When I started buying Colclough china the first sets that I bought were from the Ballet and Harlequin ranges. These simple and elegant tea sets were the first examples of non-flowered vintage china that I’d seen and I loved them! At first I didn’t realise that there were two designs. I had noticed that some of the cups had less gold on them and were a slightly different shape but the differences are so subtle, I had thought it was individual variation, particularly because the different design names are used inconsistently.
Then I started examining them more closely and did some more reading and realised that there are indeed two different designs. Whilst the saucers and plates are the same, the cups are slightly different. The cup in the first picture is Harlequin and the cup in the picture below is Ballet.
The Harlequin cup doesn’t have a gold line inside the rim of the cup and the white around the base is narrower giving the cup a more “cinched in” look. I like them both. The beauty of the simple design and colour of this china is that the pieces match so well with a variety of other china – patterned or plain.
As I mentioned in my previous post, Colclough started making Royal Vale china after they were given a royal licence. But even before that the company had been making china with a ‘Vale bone china’ backstamp after Colclough’s Vale Potteries in Longton, Stoke-On-Trent, Staffordshire. I usually associate Vale and Royal Vale china with this classic shaped cup (below). The plain pastel colours have also been very popular and I was thrilled to find these spotty and starry patterns!
This one I made up from a spare spotty saucer and starry cup and plate. It went to a lovely home in Malaysia.