Monday, May 4, 2015

Dainty Baby Blue Tea

Hello again tea friends and new readers,

Welcome! I hope you had a nice spring weekend. I have been so excited to share today's Shelley teacups with you. When I first became interested in expanding my inherited teacup collection, I began to research workmanship, pattern designs and value of English bone china because I wanted to concentrate on collecting teacups from mainly one pottery. Most paths led me to Shelley. I'm so impressed with the delicacy and designs of their teaware. Of course I cherish all of my non-Shelley teacups and I want to continue to learn more about the different potteries past and present.

While the main focus of my blog will be teacups and their histories, I plan on reviewing teas and tearooms as well starting next week.
We'll enjoy having our tea in two vintage baby blue Shelley teacups. I acquired both teacups on ebay. Most people have predominately pink teacups in their collection. I have blue and gold.

The first Shelley teacup is Blue Rock which was a very popular pattern. It was produced from 1940 until the pottery closed in 1966. 

All Shelley teacups have specific shape names. This is the beloved Dainty shape. Personally it is my favorite Shelley shape. It reminds me of a flower and is perfect for a special tea. Many other potteries have copied this shape.


If you hold a Shelley by its handle, click your finger onto the cup. You should hear a ping which is a sign of an authentic Shelley. (Well, it has worked with some of my other teacups such as Paragon.) 


Some of the more recent Shelleys have the pattern name and number by the back stamp. The orange squiggly lines indicate which artist painted the cup/saucer for salary purposes.


 The second featured teacup is a Shelley tall shaped demitasse. Its pattern is Harebell and it was produced at the same time as the Blue Rock pattern. Both have such sweet baby blue flowers in their patterns.
 Love the inside the cup designs in both teacups!
 I really enjoy demitasse cups.

No tea would be complete without a special treat. Banana bread complements a wide variety of teas and is a go to recipe for me. Volunteer roses were a welcomed surprise in my front yard this week.



Over the years I have tried so many banana bread recipes. This is by far my family's favorite. I get great results every time I bake it. I found it on the Food Network's website. Recipe by Cathy Lowe

The house smells so good every time I make it.

Click here for the recipe.





One of the most useful items I have purchased as of late has been this Shelley reference book by Sheryl Burdess. It's a comprehensive listing of almost all of the Shelley patterns and their dates of production. I purchased it on amazon. Usually I won't pay quite so much for a book, but I must say it's been invaluable.
Not all of the patterns are photographed. Here is the Blue Rock teacup I just featured. The author is British and many have commented that her American values for the teacups are a bit inflated. Perhaps the British values are too as I found this teacup on ebay for $20. Other ebay listings for this teacup are as high as $100.
Without a pattern number or name, it would be very challenging to find specific teacup information. The book is 248 pages long with most pages formatted like the one above.

As always thank you for visiting. I look forward to reviewing a favorite tea of mine next week.
All the best,
Nora

This quote reminds me of the small but beautiful blue flowers on these teacups:
"The flower that smells the sweetest is shy and lowly."
                        ~William Wordsworth

14 comments:

  1. Shelley has LOVELY teacups! They have gotten VERY dear in price so I really don't have any. But I love looking at them.

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  2. What beautiful teacups! I love the Blue Willow teapot as well.

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  3. Your teacups are beautiful, Nora. I have only one Shelley and it was a shower gift many years ago. I do cherish it. Wonderful posting and the banana bread looks delicious.

    Blessings,
    Sandi

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  4. Beautiful teacups! I love Banana Nut bread!

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  5. that was interesting. I love the first of the two teacups the best. Haven't had banana bread in ages. I add crushed pineapple to mine to make it nice and moist.

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  6. I don't have any Shelley teacups, Nora, but I do admire yours and others I have seen. Both of your are so pretty, but I especially love the Blue Rock one. Banana bread for tea time sounds like a wonderful treat!

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  7. Beautiful pieces! The shape of each cup is so lovely. I adore blue, too, so more of my collection definitely is of that color. Thank you for sharing the recipe, too!

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  8. How pretty! The "Dainty" shape of Shelley's teacups is also a favourite with me. I'd love to add a Shelley teacup to my collection so I always keep an eye out for them during my treasure hunting.

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  9. Nora:
    You have two really beautiful Shelly's. There is a case at the Brass Armadillo full of them at about $150.00 each - a few for $75.00. So you see - you have treasures.

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  10. Hi Nora: I always love to learn more about tea cups. Shelly's are one of my favorites. I only have 6 cups, however, each one is so unique and beautiful. Have a wonderful Mother's Day. Blessings, Martha

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  11. Beautiful teacups and what a great find that book was for you.

    Diana

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  12. Hi Nora,
    I just love your dainty blue teacups! All Shelley's look so dainty and fragile but your pastel blue ones are especially pretty. Be careful washing them - one of my Shelley treasures broke in my hands as I was drying it for my blog posting. Their china is so thin on some. I think $20 was a good price. I would love that book too! Happy Tea Day! Karen

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  13. So lovely! Are those forget-me-nots?

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    Replies
    1. I did a little research and some say the flowers are wildflowers, but I think they are Rock Cress which comes in purple, blue, white and pink. Makes sense with the name being Blue Rock. Thanks for visiting!

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Thank you for visiting my blog today. I really look forward to reading your comments. Have a nice day! ~Nora