Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Royal Doulton Blue Children pottery is rare and sought after

Blue Children? No, not some new kind of genetically modified offspring but a collectable that I had seen before but never paid much attention to or even heard it termed as such.

See a slideshow of Blue Children patterns here.

Fact is, not a lot is known about this particularly distinctive brand of Royal Doulton pottery, but faced with a collection of five pieces of the stuff ranged attractively prior to their auction, it's hard to ignore.

So, ever keen to expand my knowledge, I spoke to the owner who had decided to start to thin out his collection in an upcoming sale.

He told me the five pieces represented the less important 25 per cent of what he owned.

If anyone could tell me about Blue Children, it was him.

But he couldn't, but he did hand me a copy of Doulton expert Louise Irvine's book on the pottery manufacturer's so-called "Series Ware" (published by Richard Dennis, 1986).

Oddly listed under "Games and Pastimes", Page 51 gives a list of 24 scenes or titles of Blue Children patterns, the names of which are self-explanatory: Two girls sheltering under umbrella; Two girls draping daisy chains round a dog's neck; Girl with doll talking to a frog and so on.

Interestingly, it seemed like the collector had discovered another, previously not listed, pattern: "Girl in landscape with plate and teaset". But the handwritten addition was followed by a question mark, so the jury is still out on that one.

But that explains why his was attracted to it enough to amass such a huge collection. He has two daughters, now grown up and with children of their own, and that's why. Plus his wife really likes it.

Why was he selling? No doubt to buy more, better examples.

According to Louise Irvine, the Blue Children series was introduced By Royal Doulton in the 1890s and discontinued by 1930.

The relatively short production run means supplies are limited, which is always an ingredient of a sought-after collectable.

The variety of shapes to which the patterns were applied is large, is another plus.

They include plates for display racks; oval and round wall plaques; the Gower umbrella stand; Aubrey toilet set; Sheriton toilet set; Carlton fern pot; Bamboo flower pot; jugs in the Breda, Chatsworth; Arno and Corinth shapes; Ball teapot; jardiniere and pedestal and various vases.

Additionaly, McVitie and Price adopted the pattern for a biscuit jar advertising their product, as did Royal Doulton for another biscuit jar, the Regent shape, both of which must have been popular with children, at least judging by my own two who seem addicted to chocolate digestives.

Louise Irvine goes on to add that although mostly printed, the scenes had additional background detail painted by hand.

Occasionally the artists responsible signed their work although this practice seems to have ceased by 1902.

Recorded signatures are J. Boulton, M. Brown, P. Curnock, C. Jackson, F. Jones, Kelsall, A. E, Simpson and "Yomans" (sic).

And there you have it. That seems to be the extent of knowledge about Blue Children series ware, although if any reader knows more, both my new collector friend and I would love to hear it.

The picture shows a jardinière decorated with three children watching Tinkerbell. It's worth £150-200

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Anonymous BARRIE MELLINGS said...

i have a simiar jardinaire with blue lady and child d epiced in a blue this the same series and does it have a similar value.i hope you can help with my query and thank you for your time

9 February 2009 at 07:04  
Anonymous Christopher Proudlove said...

Thank you for your email, it's always a pleasure to hear from a reader. In simple terms, yes, your piece would have a smiliar value at auction. However, the more complicated answer is that it depends on size and condition. If you'll let me have that informationa and an image of it and the mark on the base, I'll see what I can do.
Christopher Proudlove

9 February 2009 at 07:17  
Anonymous Beth-lurline said...

hi my mum has this nice vase royal doulton vase and we can't find any info about this peace we were wounder what year it was made and the rough value if possible it says
"royal doulton flambe"
we thing the number is"7163" or "7/63"

13 March 2009 at 19:36  
Anonymous Cheryl Stevens said...

I have 2 round tiles with the doulton markings on the back. I bought them framed about 15 years ago. I didn't like the frame so have now removed them only to find the doulton stamp. Mine are dark blue edging the picture of 2 samll girls they appear to be in the woods playing with a doll. the other is a boy and girl looking into a hollow in a tree. I can send pictures if you would like as I am very interested in them. They appear to have hidden signatures.
Cheryl Stevens
Sydney Australia

31 October 2011 at 20:34  
Anonymous Willis Shay said...

I have two "Blue Children" pieces: a 6" vase and a 18" charger with identical mother and child figures but difference snow scenes. Both in perfect condition.
Willis Shay
Hilton Head Island SC-USA 29926

29 April 2012 at 18:21  
Anonymous Tam storrs said...

I have a large square ornate heavy plaster gold guilt frame with the girls sheltering under umbrella within. The back is marked in fancy print on a label,"doulton furnace road burslam stoke on trent". It is beautiful flow blue transfer. I would love to know more about the item. Thank zyou

30 June 2012 at 16:49  
Anonymous Christopher Proudlove said...

Tam, send me an image and I'll see what I can find.

2 July 2012 at 10:30  
Anonymous Tam storrs said...

Thank you so much Christopher, i sent pics to your email. I have never seen a plaque framed so beautifully, feel free to post pics of it, if it is something you think is worthy.

3 July 2012 at 05:05  
Anonymous Anne said...

I have a Doulton blue children seriesware plate showing a girl on a bridge in the snow. Can you tell me anything about it and its likely value?

27 July 2012 at 08:42  
Anonymous jenkins said...

I have a blue children straight vase gold rim it was my great uncle's never seen another one two children sitting under a tree

11 June 2016 at 13:15  
Anonymous Kathie johnston said...

I have a royal dulton girl blue vase i would like to know what it is worth?

10 November 2016 at 02:16  

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