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August 20, 2015

Applied Art, Remarkable Beauty

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Coalport China Ming Rose is scallop-shaped, rimmed fine bone china with a lavishly rendered floral design at the center, outlined by a geometric border, with scattered floral designs on the rim, and a geometric floral design trimmed with gold on the outside edge. The English company Coalport, located in Shropshire, was founded by John Rose, who at the very beginning of the 19th century was involved with different partners, and manufactured primarily hard-paste porcelain wares, sometimes supplying them as blanks for final decoration in London. Around 1814, Rose apparently began working mostly in bone china. Many patterns produced by the company in the 19th century show the influence of Rococo art, and like Ming Rose, are truly remarkable in their beauty.

With a convex bowl and gold trim, Lenox Crystal Monroe (Gold Trim) features a flower petal design connecting the bowl to the twist design of the stem, and a round foot. The clean design of this crystal beautifully complements the rich colors and gold trim of Coalport China's Ming Rose and the elegance of Gorham's Buttercup sterling. Founded in 1889 by Walter Scott Lenox in Trenton, NJ, the "Staffordshire of America" in its time, the Lenox Ceramic Pottery Company produced art-quality pieces. By 1897 examples of Lenox's work were displayed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. In 1918 President and Mrs. Woodrow Wilson commissioned a set of Lenox for the White House, making it the first American china to grace a president's table. Lenox introduced its line of hand-blown crystal in 1966.

Making its debut during the reign of Queen Victoria, Buttercup sterling silver by Gorham is an exquisite example of the Greco-Roman applied art popular during the period. It features a scalloped shape, with an intricate design of buttercups, scrolls, and leaves, and a spray of buttercups at the bowl of the utensil. Produced from 1899 to around 1950, Gorham Buttercup includes a large selection of sterling silver place setting and serving pieces. The pattern is also available in magnificent hollowware, including tea sets. Afternoon tea, like the Buttercup pattern, was a staple of Victorian England - made popular by Anna Maria Stanhope, the Seventh Duchess of Bedford.

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