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!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Tuesday Cuppa Tea, Chinese New Year, Red Willow Teacup, Glazed Lemon Ginger Scones

Welcome to Tuesday Cuppa Tea!  This edition celebrated the Chinese New year...

This edition celebrated the Chinese New year, which we celebrated last Thursday. The Chinese New Year is the start of the Chinese calendar and is celebrated for a week...this is the Year of the Goat, Ram or Sheep...depends on which authority is consulted....

So...I chose this English ironstone, red transferware teacup...with a design taken from the Chinese...the famous Willow pattern, made by at least 50 different English potteries that I know of...this is unmarked, but I am pretty sure it is by Ridgway, England who didn't always mark their pieces....

and I've put it in a little Chinese New Year vignette....I didn't have an Asian themed tablecloth, but DID have some cherry blossom fabric. The sign, chopsticks and fortune cookies are from a Chinese New Year group luncheon I attended on Thursday...and went without a camera or my phone! The little paper sheep...Sheldon...is a friend who comes out of the closet in spring...and this is his year!

The Willow pattern in all it's myriad variations, was an English view of the Chinese art work and export transferware patterned china imported in the late 18th century. Minton was the first to popularize the pattern, followed by all the important potteries....

Willow comes in many colors with varying names...Willow, Old Willow, Red, Blue and Green Willow, as well as polychrome...or more than one color...versions...all basically have a pagoda, a bridge and 2 birds...this rhyme...one of many...tells the story...

Two big birds flying high
a little ship, passing by
three men standing on the shore,
a willow tree hanging o'er
an idle temple, there it stands
it wasn't built without hands,
an orange tree with oranges on,
and iron railings right along.
author unknown...1798

I used our usual tea table in the sunroom. Because I forgot the camera, I couldn't show you the meal, but it was delicious! We were sent home with little takeaway boxes of fortune cookies. My opened cookie above says:
Determination will get you through this...

Putting this post together reminded me of a visit we had to Chinatown in Victoria, BC Canad a few years ago when our son and daughter-in-law were with us for a visit....

We wanted Chinese food...if you are in Chinatown that goes without saying! We were directed through the historical Fan Tan Alley, listed as the narrowest true street in Victoria, to Don Mee's restaurant which was fabulous!  That's our kids walking ahead of us.

Don Mee's was on the first floor up and both huge, and packed!

We ordered the dinner for 4 and it was outstanding! I apologize because after these first 2 courses, we were all taking and eating so fast I forgot to take any other photos!  There were leftovers we took back to the room and the kids had them for breakfast!  Ahh to be young again....  But that memory made me look for a Chinese themed tea treat, and I found....these Glazed Lemon-Ginger Scones which look wonderful!


Glazed Lemon-Ginger Scones Recipe
Adapted from Food and Wine, January 2013
Make 8 scones | Prep Time: 25 minutes | Bake Time: 20-25 minute


2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup finely chopped candied ginger
2 cups confectioner (icing) sugar
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons lemon juice
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Sieve the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Add in the lemon zest and whisk all ingredients together.
Use a wooden spatula to combine the heavy cream and lemon juice with the dry ingredients in the bowl. Then fold in the candied ginger.
Lightly floured the working surface, knead the dough until it comes together. Make the dough into a ball. Let it rest uncovered for 2-3 minutes. Dust some flour on top and pat it into a 9-inch round disc, about 1/2 inch thick.
Using a floured knife, cut the dough into 8 wedges and arrange them 1 inch apart on the baking sheet.
Bake the scones for 20-25 minutes, lightly browned on the bottom. Remove from oven and let them rest on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring to the wire rack to cool completely.
To prepare the glaze, whisk the confectioner sugar and lemon juice until it is smooth. Then drizzle the glaze over the scones and let it stand for 15 minutes before serving.

Thanks so much for joining me for Tuesday Cuppa Tea! The Red Willow is available at Antiques And Teacups...just click on any of the teacup photos for more information.  Below is a list of some of the blog parties I am joining. And the ever present Linky, fo you to link your tea themed post. Pleas, as always, remember it and the comment linky are SSLLLOOOOOOOW...but be patient, it does arrive at last! And I LOVE to see your posts and comments. Have a fabulous week!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Tuesday Cuppa Tea, Violets Tea, Anniversary,Antique Violet Postcards

Hello and welcome to Tuesday Cuppa Tea. The folks on the east coast are enduring another wave of snow, and our are is breaking records for warmth and lack of snow....amazing!

I am focusing on Violets today...although hours are just peeping up and haven't flowered yet....So...we have a Violet tea party!

“Do you think amethysts can be the souls of good violets?” 
― L.M. MontgomeryAnne of Green Gables

Tea is in the sunroom, because for a few hours today we actually HAD sunshine today...long enough to take a walk and then put together a tea table of items with violets before it disappeared again...I still had a few heart shortbread cookies left that I made last week, and added a couple of ginger cookies from this weeks baking....

The table between our chairs was made during the 1890s and came to me from my grandmother...the one who started me on my tea and teacups obsession...it is English, and has twisted legs which are called Barley Twist, after the way barley sugar candy was twisted into sticks for a children's treat. It was a very popular furniture style in the Victorian and Edwardian eras....The table cloth is netting and is from my grandmother as well..although it has become popular lately with versions from China....

The first of my teacups for Tuesday Cuppa Tea was made by Royal Stafford, England in the 1940s and besides being a square shaped cup, it also has a molded flower handle...these are very collectible. I just love their work! Also, rather than painted or brushed gold trim, the set has little gold individually painted U shapes...very labor intensive, but Royal Stafford made wonderful china! The pattern is called Sweet Violets...

Royal Stafford grew out of the Thomas Poole & Gladstone China and operated in Longton, Stoke-on-Trent until 1992. It reformed in 2004 as RST Ltd and is making china again, but on a much smaller scale...but at least they're there!

“You are the only person who loves me in the world," said Elizabeth. "When you talk to me I smell violets.” 
― L.M. MontgomeryAnne of Windy Poplars

The next teacup is by Duchess, England in a Violets pattern made between 1947-1951...as old as me!!! It is such a classic and lovely bone china teacup...

Duchess was made by A. T. Finney & Sons which in 1969 became part of the Tams Group, Ltd. and then Grimwades acquired the company in the early 1990s when so many English potteries were either closing or consolidating...although they still have the patents and moulds. Grimwades is currently operating Royal Winton and beginning as of 1997 some new items, but Duchess has disappeared...

The last teacup for this week is a Shelley China Dainty shaped Violets patterned cup and saucer...and you KNOW I love Shelley...

The Violets teacup is pattern 13821 which was made from 1940-1966 when the pottery closed. But with the name being there as well, the teacup is from the 1955-1966. I love the lavender trim!

This is a Shelley bon bon dish also in the Violets pattern I thought I'd put to use as a sugar bowl with a pair of mid Victorian Apostle sugar tongs.....

And of course we have to have a Violets teapot...this is a new English bone china teapot from Springfield...one of the new potteries that have sprung up...that I am carrying...so pretty!  All of the china is available at Antiques And Teacups...just click on the photos for more info...

So that's it for my Violets tea. I hope you enjoyed it! On Monday Feb. 16th, we will have been married 41 years...thanks for many of you sending us good wishes...here is a wedding picture...SOOO 1970s!

Have a wonderful week! Below is the list of some of the blog parties I will be part of and there is the linky for your tea related posts...please remember that it is SSSLLLOOOOOOWWWW but if you are patient...it's there! And I love to read your comments, and can find you to visit!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Tuesday Cuppa Tea, Pink For Valentine's Day Tea, Mini Victoria Sponges

Hello and welcome to  my meme Tuesday Cuppa Tea looking toward upcoming Valentine's Day. So glad you could join me!

I had a bit of a Valentine tea in the sunroom between our chairs...we have downsized twice because of my husband's health issues, and so have few areas in our sun challenged Pacific Northwest where I can successfully photograph in the winter. But the sunroom is where we always are for morning tea, elevenses and afternoon tea, so....

I put together out tea table there with a pink and lavender theme...

The teacups, below, are all recent finds....

A Royal Albert Lavender Rose teacup from the 1980s...

I, of course, thought of Sandi from Rose Chintz Cottage who has this....I have a teapot in this pattern as well...which was made from 1982 until the early 1990s in England, production was moved to Indonesia, and then discontinued in 2008.

This next teacup is by Royal Grafton, from 1957-1961 with pretty pink and white and gold floral overlay. 

Royal Grafton is a trademark of A.B. Jones, Longton Staffordshire England. Royal Grafton and Grafton China were named for the Grafton works which was the name of the pottery.  The pottery closed during the wave of pottery closings in 1972. Their work is lovely. This teacup sold within 2 hours of listing it!

This is perhaps my favorite of the 3 teacups I have for today because it has a design mixing floral and landscape designs...See the roses? Okay, and then there is an English cottage alongside. Isn't that cute???

The cup and saucer is made by Elizabethan, England from the late 1950s and early 1960s. Elizabethan was a trade name of  Taylor & Kent, Longton which operated from 1867.  They were acquired by Churchill in the early 1990s during a potteries consolidation period but only survived a few years before being demolished....sigh...another fine pottery gone....

I love the shape and the brushed gold trim as well.

With so many potteries closing, a few newer, smaller potteries have opened making bone china again in England, and the teapot is by one of those...Springfield China. Hooray! May they last a long time!!!

The pattern is called Dot Rose Chintz and I thought it was perfect for our Valentine's Day tea!  

And this is an antique postcard dating to around 1910. The postcard says:

My Heart
Gold Is Nothing
Happiness Is All

How sweet a sentiment! This is called a Romance postcard and is a Real Photograph that has then been hand tinted. Cool!.

To see either the china shown or postcard at Antiques And Teacups, just click on the photos.

I posted this on my Facebook page yesterday and it was so popular I thought I'd add it to this post...lots of time to make these for Valentine's Day....

Mini Victoria Sponge Cakes

Mini Victorian Sponge Cakes By SUNIL VIJAYAKAR
150g (5½oz) unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
150g (5½oz) caster sugar
3 medium eggs
1tsp vanilla extract
150g (5½oz) self-raising flour
300ml (10fl oz) double cream
8-10tbsp strawberry jam
Icing sugar, for dusting
1 Preheat oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/ gas 4. Grease and line the bases of 8 spring-form cake tins 9cm (3½in) in diameter. Put on a large baking tray.
2 Using an electric hand whisk, mix the butter and sugar together in a large bowl until pale and fluffy. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs with the vanilla extract, then gradually beat in to the butter mixture, adding a little of the flour. Sift over the remaining flour and
gently fold in until just combined.Divide between the prepared cake tins, smoothing the surface.
3 Bake for about 20 minutes or until risen and golden. Cool in the tins for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and set aside to cool.
4 Lightly whip the cream to soft peaks then spread onto 4 of the sponge bases, top with a spoonful of jam and sandwich together with the remaining sponges. Dust each with icing sugar to serve.

Lastly, from Tea Time Magazine....their Valentine table set with Rose Chintz ironstone from Johnson Brothers...

And a last teacup stack from me!   ;)    

Wishing you all a Happy Valentine's Day! We are having a combined Valentine's Day and 41st anniversary dinner on Feb. 14th. at our favorite organic fresh foods local restaurant The Alder Wood Bistro. Our anniversary is really Feb. 16th, but they aren't open, so we decided to combine occasions.

Below is the list of some of the blog parties I will be part of and there is the linky for your tea related posts...please remember that it is SSSLLLOOOOOOWWWW but if you are patient...it's there! And I love to read your comments, and can find you to visit!


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