The many faces of Tuscan china: the real test of an expert

After over a year of collecting and selling tea china, I’m getting better at recognising china makers such as Royal Vale, Colclough and Paragon but others still surprise me.  I’ve still got a lot to learn and in a way it’s nice to be surprised by finding out that a particular piece is made by a maker that I wouldn’t have expected!

Tuscan china is one of the makes that always catches me out. There are so many different patterns and styles.  I find it difficult to find a uniting factor apart from the high quality finish of the items.  Tuscan china was made by R H and S L Plant at their Tuscan Works in Longton, Staffordshire.  From what I can find out, the pottery trade had been in the Plant family as far back as 1775 and it’s reassuring that they took their business seriously – displayed on the factory building were the words, “Our Work … Our Pride.”

Vintage Tuscan china tea set in the peach bloom style

One of the first Tuscan tea sets that I found – the peach hue is even lovelier in reality.

A picture of a peach coloured Tuscan English vintage china creamer or milk jug

And the matching creamer – such a cute bulbous shape!

Tuscan took pride not only in producing high quality china but also in technical developments. One of their achievements in the 1950s was developing a china base that had a faint pink shade rather than the regular white, which they called ‘Peach Bloom’.  The tea set and jug in the pictures above are examples of Peach Bloom and have a dreamy milky peach look to them. I think they look older than the 1950s and I wonder whether they were designed to look ‘vintage’ amongst their contemporaries…

Compare the Peach Bloom pieces with the lemon flower patterned “Albany” range below. I haven’t been able to find any tea sets in this pattern but I managed to find some gorgeous saucers, plates and a majestic cake serving plate.  I made a few three-tiered cake stands from them (one of which is in the pictures).  I also made some mini stands from the remaining saucers and side plates.  I sold the last remaining saucer to a customer who is planning her vintage themed wedding this year.  I’m hoping that I’ll get to see a few photos of the day as I think her selection of stands will look great in her venue.

3tier_yellowparagon3_cr

Three-tier cake stand made from gorgeous vintage Tuscan flower china – almost wish I’d kept some of these plates for my collection!

Yellow three tier cake stand made from vintage Tuscan flower china

The cupcakes were tasty too particularly with summer strawberries.

Sadly, like so many of the Staffordshire potteries, Tuscan china is no longer made; the brand continued until the 1970s and then they were then taken over by Wedgwood.

I have some Tuscan china in my shop at the moment – a set of side plates in the pattern below, ‘Love in the Mist’, went to a happy customer in Spain but I still have the creamer and bowl in the picture.

TuscanLoveMist_jugbowl2

Vintage Tuscan china sugar bowl and creamer in the pattern ‘Love in the Mist’ available from nancysteashop.etsy.com

Note: Information about Tuscan china gathered from the very helpful: http://www.thepotteries.org/

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2 responses to “The many faces of Tuscan china: the real test of an expert

  1. We have a mint full Tuscan Dinner Service “FALAISE” Pattern F173 which we wish to sell, can you help us with ant information please ?

    • Hi Ian,

      Thanks for your message. The Falaise pattern is very striking although not one we have owned. It really depends on what pieces you have. Your options are to approach a local antique/collectables dealer and see what he/she offers you for the complete set. You could sell it yourself on somewhere like ebay but it might be advisable to offer collection only rather than posting as it can be difficult to pack a whole set securely. Alternatively you could split the set into smaller sets, which would be easier to post. If there are trios, ie tea cups, saucers and plates (and the ones I have seen online are a pretty shape and quite sought after) you could sell them individually online yourself and should get at least £10 each for them if they are the ones I’ve seen. You could then sell the more difficult dinner plates, soup plates etc to a dealer. If you also have items such as a matching teapot, milk jug and sugar bowl, they would also be worth selling separately. Hope this helps, just let me know if you have any other questions!

      Rachel

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