This example is a 20th century reproduction of an original 19th century figure group known as 'The Dandies.' New Staffordshire figurines are made and painted to resemble the quaint, naive look of originals. Here the lady wears a large pink and green hat and carries an umbrella. The young man wears blue and white striped trousers.
The surface of this piece is slightly crazed, as if the glaze has aged. Copies of antique Staffordshire figurines, pitchers or Toby mugs can be very deceptive. The surfaces of these new creations are often specially 'antiqued' at the factory to give the visual aura of an 18th century antique. So new pottery like the one in this listing, made in the image of an old Staffordshire piece, may be mistaken for the real thing.
Copies of figural Staffordshire pottery have been manufactured and sold in large numbers throughout the 20th century, particularly the mid to late 20th century. The differences in substance, manufacturing technique, quality, coloring, and decoration can be dramatic between old and new Staffordshire collectibles, but they can also sometimes be very subtle. Meanwhile, the differences in value are dramatic. New pieces typically may be purchased for just a few dollars, and by 'few' we mean, very few. So, while a price like that seen in this listing may seem cheap in comparison to prices typically asked for an antique figure, it actually isn't that great of a price. Not if taking into consideration that for that same amount you could have purchased a box full of these new from the manufacturer, rather than just one. This is just another collecting niche in which a little advance scholarship can be well worth the effort.
See the Favorite Links page for direction to collector specific information on Staffordshire figure collecting, with side-by side examples of various new pieces shown next to their authentically old counterparts.
Illustrations and Characteristics for Help in Identifying Many Confusing New Items
Item listings in this shop are intended to be viewed for educational purposes, only. Items in this shop are not for sale.