JEANNE ILLENYE transferware spode blue italian white american goldfinches birds fruit classical oil painting

capturing nature's transient beauty
American Goldfinches in Cracked Spode Bowl
16x20 inches / oil on canvas
     If you're a regular visitor to my blog and website, you've no doubt seen a good amount of blue & white porcelain and Spode Blue Italian transferware.  It has been the single most popular subject requested by clients, and I love painting it, particularly since it's my everyday set...well, except in Winter when I switch to another Spode pattern in one of their Victorian Christmas collections...and my brown transferware, and various mulberry transferware patterns, and two patterns of the Autumnal Game Series.  I digress, as my purpose for reposting this painting which I'd completed and sold many years ago, is to chat a little about Spode in general and introduce you to two fabulous sites. 
     Recently, I was introduced online to Pam Woolliscroft who began collecting at an early age and confesses that she'd even purchase cracked or chipped pieces that were priced more appropriately for a teenager to begin collecting...a great idea.  Of course I agree with this concept as a thing of beauty is not destroyed by what I've always referred to as the "kisses of time".   (You've seen how often I even paint cracks in my bowls for interest.)  Pam's early interest in Spode guided her toward a career as curator of the Spode Museum Trust as well as authoring a marvelous new blog which has been met with an overwhelming response,  Spode History:  Snippets of history relevant to the Spode pottery manufactory in Stoke-upon-Trent.  It's a tremendously informative site with wonderful images and links.  Additionally, Pam has begun Spode A-Z featuring a history of Spode patterns, no doubt a huge undertaking but one that will be quite enjoyable to watch grow.
     Another fellow Spode enthusiast whom I also met online is David Hoexter, web administrator of the Transferware Collectors Club which shares a passion for antique British transferware from 1760 to 1900.  It's a truly vast site in which one could spend days at a time browsing the endless array of beautiful transferware, and even buy or sell to enhance your own collections.  Another wonderful site which is a joint effort by the TCC and others to create an online Spode Exhibition.
     For those of us who are collectors, it's always delightful to make new acquaintances who share our appreciation of history and these beautiful wares, so I invite you to pop over and visit these wonderful sites and enjoy the tour!

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