The tradition of the hounds! Spode China Herring Hunt/The Hunt is a multi-motif pattern depicting various hunt scenes, as riders dressed in their pinks harry the fox over hill and dale. Scallop-shaped, with a hunting scene depicted at the center of the plate and finished with a band of green along the outside edge, Herring Hunt/The Hunt is an iconic pattern. Spode founder Josiah Spode opened the doors of his porcelain factory in 1780. Under his guidance, the factory introduced two important breakthroughs in the development of English ceramics. Using bone ash, Spode was the first English china maker to achieve higher firing temperatures, resulting in beautifully detailed, longer-lasting china. The company's second important achievement was perfecting "underglaze" decorating. Intricate designs could be applied to china that would last for years without chipping, scratching, or fading. Bone ash composition and underglaze decorating were inexpensive - making fine china available to the English middle class at prices they could afford.
The striking Bedford pattern by renowned designer Ralph Lauren features a bold shape with a convex bowl that curves in at the top, a knobbed stem, and a round foot. This design recalls, in an urbane way, the simple decor of the American past. The pattern sets a beautiful table, and is another example of the design genius of Ralph Lauren. Lauren was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. Although he showed a great deal of interest in design at an early age, Lauren attended the City School of Manhattan to study business. He left college just short of receiving his degree, and in 1968, opened Polo Fashions. The fledgling company began by selling ties, and the ensuing years proved enormously successful for Ralph Lauren as he expanded his business to include a full line of men's and women's clothing as well as home furnishings and accessories. Lauren has achieved tremendous success relying on a formula that combines balance and sophistication with classic patterns and shapes - elements all present in the Bedford crystal pattern.
First produced in 1940, International Silver Joan of Arc is an enchanting sterling flatware pattern with an elegant and flowing scroll design. International Silver started as a combination of America's greatest silver manufacturers. During the American Colonial period, New England was home to many artisans producing high-quality pewter, sterling, and silverplate, primarily in Connecticut. Around 1808, Ashbile Griswold opened a pewter shop in Meriden, Connecticut. Through mergers with regional companies, Griswold's original shop grew to comprise fourteen silver manufacturers, including Holmes and Edwards (Bridgeport), Meriden Britannia (Meriden), and Rogers Brothers (Hartford). In 1898, the International Silver Company became truly "international," establishing offices in England and Canada. Throughout the years, International Silver products have remained immensely popular.