We have a collection of antique brown transferware (dinnerware) - a popular collectible. It uses transfer printing, a decorative technique which was developed in the mid-18th century in England and was particularly popular around the Staffordshire region.
The transfer making process started with an engraved copper plate similar to those used for making paper engravings. The plate was used to print the pattern on tissue paper, then the tissue paper transfered the wet ink to the ceramic surface. The ceramic was then fired in a low temperature kiln to fix the pattern. Before transfer printing, ceramics were hand painted which was a laborious and expensive process. Transferware comes in various colors including pink, red, green, purple, mulberry, black, yellow and of course blue which is the most sought after of colours.
Here are three new finds - hand vases of course. Note that the white vase is a leftie. Large left handed vases are very rare, although vintage miniature hand vases by Fenton and L.E. Smith are all left handed.
Unfortunately, the top part of the amber vase appears to have been removed
- a fact not disclosed prior to sale by the Ebay seller.
Ebay is full of Staffordshire fakes, phonies and repros. (reproductions) that dealers knowingly or unknowingly describe as "antique" or "vintage". A quick look at Ebay today found some of the following glaring misidentifications of Staffordshire wannabe's.
The above piece is described as a rare Staffordshire piece from the 1850's. It is not rare and most definitely not from the 1850's - probably fresh off the boat from China circa 2011. It does not even come close to resembling any Staffordshire dog from the 19 century and most certainly is not even a reproduction based on an original mold. In short, "Staffordshire" doesn't come more fake than this!
This pair of dogs is currently described on Ebay as "vintage" and the seller acknowledges in the descritpion that he/she doesn't know if they are genuine Staffordshire or reproductions. Well, they are fakes made to look old. Note the "paint strokes" made to look "feathery", as well as the brand new crazing. Crazing is no longer a sign of age. Forgers have figured out how to craze pieces in the factory...even how to make pieces look aged and dirty. The above dogs are vintage 2011 and also likely from China. The real dogs are pictured below and are clearly much finer, hand painted dogs.
Below is a clever pair of reproduction recumbent Staffordshire dogs. Although well made, they do not fool anyone who knows their Staffordshire. The similar (mirror image) paint strokes and dull gold collars and chain shout FAKE. Unfortunately, someone has already bid $95.00 for these dogs which is probably almost double their value. Were these genuine recumbent Staffordshire dogs they would be worth atleast $1500 and a seller would not be starting the bidding at $95.00.
Here's the real deal below!
The following figures below are other fakes, phonies and repros currently on Ebay.