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Collecting Clarice Cliff

If you’ve watched any episode of the Antiques Roadshow then you’ll have come across the name Clarice Cliff. In all my years of collecting, I never found a piece while thrifting. That was until today – I found my first pieces of Clarice Cliff at my local Savers here in Metrowest Boston. Imagine my delight !


But, don’t be fooled. This isn’t the stuff that goes for thousands of pounds / dollars. It’s her later stuff under the Royal Staffordshire brand. Still, it was such a thrill to find this tea set, that I had to dive in and find out more about Clarice Cliff the woman. So as I sip my first cup of earl grey tea, in these vintage cups, I hope you will become as enamoured as I was after reading this post.

Processed with MOLDIV
Clarice Cliff Teacup and Saucer in the Devonshire pattern by Royal Staffordshire Ceramics

According to the website ” The most prolific and possibly important Art Deco ceramic designer of the 20th century “. Though I was familiar with the name, I wasn’t as familiar with her work and her her apparent huge contribution to the Art Deco movement. She was also something of a trailblazer becoming a female leading ceramic artist at a time when that was fairly uncommon. What I found most interesting was her account in 1972 , when she gave an interview at her exhibition in Brighton England.

clarice cliff interview
Interview text via

Here are some examples of Clarice Cliff pieces. Note the intricate handprinted designs and the vivid colours in the Bizarre ware pieces (at the top).


Notable Facts about the woman – Clarice Cliff

  • Born January 20th 1899 in Tunstall Stoke on Trent
  • Began working at age 13 in “The Potteries”
  • Given her own studio after moving to AJ Wilkinson pottery factory in 1916
  • Most known for her line of “Bizarre” ware which she launched in 1922
  • Married later in life to her then boss Colley Shorter in 1940
  • After Shorter’s death, Clarice sells the business to Midwinter
  • In 1972, Clarice Cliff’s work was exhibited in Brighton
  • She died October 23 1972 suddenly
  • In 1999 her centenary was celebrated worldwide



Clarice Cliff was known for her geometric Art Deco style pottery sold under Newport Pottery. By the end of the 1920’s she had a team of 70 decorators working under her direction. Some of her most sought after designs are Bizarre and Fantasque which display Modern Cubism styles of the Art Deco Period. “Cubism” is a term for a painting style that puts in place geometrical shapes for natural forms. Rare pieces of these sell for thousands.

My teacup and saucer was not an example of either of these styles and was likely to have been produced in the late 60’s or 70’s based on the backstamp information I have found to date. Still, it will be cherished as my first piece of Clarice Cliff found in the wild! I found two teacups and matching saucers. They are a much welcomed addition to my teacup collection. And… Who knows, I may start collecting more pieces in the future.

Backstamp of Royal Staffordshire Ceramics by Clarice Cliff (Devonshire)

Suggested Books

If you’re going to collect Clarice Cliff, I highly recommend that you pick up a few books. I usually see if I can source these titles at the library first. Don’t underestimate the power of your local library (and make friends with the librarian too, who can help you search for materials from the Art Deco period). Having a copy of the book in hand is great, because I can then flip through the resources, before committing to the purchase.

A must have for new collectors though is Clarice Cliff for Collectors  by Greg Slater as well as Leonard Griffin’s book on Bizarre ware. There are other great titles, but these I found the most helpful. Be mindful of fakes, there are a lot of them out there. I would suggest joining one of the Clarice Cliff collector communities, if you have questions about whether a piece is genuine or not. Backstamps are not always a foolproof method of determining the whether a piece is genuine.

Clarice Cliff for Collectors
Clarice Cliff for Collectors


The Art of Bizarre

Recommended websites on Clarice Cliff

Christie’s guide to collecting Clarice Cliff  the auction powerhouse writes a great summary with enough information for the budding collector or someone with an interest in knowing more about Art Deco.

Buying Clarice Cliff  Andrew Muir is a well known collector and dealer of Clarice Cliff. On his website you can buy and sell pieces as well as have them appraised. Of course if the Antiques Roadshow is coming your way, you can always line up and get it appraised in person !

Victoria and Albert Museum  One of my favourite FREE museums in London. The V&A cover the Art Deco influence of Clarice Cliff. There are also wonderful images of the pieces displayed as part of the their collection. A must see if you’re ever able to make it to London.

If you collect Clarice Cliff, please leave a comment below ! I’d love to know what’s in your collection and what made you decide to collect her pieces.



#TeacupTuesday Favourites September 2017

SEPTEMBER, a month of absolute contrasts here in New England. It was absurdly hot some days,  though there were signs of Autumn temps sneaking in a few days in the month.

Still, every day was perfect for tea. I have been quietly enjoying Harney & Sons Cinnamon Sunset Black tea with orange and cloves. It is sumptuous and rich and I think a lovely afternoon tea for the Autumn. The notes of cinnamon and clove really awaken the senses. My husband says it smells like Christmas every time I drink it.  I  recommend that it is brewed as instructed, and drunk from a bone china teacup. Have you tried it ?


And so like the weather, my picks for this month are varied. From collections displayed as part of milestone birthday celebration, to an Alice in Wonderland teacup.

Here are my #teacuptuesday favourites for the month of September 2017.

Do you have a favourite ?

Ahoy Mateys! Happy Teacup Tuesday perhaps washed down with a bottle of rum me hearties 😉 •••••••••••••••••••••••• Goodness where to start!? We had a fun afternoon at the grand opening of the new Hamburg Inn location. If you're ever in Iowa City, I definitely recommend eating there and don't forget a pie shake! 😊 And then we walked, sang, and shouted for our elementary school in the City High parade. I love this town! ••••••••••••••••••••••••• I'll talk more about this next Tuesday but on Saturday when I flew into Chicago from LA I decided to go enjoy afternoon tea before driving home. What a delightful treat! Also after navigating LA freeways and inner city Chicago without any mishaps, I feel like I can do anything haha! •••••••••••••••••••••• I want to give a shout out to my sweetheart of a friend Bonnie. You count yourself lucky if you have a close friend like Bonnie. Only a week out from surgery and still very much recovering, she didn't even hesitate when I asked if I could stay with her for a week. We definitely didn't get to spend as much time together as we would've liked because of work but I think we treasured the time we did have. -I think some of my favourite moments were wearing my heels to the grocery store but bringing flats just in case and her three year old did the same, brought her sparkly shoes and some plain ones just in case. 😂 -All the kids waiting up for me and showing off the night I got there. -Spending time in the kitchen together. -Introducing me at church as her dear friend. -Our wonderful relaxing beach day. Being able to be myself and chat for awhile but also not feel bad for dozing off for a bit in the sun. -The drive home, picking out songs for Bonnie and her husband to guess. Whoever guessed the song title first, won. Such giggles! -Playing Anomia the night before I left with Bonnie, her dad, and her husband Spencer. The howls of laughter and fun just warmed my heart. I love that girl. She's one of my special ones. ❤️ •••••••••••••••••••••• How has your week been? Do anything exciting? Let's chat in the comments! 😘

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A Vintage Flicker of Autumn

Autumn is a great time of year, especially here in New England.  While there appears to be something of an Indian Summer at the moment, one can see slow evidence of the subtle change from one season to another. So if you can, stop and take a moment to notice your surroundings. It will literally be changing each day.

The look of Autumn

In other news I am still SLOWLY unpacking my vintage haul from my most recent trip to England this Summer. It’s lovely to rediscover all the little treasures I found. There were china, glassware, trinkets, linens…. there’s a long list or three large moving boxes full.

Here are a few of my favourites so far. Perfect for the upcoming cooler holiday entertaining and fireplace season ahead.

Vintage pilsner glass available at Vintage Flicker
Vintage MCM pilsner glass
Vintage MCM cut glass Decanters (Japan)
Vintage small foldout shell style snack server
Olde Countryside plates by Johnson Brothers

We are still on the hunt for a new home. But while we do, I’ve decided to treasure our current one. Decluttering continues but now more so with an emphasis on surrounding our home with things that bring us joy. If you follow Vintage Flicker on Instagram (and if you haven’t why not ? ), you’ll have seen photos of the quiet corner in our upstairs lounge, where I generally have my first cup of tea before the rest of the house is awake. I call this my Hygge corner. It’s serene and peaceful.  For the Autumn I’m planning on making a few changes in that room, and possibly moving my little Hygge spot. I’ll be sure to try and capture photos of the transformation in a future blog post.

What are you most looking forward to this Autumn ?


Royal Albert Canterbury with a bit of Foley Wileman China

This week I stumbled across this lovely trio by Royal Albert. At $2.99, I didn’t think. I just gently hurled it into my cart.   With links to the British Royal family in the early 1900s, and  it’s distinctive cup shapes, country floral motifs and rich colours, to own a piece of Royal Albert is to have a piece of history in your hands. And I had to have it in my hands.

Thrift Store find $2.99

Royal Albert is probably best known for its Old Country Rose pattern by Harold Holdcroft ,  one of the most famous of all its designers. I have a cup and saucer from this pattern for display rather than every day use.

Old Country Roses advert
Royal Albert Old Country Roses

What I didn’t realise until I got home, is that this was a mismatched set ! Imagine my surprise when I looked on the cup and saucer. Its backstamp read Foley China EBCo Made in England. I had been duped. The set had been taped together and I had no reason to believe that they weren’t all Royal Albert as the patterns on cup, saucer and side plate did really seem to match.

Foley China began as far back as the 1872 by the Wileman family at Foley pottery in Fenton Staffordshire England. They family also later on started the Shelley factory to produce fine bone china. It appears there is a complicated history with several ownerships throughout the years including Coalport and Royal Doulton group.

Foley China Works (c) Staffordshire Past Track

So this trio has an interesting provenance. The plate dates from 1935 -1940 based on its backstamp. The cup and saucer from a similar period.

Royal Albert Canterbury backstamp 1935 -1940
1935  Royal Albert backstamp
Foley China EBCo 1930's teacup backstamp
Foley China EBCo 1930’s backstamp

But, alas, do not despair. I really think that Royal Albert Canterbury and Foley work well together.  With it’s lovely avon cup shape and D shaped handle details, this pairing has a more unisex design.  While it does have floral sprays , I think it’s one that can be appreciated by someone who perhaps isn’t so inclined to love florals.

Today is the first day of Autumn here in the Northern Hemisphere. It’s a wonderful time of year. The children are back at school and hopefully settling into their new year. The evenings begin to get more cosy, as the temperatures start to cool. My tea consumption increases dramatically.

Mismatched Trio – Royal Albert Canterbury Foley cup and saucer

So perfect time for this Royal Albert Canterbury plate and EB Foley china teacup and saucer, to join my collection. I grateful to its previous owners for putting such a fantastic pair together.



AUGUST ….Yet another wonderfully busy month. So busy that I forgot to post my favourite teacups.  As I’m sitting here sipping the most delicious cup of Yorkshire Tea… I wonder if I’ve just been having too much fun hunting for new teacups while in London ! Can you blame a girl… ?!

The British Summer weather has been on the up. Lots of sunshine ! (I wish you could see the huge smile on my face ). I have been frequenting my local car boot Sunday sale in Pottersbury. I always find such fun things there. It holds a special place in my heart as it’s where I found most of my teacups for my wedding a few years ago.

So yet another wonderfully busy month. But do not despair, here  are My #teacuptuesday favourites for the month of August 2017.

Do you have a favourite ?

Tea. Always.

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Happy Teacup Tuesday lovelies! I finally got my hands on a new product called @criobru! I heard great things about this cocoa bean brew from Tom Taylor @thosgreentaylor and have been dying to try it out. ••••••••••••••••••••••••••• I can't buy it around here so I made a note to purchase some Crio Bru in Utah and then I was so busy I forgot, gah! They're running a free shipping promo right now so I figured I'd just order some, not a big deal. Fast forward to the drive back to Iowa. We stopped in Aurora, Nebraska to watch the total solar eclipse. As we were shopping for breakfast items in their tiny grocery store-seriously, it was grocery, craft, and hardware rolled into one haha. I noticed out of the corner of my eye some Crio Bru Kcups in the clearance section. Only problem was I don't have a Kcup machine and I wasn't going to buy one. But then I had a thought, if they were selling Kcups, maybe they also sold packages of it! Walked on over to the coffee section and woohoo- @criobru!!! ••••••••••••••••••••••••• Long story short, picked up two packages of this exciting cocoa bean drink in a random middle of nowhere town Nebraska! Also, this isn't an ad but if @criobru wants to send a couple extra packages to try, I certainly wouldn't be opposed haha! 😁If you like dark chocolate then you'll enjoy @criobru!

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It’s been a while since I’ve posted a favourite for #TeacupTuesday.

So where have I been and what have I been up to ?

Well, as I write this blog post, I am currently enjoying a nice cup of Chamomile tea in the Roman city of Bath, Somerset in England. It’s my annual trip and I’m so blessed to be able to have a working holiday in one of my favourite cities. Meeting up with friends around the country, while finding new things for the shop.

This trip has been a bit more relaxed and and I’m super excited about an upcoming family break to Germany. Who knows what I will find there. But for now, I bring you this fab image from Thelen Image Gallery – Still life, Food And Nature Photographer, coffee lover, & REP –   that summarises my current situation. Curled up with a magazine, drinking a nice cup of tea. All while enjoying the gentle tapping of rain drops against the window pane. It’s another rainy day, but sometimes you just have to take what comes and embrace it. Rarely do I have time for a magazine, so I’m just going to enjoy it.

I hope you have a wonderful day !



#TeacupTuesday Favourite 9 May, 2017

This week my favourite image just totally incapsulated my mood over the last few days.

It was my mum’s birthday recently, and I still find it hard that she is no longer with us. I received a kind and totally unexpected piece of happy mail from a friend, whom I met through my love of stationery. She sent me a box of tea and chocolates from her home town of Seattle. When it arrived, it quickly changed my mood and I was all smiles.

I’m going to follow Jane Morley’s advice and find a little quiet corner. Tea, definitely soothes my soul.

#TeacupTuesday Favourite 1 May, 2017

EMERALD GREEN… that’s what stopped me in my tracks when I was perusing my feed for my #TeacupTuesday favourite this week. This Wileman trio is gorgeous ! There are just too many details. From the stunning fluted detail on each piece to the ornate design, and what appears to be a lady driving tea on the teacup. It’s dainty, it’s cute and the perfect for month of May.

So, my favourite this week is from Yuka over at 📷: @desirable_antiques. By now you may be wondering, where can I find Wileman china. Well… You can find more Wileman beauties on Etsy here.  (You’re welcome).

Happy teacup Tuesday ! I love the bright and vibrant green colour like emerald 💚the birthstone of May Adorable treasure 🇬🇧✨ * わがショップに新しくお迎えしたワイルマンのグリーンカメオです。 わたしにとってもカメオはスペシャルなお品です。 #イギリス #アンティーク #アンティーク食器 #ティーカップ #エメラルドグリーン #ワイルマン #ティータイム #モーニングティー #アフタヌーンティー #5月 #誕生石 #ヴィクトリアン #陶磁器 #テーブルウエア #イギリスアンティーク #骨董 #紅茶 #アンティークのある暮らし #紅茶のある暮らし #teacuptuesday #wileman #emeraldgreen #teacuplover #tea #teatime #teacup #antique #tealover #green

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Etsy Shop Feature Series: WayBackWax

The Shop Feature Series  is a blog segment where we get to chat with artistes and find out about their inspiration and story. My special guests today are Justine & Alexis, whose  work I found while browsing Instagram.  These ladies make gorgeous soy candles in interesting vintage wares. 

Here’s what the creators had to say when I caught up with them. Getting to know the artiste, isn’t that what Etsy is about?

How did you get started?

Wayback Wax is two friends from Upstate NY. One vintage lover (Justine) and one crafty mom (Alexis). We started in March 2016 while we were thinking of how to do something fun and creative together, that could also bring in some cash!

We scour estate sales and thrift shops to find unique and fun vintage vessels for our hand poured candles. Every candle is handmade in Stillwater, NY in small batches by us. We use eco-friendly soy wax that is natural and safe so that once you have finished your candle you have a cool piece of vintage to add to your collection.

How would you describe your pieces?

Our handmade OOAK pieces are for those who love natural, soy wax candles and enjoy showing off their vintage collections. They are an eco-friendly product with style, and make a wonderful personalized gift or great addition to a collection.

Is there is favourite piece in your current collection? 

The collection is always evolving as we find new pieces. Currently my favorite is this 70’s stoneware mug that’s filled with a Country Lemonade scent. It appeals to my love of all things hippie and the scent is just cheery and summery!

Vintage 70’s Stoneware Mug Soy Wax Candle Handmade $20 from Wayback Wax

Any alternative ways for reusing your pieces ?  

Once the candles burn down, the soy wax is soooo much softer than other waxes. Just some warm soapy water and the vessel is clean and safe for drinking, eating or any other use.

What can we expect from Way back Wax in the future ?  

We are playing with the idea of offering collections for wedding and/or party favors. Curated collections of the perfect mix & match for the occasion. For example, vintage teacups in coordinating colors & scents for bridesmaids gifts or candles for Pyrex Parties!

Stuck on a desert island, what are your 3 must haves?

Swimsuit, suntan lotion and Spotify!

Just for fun are you are tea or coffee drinker? 

Coffee drinker but my favorite drink is probably a nice cold beer!

A well made Soy candle
Mom You’re The Best ! Super cute!
This Wayback Wax candle in a vintage mug is perfect for Mother's Day!
This Wayback Wax candle in a vintage mug is perfect for Mother’s Day!


My personal favourite in the shop is this mug which is perfect for Mother’s Day. This is sure to be one of a kind- OOAK gift. That’s thing about Etsy… you’re sure to find one off pieces that have the ability to translate the right mood, tone and sentiment.  This is a great example!

I love the creativity in this shop and I’m looking forward to seeing more of your candles ladies! Check out Justine and Alexis on Etsy and be sure to follow them on social media for special offers.



#TeacupTuesday Favourite 25 April, 2017

Each week I’m filled with excitement to see what beautiful teacups will turn up on #teacuptuesday feed. New folks are always joining in and I love to find other enthusiasts to follow. As a rule, I always try to have my first morning cup of tea, in a vintage teacup.

My favourite this week is from Yvette over at 📷: @shelovesblooms . Such a gorgeous display around a pretty teacup! The premium rose and black tea sounds delicious too and I shall be giving that a try!

Do you have any tea recommendations that I should try ?