A Message from Ruth at Antiques And Teacups

Welcome to the blog of Antiques And Teacups! Let's share a cup of tea and talk about the things we love...like teacups, antiques, collectibles, visiting England, antiquing and learning about victoriana and quirky gadgets. Fun!

Monday, September 16, 2019

Autumn arrives! Shelley Fruit Center and Computer Ills, Apple-Cinnamon-Walnut Scones

Welcome friends... I have been off the computer A LOT this last month... first with computer problems...still ongoing... and also our annual 2 week break for me as a caregiver for my husband with Parkinson's Disease.

It began August 19th with a Windows update that crashed my computer. To the techs the next day, but didn't get it back until a week later, the day we were to leave on our 2 week cruise which is a break for me from a lot of care issues of being the caregiver for my husband.
We got back, and I have found much is still not right on the computer, and yesterday realized the computer no longer recognizes or will communicate with my camera, so now I have to figure out what to do about that. Sigh...
I had photographed an autumn tea, but... still on the camera and can't get it off!
So... a partial repeat post from 2015.

This week's teacup is a Shelley China Fruit Center tea cup in the Boston shape...

I guess I have fruit on the brain, because we have had THE BEST peaches, nectarines and plums this year...absolutely succulent! And as we have been wandering around the last 2 weeks with family and friends to various places we have brought home a lot of small organic farms, which this area has in abundance.

Doesn't the fruit look luscious? Love it! The teacup was made between 1963 and 1966 when the pottery closed. There were lots of Fruit Center versions made by Shelley in different shapes, colors and fruit. They are all wonderful!

For more info on the Shelley Fruit Center fall teacup at Antiques And Teacups, click on the photos.

I wanted to share some of my favorite fall photos from the September/October 2008 issue of Victoria Magazine, my most favorite subscription.

I have pumpkins on the brain...because I am planning some pumpkin cashew coconut curry from a recipe in Sunset magazine!

Love this because it is so like our Tinker who we lost 3 years ago and still miss!!!

I wanted to share a recipe I have made several times since it's appearance in Tea Time Magazine in Sept-Oct 2012...

Apple-Cinnamon-Walnut Scones
  1. 2 cups self-rising flour*
  2. 3 tablespoons sugar
  3. ¼ cup cold salted butter
  4. 1 cup diced, peeled green apple
  5. ¼ cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  6. ⅓ cup cinnamon baking chips†
  7. ⅔ cup cold heavy whipping cream
  8. 1 large egg
  9. ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  10. 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine flour and sugar, whisking well. Using a pastry blender, cut butter into flour mixture until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add apple, walnuts, and cinnamon chips, stirring to combine. Set aside.
  4. In a small bowl, combine cream, egg, and vanilla extract, whisking well. Add to flour mixture, stirring until mixture comes together and forms a soft dough. (If dough seems dry, add more cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, until uniformly moist.)
  5. Using a levered 3-tablespoon scoop, drop dough onto prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle tops of scones with turbinado sugar.
  6. Bake until light golden brown, approximately 20 minutes.
  1. *For testing purposes, we used White Lily Enriched Bleached Self-Rising Flour, available in grocery stores throughout the Southeastern region of the United States and online at whitelily.com.
  2. †For testing purposes, we used Hershey’s Cinnamon Baking Chips.
  3. When making scones for a crowd, prepare a few batches at a time, but do not bake. Freeze the raw scones on parchment-lined baking sheets, transfer scones to airtight containers, and keep frozen for up to three months. An hour or two before the event, bake frozen scones according to recipe directions until golden brown.

And they are delicious!
Well, I hope I have my computer and camera back working soon!
Will keep you posted!

Monday, August 12, 2019

Afternoon Tea Week so Pot Pourri Of Tea Things And A Birthday!

Still summer here... although a bit of rain yesterday, which we needed.
And in the U.K., not only has Premier League English football (soccer) started but it is Afternoon Tea Week!


And we have a British tea treats stash!
Jaffa Cakes... the orange and chocolate biscuits I blogged about recently...
HobNobs... our favourite EVER British biscuit... dark chocolate on an oat wholemeal biscuit
and Battenburg Cakes... layered and chessboard assembled cakes covered in a marzipan layer.

And my birthday was the last few days... so my husband got me... really us... 6 decorated cupcakes from our local award winning bakery That Takes The Cake.

and, like a dodo... I forgot to take a photograph until we were down to the last 2 today... sigh...

These are... in the package... Lemon Limon, and the one on the plate is Champagne French Vanilla.
We also had my husband's favorite Coconut Cream Supreme, Almond Poppy Seed Cream, and 2 chocolates... one a chocolate mint and one for my Honey a chocolate coconut hazlenut cream.

And for tea, I am just finishing up a Harney and Sons Anniversary Blend tea... a nice robust black tea.

The china is the Green Georgian pattern teacup trio by Allertons, England from the 1930s. It came in other colors too, but we only have green at the moment.

And speaking of Harney and Sons tea, a week or so ago I replenished our stock of tea from Harney's. as we are making iced tea from our favorite green blends, Tropical Green and Green Tea With Coconut. And when the order came, we were gifted with a 50 sachet bag of their Organic English Breakfast, a blend we keep on hand as a staple for us.

Such a nice surprise!

So, lots of lovely tea things this week for Afternoon Tea week... hope there are lots in your week as well!

Monday, August 5, 2019

Just a Tea Time With HobNobs!

Summer is still in control this week... so good thing we got our English tea and goodies orders a week ago, when it was still ordinary Pacific Northwest weather!
Hence, a teatime with one of our treats, because they don't last long around here!

We spend a lot of time in our sunroom... during the winter it has the most light. But occasionally in the summer... as it has the last few days... we are okay until maybe 2pm, then have to close the door into the rest of the house and open the windows to regulate the temperature, and stay out until the evening when the shade from the trees again blocks the direct sun. It got to 90 something yesterday...

As or British treat biscuits... or cookies to Yanks... have chocolate cream inside, they would have melted in the sunroom yesterday afternoon!
HobNobs by McVitie's are probably our favorite biscuit... normally the "nobbly, oatey" biscuit with a layer of plain , ie, dark chocolate on the top. But I saw these, and they are new to us.

And although about 1/2 the side of regular HobNobs, they are the same nobbly, oatey goodness with the chocolate as a cream layer inside. Very tasty!
I used a Shelley spare Melody Chintz saucer. After 40 years of dealing in Shelley china, I have accumulated quite a few orphan cups and saucers without partners. I use the spare saucers for all sorts of things!

Besides the British food order, I also had an order from Harney and Sons, and they had a special on a tin of this tea which I hadn't had for awhile...
from their Historic Royal Palaces collection, their Royal English Breakfast.
Quite nice and brisk, but I prefer a bit more Darjeeling lightness and taste depth. My husband likes it though.

And a pretty teacup too! This is in a pale blue pattern with Chrysanthemums called Romance, pattern number 1919. 
I love the elegant shape.

 The pretty teacup was made by Royal Standard, England in the 1950s. Royal Standard was a trademark of Chapman's, Longton Staffordshire in 1916... and was a division of Thomas C. Wild which gave us Royal Albert.

Royal Standard was closed in 1966... during that horrible time when most of the famous potteries were bought up by conglomerates or closed.
Their workmanship was extremely good, and I still look upon them as one of my favorite potteries.

Have a lovely week, and lots of tea! Probably iced around here as well as hot... off to make some Harney's Tropical Green as iced tea!

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Summer Peaches Tea, Angela Thirkell, Tender Peach Scones

What a glorious summer week it has been! Sunny and warm! 
And lots of organic fresh fruit in the local farm shops... doin' the happy dance!
Had hoped to post this Sunday, but we had a ...joy, joy... water heater leak, so things have been a bit distracted. 

I was moving the position of  a print I love, and thought I would share it with you. 
And so combined with a couple of newly found teacups and the Tender Peach Scones I made from a new recipe to use up a couple of getting-very-ripe peaches...

The print is one I bought from the artist, Barbara Fox, matted print of a watercolor by living listed artist Barbara Fox that was purchased from the Loey're Gallery, Sheridan Oregon during the artist's exhibition at the Angels Camp, CA., The Best of Calaveras County Annual Exhibition in 1999.

The print is titled San Francisco, '98, and is the glass Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate Park, and was done as a fundraiser for restoration after the 1998 Loma Prieta earthquake.
Having grown up a few miles away in what is now known as Silicon Valley, and having spent many happy hours growing up visiting with my nurseryman uncle,  I couldn't pass it up.

I am always on the look out for teacups, and found a few lovely ones.
This is a gorgeous peachy pink floral chintz teacup by Aynsley, England is what is known as a corset shape.

The mark dates it to the early 1950-1960s, and includes a pattern number, which isn't always the case. Aynsley is now owned by Belleek since 1997.

The other teacup is a gorgeous one from Paragon, England with French blue and white, gold overlay and fruit centers...including peaches!

I think it is gorgeous!

The Royal Warrant on this Paragon teacup is for Queen Elizabeth II. The mark dates to the early part of her reign, which began in 1953. The mark changed a few years later.

I used a chose a chrome basket for my sugar cubes... and an antique pair of English Regency or Georgian period hallmarked sterling silver sugar tongs in the fiddle pattern.

The sugar tongs or nips are hallmarked for London, England 1835 and the maker ABS for Adey Bellamy Savory and measure 5.75 inches long.
They have the script monogram of P T on the bow. Could Jane Austen have used them????

I love to read. And over the years have found authors I have really enjoyed, and collected their books. The book I was currently reading when I did this tea is The Duke's Daighter by Angela Thirkell. Although the cover is from a ptr-Rapaelite Victorian painter, the story is placed in world war 2 time England and is charming.

The pre Raphaelite cover is apropos, as Anela Thirkell's mother was the daughter of the painter Edward Burne-Jones, and her mother is probably the model for his painting on the cover.
If you enjoy Miss Read, English country life, a bit of romance and gently humor, the books are a delight.
And for a tea treat... Tender Peach Scones from King Arthur Flour....


  • 2 cups (241g) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 to 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg,* to taste
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3/8 cup (6 tablespoons, 85g) cold butter, cut into pieces
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup (74g) full-fat or low-fat (not nonfat) vanilla yogurt or sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup (142g) diced peach, peeled or not; fresh, frozen/thawed, or canned
  • coarse white sparkling sugar, optional; for sprinkling on top
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
*Don't like nutmeg? Substitute ground cinnamon, or simply leave out the spice altogether.


  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly grease a baking sheet, or line it with parchment.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, sugar, nutmeg, and baking powder.
  3. Work in the butter, using your fingers, a fork, or a pastry blender.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, yogurt or sour cream, and the extracts.
  5. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.
  6. Add the peaches, stirring just until everything is combined. This is a wet, sticky dough.
  7. Drop the dough by the 1/4-cupful onto the prepared pan; a muffin scoopworks well here.
  8. Sprinkle the scones with coarse sugar, if desired.
  9. Bake the scones for 20 to 25 minutes, until they're a light golden brown. Remove them from the oven, and let them cool on the pan for a few minutes before transferring to a rack to cool completely.
  10. Serve warm, or at room temperature. Store at room temperature, well-wrapped, for several days; freeze for longer storage.

  11. They were lovely and moist, more cake-like than many scones, and reminded me more of scones we have had in Germany rather than England, but lovely indeed, and tasting of summer!
  12. Thanks for joining me, and have a lovely week!

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Golden Summer Tea Tray, Chocolate and Orange Traditional Jaffa Cakes

Summer is in full swing, we survived the Lavender Fair... other than a rental in the neighborhood partying hearty on Saturday night until 4 am!  
We really dragged it on Sunday!
Getting too old for that! Lol!

Put together a summer golden tea tray a couple of days ago... the temperature is lovely and warm and the sun is bright...

And I recently found some of a favorite... and definitely blingy... Golden Age pattern pieces from Royal Winton Grimwades, England from the 1950-1960s.

The pattern is certainly not shy! A high gloss gold luster. They have always been popular, and don't hang around long. And it is difficult to find the teapot. 

This is a nice large one.

Although they are better known for their chintz patterns, Royal Winton did many different lines since going into business in 1885.
Golden Age was in their Luster Ware line, joining their other popular and distinctive patterns in the 1950s.

The pieces were popular as they went with most other patterns and were very popular for weddings, anniversaries and formal tea parties.

The pattern also included teacups and demitasse cups and saucers...

And even some home decor items....

I found this Daisies theme teacup recently too, and it just seems like a summer joy! Love the fancy gold overlay pattern!

This summery teacup was made by Windsor, England... which was a trade mark used by the Co-operative Wholesale Society, Ltd. in Longton, or CWS, which operated from 1911-1971. The 2 best known trade names of the group are Clarence and Windsor.
The Windsor pattery was acquired by Hammersley in 1971 and Windsor was then phased out as a trademark.

Definitely tasting of summer, I found a packet of my favorite Jaffa Cakes... chocolate orange heaven for a teatime treat...

And also found a funny Jaffa Cake graphic...

Jaffa Cakes are a British tradition. The name derives from oranges brought back to England from Jaffa, which is now Tel Aviv, Israel, famous for it's citrus.
Here is a recipe I found for my favorite Jaffa Cakes... a wonderful British confection of a sponge layer, orange jelly layer and dark chocolate. 
Totally addictive! 
There are several different makers, but we love McVitties best...although most are quite good.
You can find them at British stores or stores with British food sections, or, use this recipe and make them yourself!

From the blog The Spruce Eats:

Have a wonderful weekend, and a lovely cup of tea with a friend... or a Jaffa Cake!


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