When I first started collecting vintage china, I was very focused on finding matching pieces or complete sets. But that has since changed–I have begun collecting pairs of cobalt tea cups/saucers and plates of different patterns and have had fun mixing and matching them. Now I appreciate this collection even more!
I picked up my first cobalt blue pieces ten years ago on a tour of The Breakers. I was drawn to the reproduction Vanderbilt Service on display. This elegant set features the Biltmore Vanderbilt pattern from Andrea by Sadek. The pattern is adapted from a sevres tea service circa 1888 now on display in the Oak Sitting Room in the Biltmore House in Asheville, North Carolina, the home of George Vanderbilt. So I left the mansion tour with a pair of tea cups and one plate. Years later, my Mom found this cobalt blue/floral Limoges rectangular plate that coordinates with the Vanderbilt reproduction pieces beautifully (thanks Mom!)
A few months ago, while browsing through Summit Antiques Center, I spotted another cobalt blue plate and pair of tea cups/saucers. The plate is marked “Coalport Made in England” and features deep cobalt blues with raised golden gild work and pretty floral bouquets (manufacture of Coalport was transfered to Staffordshire in 1926). The vintage footed teacup and saucer set is marked “Tuscan Made in England”. Tuscan produced fine china between 1898-1970 at the Tuscan Works, Longton, England (later acquired by the Wedgwood group in the early 1970s). The pattern name is unknown, but the stock number and backstamp date this set from the 1940s. The footed teacup is lightly scalloped and has gold metallic trim around the bowl, both sides of the handle and the foot and base. The matching bone china saucer also has gold metallic trim along the scalloped edge.
I found this Limoges vase a few years back to complement the cobalt blue collection.