Spode Chinese Rose Pottery
Spode Chinese Rose pottery is a popular pattern from the famed English pottery brand Spode.
Brief history and description
The company itself was founded in 1770 by Josiah Spode, and the Chinese Rose pattern became one of the company’s most popular designs in the 20th century. The design is inspired by designs found on 18th century Chinese porcelain, combined with an older Spode pattern.
Spode began his career working for English potter Thomas Whieldon, before leaving to establish his own company in his early 20s. He is frequently regarded as having developed bone china, which whether true or not, is indicative of the esteem in which the company itself is held historically. His son eventually took over production.
Spode suffered badly from the worldwide recession in 2008, and nearly suffered bankruptcy as a result. The company eventually had to be sold, though they continue to use the Spode name. Whilst the company is now owned by pottery company Portmeirion Group, Spode still operates from its factory in Stoke-On-Trent and continues to produce extremely popular and distinctive pieces.
Millions of pieces of Chinese Rose pottery have been made to date, and the colourful pattern has several variations, each of them numbered in a series of Spode pattern books, which are currently held in the Stoke-On-Trent city archives.
Spode ceased production of the pattern in 2007, sparking an outcry amongst collectors, as well as retailers, as it was still a very saleable pattern, which many consider as combining both a nostalgic flair with modern tastes and aesthetics. The pattern was particularly popular throughout the United States.
Guide for collectors
Spode Chinese Rose pottery frequently appears at both specialist and mainstream auctioneers, as well as being widely available in antique shops.
Items of Spode Chinese Rose pottery are also available at online auctioneers such as eBay, though prospective collectors are advised to accurately ascertain the authenticity of items they buy online.
As with many collectables, the older the object the more coveted it is likely to be amongst collectors and therefore the higher the price any prospective collector can expect to pay.
So influential and historically relevant is Spode that it also has its own online interactive exhibit, which was launched in 2010.
A comprehensive history of Spode is also available through many online sources, amongst them ThePotteries.org, which outlines in detail the origins of this famous company.
Notable auction sales
The highest price paid for Spode Chinese Rose pottery is $400, for a lot auctioned from the Four Seasons Auction Gallery on 12th November 2006.
In the middling price range, a Spode Chinese Rose dinner service sold from Bonhams on 23rd June 2005 for £210, and at a lower price point, a Spode Chinese Rose patterned tea set sold for $60 from Eastbourne Auction Rooms on 27th July 2007.
The most inexpensive piece of Spode Chinese Rose pottery sold at auction was a tea and coffee pot, which auctioned on 16th August 2005 from A F Bock and Company Limited for $5.
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