Field Sports Pattern

Large dish (platter), Field Sports pattern, Fox Hunting 1846
Field Sports pattern was first introduced in about 1846. At this time the Spode company was known as Copeland & Garrett often incorporating the words 'late Spode' (meaning formerly Spode) in the backstamps. The pattern continued to be made when the name of the company changed again to Copeland in 1847 under the sole ownership of William Taylor Copeland.

The pattern, which was printed from a hand engraved copper plate, featured a border of wild flowers with varying centres which were engraved for different sizes and shaped pieces. The border is pretty with convolvulus, wild roses, forget-me-not and other English wild flowers.
Plate, Epsom Racecourse, Field Sports border 1847
The subjects in the centre were of field sport scenes: hunting on foot and with hounds as well as with horses. One particularly fine scene depicts the stand at Epsom racecourse of 1847Pieces with this design often have a backstamp which includes a registered mark or number. The registered number is 37254 and this pattern was registered with the British Patent Office on 14th September 1846.

As well as tableware in this pattern, toilet ware was also made featuring the design on ewers and basins, chamber pots, soap dishes, sponge bowls etc.

Field Sports pattern is usually seen as a plain print (i.e. no extra added colour or gilding) in green or black. But following its success in the 19th century the pattern continued to be produced in a variety of colours into the 20th century. Its date of withdrawal from sale is unrecorded.
Plate, multi-coloured (border detail), pattern number 2/4333) c1896
Plate backstamps pattern number 2/4333 c1896

A late 19th century version is multi-coloured and has pattern number 2/4333 first recorded in about 1896. It was printed in brown and then handcoloured. Another version in the 1920s shows a variation of the pattern with a combination of a rich orange border and a black centre. Full research in the pattern books in the Spode archive has not yet been carried out to discover the many versions of this pattern. 

The Field Sports border was used with other unconnected centres over the years into the late 1900s.

Orange and black, c1920s
Filigree was first introduced in about 1823. Initially a plain, blue printed pattern it later appeared in various versions.

It was one of Spode's most success early floral designs. Other manufactures are known to have produced this pattern too

One of the images here is of a copper plate engraved to produce the prints for a tray in this pattern. Tissue paper specially developed and manufactured for the pottery industry was used to transfer the image from the copper to the pot - hence the term transfer printing or, in the US, transferware.

For more on transfer printing visit Spode Exhibition Online and also my blog post Spode and Printing...

Hand engraved copper plate for a tray in Filigree pattern c1823
Plate, earthenware, printed in blue, showing centre detail c1823
Filigree pattern: copper plate for a tray laid out for engraving with tools; & a Dutch shape jug, c1823
On smaller pieces the baskets of flowers from the border were used as centres and for sprays. The pattern was used on a wide range of wares and appeared as both a plain print and with added handpainted colours over the print. It is also known on toilet ware, such as ewers and basins, chamber pots, sponge dishes and soapboxes... The pattern continued to be made throughout the 19th and 20th centuries in different colours and on different shapes of ware.

Like many of Spode's printed designs the border of Filigree was also used in conjunction with other centres. It was particularly popular with Game services. You can find more about Game and Turkey designs by clicking here.

In the late 1990s the pattern was reintroduced as part of the range by Spode know as The Blue Room Collection.
Catalogue page, Turkey centre with Filigree border, 1965

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Fine Stone
Fine Stone was the name of the Stone China body with a new recipe, or formula, which was introduced in 1960. Spode's original Stone China was introduced in about 1812. The recipe changed in about 1821/2 and was called New Stone. For more and images please see Stone China on the S page.

New Stone backstamp used from about 1920-1960

Fine Stone backstamp used from about 1960-1970

Flemish Green
Flemish Green, leaflet 1958
Flemish Green was introduced in 1949 after World War II (1939-1945).

From 1942 to 1952, during and after World War II, no decorated pottery was allowed to be sold in the UK except seconds and export rejects. The main tableware was 'Utility' and in the case of Spode was made to exactly the same high standard as was expected from a leading manufacturer. With the slight relaxation in restrictions after the war coloured bodies were introduced. Flemish Green was one of these. It was in production until about 1973.

In July 1954, as the North American market for Spode was turning away from the long established patterns, the firm had to obtain business where it could. The plain Flemish Green body had by this time become very popular in Britain and was adapted for the export market with the addition of floral designs by Harold Holdway.

The new designs were Scroll Border with pattern number S2817, Moondrop with pattern number S2818, Montego with pattern number S2819, Mystic with pattern number S2820, Mimosa with pattern number S2822 and Jacinth with pattern number S2850. Moondrop and Jacinth were especially successful. Mimosa was mainly produced for export to Australia and New Zealand where it proved to be extremely popular.

Two-tone tableware was introduced in the late 1950s in a range of combinations one of which was Imperial Ivory earthenware with a border of Flemish Green decorated with floral centres.

The most popular patterns in the two-one body were Olympus with pattern number S2933 in 1955, Petunia with pattern number S3156 in 1956 and Soft Whispers with pattern number O3261 in 1957. Olympus and Petunia were designed by Harold Holdway.

Meadowsweet was introduced in 1958 which was a two-tone earthenware with a Flemish Green rim and back and a yellow body for the centre. Teacups were yellow with green handles on plain green saucers. MeadowGlory was yet another two-tone variation, this time in yellow and white and introduced in 1956 but not often seen. (Also see English Lavender on my E page for another two-tone combination).

More information can be found about the restrictions on production in the pottery industry during World War II in 'Ten Plain Years: the British Pottery Industry 1942-1952', Kathy Niblett, Journal of the Northern Ceramic Society Volume 12 1995.
'Fine English Dinnerware' catalogue 1959
Flower Painting

Go to Spode and Charles Ferdinand Hürten for some of the best flower painting

in the ceramic industry - click HERE>


Click here for Spode and Football.


See Savoy on the S page

In 1955 a range of ornamental wares, especially containers for flowers were produced in a dual tone of Flemish Green (see above) on the outer surface and Imperial Ivory earthenware on the inner.

Some embossed wares were also made in which the ivory clay slip was painted on the embossed design in the mould before casting in green slip. This two-tone ware was called Fortuna. More about Fortuna can be seen on my Golf page. Fortuna was produced until the 1960s.

Casting a Fortuna Jug, 1961
Fortuna leaflet 1958

Frog Pattern
Frog pattern has been produced in various versions from about the 1820s. No-one really knows why it is called Frog pattern and the name may have originated as a factory name - I think if you look at the outside of the pattern the shape is similar to a flattened frog!

Frog Pattern, coverdish
The design was produced on stone china, earthenware and bone china at different times. The version which is most well known is pattern number 3248 from about 1821. Richly decorated in blue, red and gold it is this design which was used at the Coronation of HM King George IV. In the Spode museum's collection there is a plate in this pattern with this inscription: 'As used at the Coronation of His Majesty King George IV 19th July 1821' in blue on the reverse. The piece also has a Copeland & Garrett mark so dates from much later c1833 - a bit of marketing going on perhaps?

For the Coronation there were 300 guests at the banquets held in Westminster Hall and the scene was recorded for posterity in a large painting. Details of the menu survive and whilst the size of the Spode service is not known there were numerous courses and one could imagine at least 2,000 plates in sizes being required. It is recorded that 500 sauce boats were used to serve lobster, butter and mint sauces - these may have been silver, but it gives an idea of the sheer quantity of tableware used for this magnificent occasion. It may be that the publicity of this occasion increased the popularity of the pattern. A photograph in the Spode archive (with collection number SD1440/RC007/236) gives a list of the pieces made but the source for this unknown. The details are: 6,794 dinner plates, 1,406 soup plates and 1,499 dessert plates. So this is more more than has previously been estimated.
Frog with pattern number 4233, Potteries Museum & Art Gallery
Sometimes the border only was used in conjunction with different centre designs or a badge or crest. Some regiments used the border for their ware with their badge in the centre. For example in the 3rd Arms Book in the Spode archive there are two orders recorded. On page 84 Frog pattern is used with the badge of the 76th Regiment and on page 147 with that of the 96th Regiment.

With about 75,000 patterns recorded in the archive, by number not name, the research to find all the versions of the Frog pattern is not complete but those noted to date are:

3137 first recorded c1821 printed in blue, coloured in pale blue, red and gilded
3248 first recorded c1821 similar to 3137 but no pale blue which is replaced by more red
3350 border only first recorded c1822, as 3248 but 'edging color instead of gold'
4233 first recorded c1826, Gadroon shape, printed in blue and coloured over in puce and gilded (see image)
4274 first recorded c1826, Gadroon shape, printed in blue and coloured over in blue and gilded
4275 first recorded c1826, Gadroon shape, printed in blue and coloured in olive green and gilded
4623 first recorded c1830 seems to be the same as 3248 but slightly different shaped plate
4653 first recorded in c1830 as 3248 but on Gadroon shape and the gadrooning is gilded
5411 border only, first recorded c1834, as 3248 but brown instead of gold
7254 first recorded c1845, printed in Royal Saxon blue and coloured in red and green, gilded, Meissen shape
B113 first recorded c1826 printed in blue and coloured in olive green
2/1566 first recorded c1880 'printed in black underglaze and painted in Baltic Blue lustre and opaque orange'
2/1567 first recorded c1880 'as 2/1566 but red in place of blue'
2/4227 first recorded c1896 'printed in blue pencilled in red and gilt'
2/4659 first recorded c1899 'printed in brown pencilled in blue green red and gilt'
2/6322 first recorded c1911 'printed in Zaffres blue coloured in red edged in orange' 
Y653 first recorded c1928, border only in blue and gold with a floral centre

The early pattern can be see illustrated in 'Spode' by L. Whiter (details on booklist) along with a copy of the inscription.