 2018


F & R Pratt multicolored transfer print "The Hop Queen" with a malachite border, ca. 1851

My husband bought a lovely Prattware comport printed with a pattern called "The Hop Queen."  I am glad he did because I love the bright colors and charming scene of a little girl being decorated with a crown of hop flowers.  I learned it was copied from the 1835 painting by W.F. Witherington titled "The Crown of Hops" or "The Hop Garland."

"The Crown of Hops" by W.F. Witherington, ca. 1855

I encouraged David to buy more of these lovely multicolored transferware plates and comports.  Be careful what you encourage!

Some Prattware comports: "The Hop Queen" and "The Blind Fiddler." There are two of each pattern, although with different borders. Click on the photo to make it larger.

Below is a photo of the the other pattern, "The Blind Fiddler," shown in the grouping above.

Pratt Pottery "The Blind Fiddler" copied from a painting by Sir David Wilkie. The border is called the 1-2-3 border.

"The Blind Fiddler" by Sir David Wilkie, 1806.
According to K.V. Mortimer's book "Pot -Lids," much, if not most, of the patterns on what he calls ware (not pot lids, but dishes and comports) were copied from famous and well-loved paintings. The book is illustrated with photos of lovely patterns with many different borders.  I recommend Mortimer's book to anyone to wants more knowledge about this type of transferware.  I, on the other hand, just want more of the ware!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018


Child's plate, "Hold Out Your Hand You Rascal," with a molded alphabet border.

A child's plate with the text "Hold Your Hand Out Your Rascal" didn't surprise me.  A teacher hitting a child's hand with a switch was something most children could relate to in the 19th century in England and America. The plate with the molded alphabet border was intended as a gift for a child. Perhaps as a warning.  And, although some of us look at this pattern as inappropriate for today's child, it was seen as appropriate and humorous in the 19th century.

I thought I'd learn about corporal (physical) punishment in schools today.  I knew corporal punishment in schools was common in England and the United States in the 19th century.  And before.  I didn't realize that it remained legal in England and America throughout the 20th century.  England didn't abolish corporal punishment in state schools until 1986 and in public and private schools that received no state funding (what we'd call private schools in the U.S.) until 1998.  However, in the United States, there is no Federal law outlawing corporal punishment! As of 2014, there are still nineteen states that allow it: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Wyoming. That said, the first state to outlaw corporal punishment was New Jersey in 1867.  The second was Massachusetts in 1971!  One hundred and four years later.  To say I was surprised is an understatement.  I will add that some states require parental permission for corporal punishment.

My own state of origin, Pennsylvania, didn't outlaw corporal punishment until 2005.  It was never anything I saw or experienced when I went to a Philadelphia public elementary school in the 1950s.  My mother, who went to the same elementary school in the 1920s, said she did witness corporal punishment. Mainly boys.

What about corporal punishment such as spanking by a parent?  That is a topic for you to explore, but it is legal in every U.S. state.

I digress as usual because I was flabbergasted that corporal punishment was still legal in schools in 19 states and in every private home in every state.  Transferware patterns continue to open windows onto new knowledge.

One more pattern.  Below is a pot lid found in the Transferware Collectors Club Database of Patterns and Sources.  The boy is about to be birched or beaten by his teacher (or parent) with a birch stick.

"A Rebel, or Jack at Old Birch's" 2.88 inch pot lid.

Sunday, December 24, 2017


Davenport (1794-1887) 19.75 inch by 15.75 inch platter "Poinsett's Defence (sic)," ca. 1835.

I started this blog to share with you many of the things I learn from the study of transferware.  I am still pleasantly surprised when I discover something new.*  There was a beautiful red printed platter on eBay that showed what appears to be a political rally in the center and a border filled with the the eagle and motto (E Pluribus Unum) of the seal of the United States.   The pattern is not found in any of my books nor is it known by any of my more knowledgeable transferware friends.  So, I did some research and some educated guessing.

Center of the platter.

Joel Roberts Poinsett (1779-1851), who may be the man on the balcony holding the American flag, was the American Consul in Chile. He was appointed by President James Monroe in 1809.  Although Chile was still part of Spain and the United States was diplomatically neutral, Poinsett wrote a constitution for Chile that was modeled on the Constitution of the United States. The celebration of this new constitution, July 4, 1812 (note the significance of July 4), may be the theme of this pattern.  The words "Poinsett's Defence (sic)," which are printed under the center of the pattern, may refer to Poinsett's defense of Chile's desire for independence from Spain.  Although the American flag in the center pattern and the seal of the United States in the border indicate the strong ties of the United States and Chile, remember that the United States continued to remain neutral in Chile's fight for independence.  It is odd that the U.S. Consul, Poinsett, seemed to act on his own. Something I doubt.  From what I have read, it's hard to know where idealism and self interest begin and end.  Mainly on the part of the United States.

I will add that I never heard of Poinsett before, although I may have read that he gave his name to the ubiquitous plants that are popular at Christmas.  I also learned that he was one of the founders, among many other things in his interesting life, of the Smithsonian Institution.  I may be wrong about everything I have written.  Let me know what you think!

The Poinsettia is named for Joel Roberts Poinsett

*Transferware patterns continue to be an education.  I added this one to the Transferware Collectors Club Database of Patterns and Sources (nearly 15,000 patterns and 800 sources).  If you like learning new things as well as looking at beautiful items, join the TCC!

Sunday, December 3, 2017


All twelve Wedgwood Month tiles.  Click on the photo to make it larger.

I always plan to write something about Wedgwood's Month tiles and plates around the New Year, but I get too busy.  So, I decided to start early.

Helen J.A. Miles (fl. 1860-1893) designed several series of tiles for Wedgwood, one of which was "Months."  The tiles were so popular that Wedgwood eventually used the tile patterns on plates, along with borders from some of their well-known dinner services.  I have many variations of the 12 patterns to show you.  I am sure there are more, so please let me know if there is something I am missing.  (There are a lot of photos, so if you don't have time to see them all, please don't miss the beautiful fireplace surround at the bottom of this post.)  *Also, see a link to more photos and information.


"January" 6 inch tile

"January" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Mekado border


"February" 6 inch tile printed in red. The name of the month is missing.

"February" 6 inch tile. It is printed in brown and painted.

"February" 8 inch tile is a six inch pattern with the addition of an aesthetic border.

"February" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Mekado border

"February" 10 inch plate.  Notice that the tile shape is gone.  The pattern fits the plate and uses Wedgwood's Ferrara border.


"March" 6 inch tile.

"March" 10 inch plate printed in brown with Wedgwood's Florentine border.

"March" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Florentine border.


"April" 6 inch tile printed in blue.

"April" six inch tile.  Notice that the word "April" is in a different place than on the tile above.

"April" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Ivanhoe border.  Notice that the word "April" has moved again!


"May" 6 inch tile.

"May" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Florentine border

"May" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Mekado border.


"June" 6 inch tile.

"June" 8 inch tile with the addition of an Aesthetic border.

"June" 10 inc plate with Wedgwood's Florentine border.

"June" octagonal plate with a floral border that is unknown to me.


"July" 6 inch tile.

"July" 6 inch tile printed in black.

"July" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Mekado border.  It looks as if the painting wasn't finished!

"July" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Mekado border.  Better painting than the last plate.

"July" 10 inch plate with a border that is unknown to me.  Notice that the name of the month is missing.


"August" 6 inch tile.

"August" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Mekado border.

"August" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Florentine border.

"August" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Ivanhoe border.


"September" 6 inch tile.
"September" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Florentine border.

"September" 10 inch plate,  printed in green, with Wedgwood's Mekado border.

"September" 10 inch octagonal plate with a floral border.

"September" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Mekado border.  The colors are my personal favorite.  The marks on the back of this plate are seen below.

Marks that are found on the back of the "September" plate seen above.  Notice the unusual spelling of "Mekado". 


"October" 6 inch tile

"October" 6 inch tile printed in red.

"October" 8 inch tile with an Aesthetic border.

"October" octagonal plate with a floral border.

"October" 10 inch plate without the tile shape. The border is Wedgwood's Ferrara border.


"November" 6 inch tile.

"November" 8 inch tile with the addition of an Aesthetic border.


"December" 6 inch tile

"December" 8 inch tile.  It is a 6 inch pattern with the addition of an Aesthetic border.

"December" 10 inch plate with Wedgwood's Ferrara border. The word December is on the left by the girl's feet.

One more thing.  Below is a fireplace surrounded by Wedgwood Month tiles.  It is in the home of Dora Landey's daughter.  Dora is an antiques dealer who sells mainly transferware.  The tiles were a gift for her daughter's new house.

Fireplace with Wedgwood 6 inch Month tile surround (mainly).

I'll add that Wedgwood Month tiles and plates make excellent birthday gifts. Here are two for friends with February and July birthdays.

"February" and "July" 8 inch tiles.

*For more Months information and photos, see Gordon Hepworth's Old English (The Months). Tiles