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, February 24, 2020

February Ends Spring Smiles Lily Of The Valley Time

It may be the end of February... 
but storms are still raging. We lost power all weekend from wind, hence the delay in posting!
but our bulbs are up...
maybe not blooming yet but growing vigorously!

And I am looking forward to it as always... except for the pollen and allergies. Pollen levels are already medium here for some things...

I have snowdrops up, but not Lily of The Valley yet... but have it blooming on some china!

I had a few Macarons left from an anniversary gift, so had a tea in the sunroom...

I found this wonderful Elizabethan, England 1950s cup and saucer and a matching plate in a wonderful Lily Of The Valley pattern recently...

Elizabethan finally ceased in 1989, but had a wonderful pedigree of Taylor and Kent, Queens and Rosina, and made nice quality bone china tea wares during it's life.

The pattern has a name, but no records exist to know if it had a pattern name as well... One of the things I love about Shelley...

I looked to see if I had any antique postcards with Lily Of The Valley, and found these 2 Victorian era cards. One was used as gift enclosures or hand delivered with birthday wishes, as it was not postally used. The other was mailed.
I LOVE old postcards!

This one is embossed and a copper metallic, and just beautiful!

This  one was mailed in 1909... a sender of few words...

This charming birthday postcard is just wonderful!
Not maybe Lily Of The Valley, but...
Love the scene!

This one was not mailed, so was given by hand...with or without a gift.
Truly keepsakes indeed!
And judging by the handwriting and ink as well as features of the card, from the same era.

Now THAT'S a Lily Of The Valley treasure!

Diamond, gold, Nephrite Jade and Pearl brooch... 
photo from Doyle Auctions...

Have a lovely week and lots of tea!

Monday, February 17, 2020

Our 46th Anniversary! So Grateful! Welbeck Chintz, Sadler Teapot and Fancy Cupcakes! Oh my!

February 16, 1974 I married the love of my life... and 46 years later... still together!
So grateful for every year we can share together, in sickness and health, still as one.

This little vignette tea was done for Valentine's Day. The red seems to arrive early and linger a bit as it always encompasses our anniversary as well.

I've used the Sadler, England Brigadoon landscape red transferware teapot I recently acquired...

Made in England in the 1970s, before they too moved out of the country...
love the Scottish landscape with castle design!

I think I mentioned, that while I may have a cup and saucer for tea my Honey always has a mug as it is easier for him with the Parkinson's Disease. Well my teacup today was this pretty Royal Winton Grimwades Welbeck Chintz teacup.

Although the pattern itself originated in 1932, the pattern was reissued in 1995 and retailed through Victoria magazine...
here is a page from 1998 December issue when Victoria was selling it...

Here is the issue and page. I have had and sold many items of the pattern, and they don't stay around much! The last was a pair of candleholders that sold last Christmas...

But I digress... back to teatime!

My husband's tea-mug-of-choice was a Valentine mug by Crown Trent, England bone china mug gifted us a few years ago...  Perfect for this weekend!

His tea choice was Marks and Spencers Gold blend we got with our Christmas Brit import order. He like it, and I like it better than their ususal blend. This has a bit more depth of flavour.

As it was Valentine's day, we had shortbread hearts and macarons... a tasty afternoon tea indeed!

And for our anniversary on Sunday the 16th, we had picked up some of the lovely cupcakes form our local award winning That Takes The Cake bakery here in Sequim...

We got 2 each of 3 flavors...
Coconut cream... my Honey's favorite...
Almond Poppy Seed
Dark Chocolate Caramel Sea Salt...
although all their flavors are lovely...
special occasions only!

So hoping your weekend was as special as ours!

And Happy President's Day!

Monday, February 10, 2020

Valentine's Day Tea Things

I have been dealing with allergies this week... amazingly early, so didn't get a post finished, so am reposting one that was very popular for Valentine's Day from a couple of years ago...

I took advantage of a bit of sun in the sunroom where I was reading a couple of February Victoria magazines and 2 books I have of Victorian ephemera, and thought...looks like a post to me!

It seemed so serendipitous...sitting there with all the elements...
the Valentine small tea cloth I had made a couple of years ago already on my little tea table...

And having been perusing The Victorian Scrapbook by Cynthia Hart, John Grossman and Priscilla Dunhill...
a wonderful collection of Victorian era postcards, clip art or dcraps as they were then called, trade cards and all manner of wonderful Victorian images...

The chapters include
Home Sweet Home
Romantic Notions
a total of 7

As a cross stitcher, I thought this was fun... 
several pages form Victorian needlework magazines...
this page from 1887 includes a pattern for the spaniel that could be made in needlepoint, petit point of cross stitch...so cute!

And the first of my teacups...a Shelley...but you guessed, didn't you!
But today, 2 the same, but...NOT!

This is a Shelley in the Ripon shape, and in the Rose And Red Daisy pattern.
But...this is a quite rare one, because it has a matte black exterior...not glossy at all. The interiors are the palest yellow, which did not photograph well.

The cup and saucer has the number 13439, which the pattern books say was made between 1940-1966 when the pottery closed, and unfortunately not marrowed down in date. 
The /24 after the main number refers to the colorway for the pattern.  Remember, that...more later!

The other of the 2 hardback books is a smaller one, Victorian Book Of Love
also by Hart, Grossman and Gill

This is also filled with Victorian scraps, postcards, images, calling cards and Valentines...

May Cupid's shafts by love imprest,
Smile sweetly soothing in thy breast
Inspiring ardent love for me
As pure and true as mine for thee...

Altogether, both books are feasts for the eyes,  especially if you love Victoriana as I do...

And on to the next teacup...or...is it the same one, you ask?????
No! Same shape, same black...only it isn't! This is a shiny black, not matte black like the rest...

Same pattern, right? Well sort of. This is also a pale yellow interior with the Rose And Red Daisy pattern, but this is called a combo because it also has the addition of the pink Beaded border, while the last teacup didn't have a border.
Shelley had a lot of leeway with patterns, I sometimes think that the artisisans making them were allowed to be a bit creative, or the designers tried different version to see which were the most popular.
I know I have seen many more shiny black versions that the matte black seen above since my first on in 1988.

The pattern number is 13439, just as the matte black version above, but notice the different secondary number.
This on reads /72 indicating although the same pattern, it is a different entry in the colors department. 
I LOVE Shelley...they kept such good records!

And the rest of my afternoon tea time reading this week...
Victoria magazines.

Should have gotten out my Wedgwood Embossed Queens Ware teacup with the magazine below, but already had the Shelleys out so...

A friend came for tea, and brought a package of Valentine Vanilla petit fours, so am sharing the leftovers on my family Noritake Revenna china...

Help yourself! A real treat! So thanks for joining me for Tuesday Cuppa Tea!

Happy Valentine's Day to you all! 
Celebrate all the many people and things we love...
with a cuppa!

Monday, February 3, 2020

Welcome February with Groundhogs, Valentines and Winter Still

Welcome to February!

With the possibility of new life beginning.
February is usually our most wintry month, and it is starting out that way with more than average rain and snow flurries....
The above is from Country Diary Of An Edwardian Lady by Edith Holden, a year round favorite.

1935 February cover of Good Housekeeping magazine, reminds us February 2nd was Groundhog Day, and supposedly an early spring is in view...

I won't mind!

And for a February tea, this was tea time yesterday, while my Honey was watching the Super Bowl. I often have only one teacup in my photos, because my Honey always has a mug as it is so much easier for him with Parkinson's Disease and his tremor.

This is a gorgeous cup and saucer with matching plate in a version of Royal Albert, England's Old English Roses that is rarely seen. This was part of a series called Treasure Chest which had the most expensive wide sponged gold trim along with the usual lush Roses the pattern is known for.

The particular cup and saucer has the seems to have been made earlier than the plate as the cup and saucer has the earlier Royal Albert Crown China mark which dates from 1927-1935, but the plate is the first mark after the Crown was dropped from the name, dating it to 1935 to 1946.

I found this fun woven metallic red fabric tubes heart a few years ago and still love it!

I was wanting to make something different, and remember a recipe from my childhood I hadn't made for years. The reminder for me was finding it pass by on my Facebook feed from Marie Rayner of TheEnglish Kitchen.
My grandmother... my English Nana who infused me with her love of afternoon tea... used to make these. I found Marie's recipe years ago when she was Oak Cottage, and it was very close to my Nan's.

She has updated it and made them in a heart pan, as I did above too!

So tasty, not too sweet, but with no preservatives, have to be eaten fairly quickly. I made some leftover batter into a small loaf cake, which froze well, and we cut that into pieces and had with butter and jam... 

Her recipe:
*Queen Cakes*
Makes 12 small buns
or 8 heart shaped cakes

Dating from the 18th century, these cakes have always been baked in small individual tins, either patty pans or individual heart shaped molds.   Sweet and buttery, flavoured with lemon, and stogged full of lovely dried currants

125g soft butter (generous half cup)
125g caster sugar (2/3 cup)
2 large free range eggs
150g plain flour (1 1/2 cups)
1 tsp baking powder
the finely grated zest of one un-waxed lemon
125g of dried currants (scant cup)
a splash of milk

Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4.   Butter a 12 hole patty pan, or 8 heart shaped pans.  Line the bottoms of the heart tins with baking paper, and the patty pans with paper cases.

Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.  Beat in the eggs, one at a time, eating well after each addition.   Beat in the lemon zest.  Sift together the flour and baking powder.  Stir in the currants.  Using a large metal spoon, fold in the flour mixture, along with a splash of milk, to give a gentle dropping consistency.   Spoon into the prepared cases, filling each no more than 2/3 full.

Bake in the heated oven for 20 minutes, until well risen and the tops spring back when lightly touched.  Allow to cool in the tins for 5 to 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.  Dust with icing sugar and serve.

Delicious when fresh, but can be stored in an airtight container for up to two days.


Have a lovely week! 


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