Both the Chinese Fence pattern and the Oriental Bird pattern were popular in the early days, and here you have them both on the same piece. This pitcher is unmarked, so it could have been made by any of the porcelain factories operating in Staffordshire in the early 19th century. The blue outlines of the design were first fired on the surface, then the colors of red, green, blue, brown and puce were added in subsequent firings. Also, many details were entirely added by hand—all the flowers, the branches and trees, etc. In fact, the blue transfer was pretty sparse, so the intention was always to finish the design by hand in colors, since the blue outlines couldn’t stand on their own. A very unusual technique. It is high-quality, but it went through some stresses during the firing that are seen where the handle joins the body and on the side of the spout. Otherwise it is in just about perfect condition, with no repairs and only one small spot of wear to the decoration. It stands five inches tall and the decoration is in near-pristine condition. The flaws weren't enough for the workmen to consider this a waster when it came out of the kiln, since it was still perfectly useful, and the factory simply added decoration and sold it. In this regard it’s an example of the no-nonsense business practices of the Staffordshire ceramics industry. “Waste not, want not.”
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