THE OFF SEASON: London loot

augustus_01

It all started with a French on French Iron Chef Japan [the original] battle against Chef Sakai.  The challenge was 2 fold; the secret ingredient was guinea fowl and all dishes were to be plated on, Britain’s finest + the Queen’s favourite, Wedgwood China.

In traditional Iron Chef procession, Chairman Kaga banged the gong + the chefs raced to load up on guinea fowl + the panel of judges was introduced.  The camera then panned to the Wedgwood display in the centre of Kitchen Stadium.  And there I saw it amongst the other beautiful pieces, at the tender age of maybe 12, a matte finished collection of pastel coloured plate-ware with the most spectacular cameo-like raised white details; Jasperware Wedgwood.  In awe, and before the guinea fowl even made it to the the judging table, I knew that one day I’d have my very own set of Jasperware.  Since this Iron Chef epiphany, I’ve yet to forget that moment.  Though I may not have been too vocal about it in my adult life, that China has forever lived in the back of my mind.

F A S T  F O R W A R D  +  slight  R E W I N D

london_antiques

My pre teen aspirations came [somewhat] true while on our trip to London.  When travelling, characteristically, my souvenirs materialize in the form of shoes. On this past trip, the only person who left the UK with a new pair of shoes was Mike.

While seeking solace after a failed afternoon shopping attempt, Mike and I turned into a little courtyard near Oxford Circle hosting what appeared to be a church bazaar.  In a stall toward the back was a woman with a table filled with the most amazing antique pieces including a selection of Jasperware.  I squealed at the sight and began frantically telling Mike about my 12 year old Iron Chef Wedgwood moment.   I agonized over which of her pieces would be coming back with me to Toronto.   As I couldn’t decide, I had to walk away and sleep on it only to find that when I returned the next day, the piece I had my eye on was sold.  Eventually I decided on 2 delicate budding vases.

wedgewood_glasgow

The next day, while exploring Shoreditch, I came across another Wedgwood piece that I had to have;  a little heart shaped trinket box.  With it, I also picked up a beautifully detailed antique gold Victorian mirror.  Shoe-venirs: 0 – Antiques: 4!

cat_01

Fearful that they may crack, as soon as we got back to Melody + Billy’s Glasgow flat, I immediately perched each piece on a shelf in our room for display.  Our room was filled with so much natural light during the day that I couldn’t help but snap some pics of both my antique finds and the cats who kept them company.  I enjoyed waking up to my new treasures each morning and I’m certain that so too did Augustus + Octavia [M + B’s cats].

antiques_05antiques_02antiques_03antiques_04cat_03

Though we’ve been back now for over a month, this weekend, I finally got to cleaning off both vases and setting them up in our living room.

antiques_06 antiques_07 antiques_08

In case you too had childhood dreams of Wedgwood, here are a few tips I came across while antique-ing:

.less pieces of the black Jasperware were produced and therefore, are not as easy to come by compared to colours like blue or green | so when you see a piece think twice before you pass it up!
.when cleaning Jasperware use a soft cloth with warm water and gentle liquid soap | dry each piece immediately after rinsing
.be sure to always check each piece for the Wedgwood stamp to ensure that it is authentic | WEDGWOOD no “E”

wedgewood_01
cat_02

This marks my foray into the world of Jasperware; the first of [hopefully] many pieces to come.

madelaine

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s