Sunday, June 15, 2014

The World's Smallest Tureen

My fascination with ironstone tureens rivals obsession, but it is (thankfully) limited by my budget.

They always have such pretty details. Maybe I'm also amused because they are fairly obsolete now, having been replaced by crockpots and insulated bowls that actually retain heat.

Nonetheless, I always look at them when I find them in antique stores.  I open the little lids and feel the carving.  Then I see the price and think, "Oh, isn't that nice. I need to not break this."

A booth at the Knitting Mill keeps plenty of antique ironstone on the shelves, and I have eyed a certain tiny tureen the past three times I've been there.  Friday while perusing, I did my typical dance of opening the lid and thinking how cute it was then saw the price: $48.  "Hmmm..." I thought to myself, "I've looked at this three times, and I still love it.  Is it close to any sort of holiday by which I can justify such a useless purchase?"  

The answer was no (Friday the 13th did not seem like a valid holiday), but somehow I still rationalized buying it on its cuteness merit.

I love the intricate details...

... and I certainly do not mind the cracked glazing.

I love that this one still had the spoon, even though I'm not completely sure it's original to the set...

I can tell it is old, but I do not know how old.  Do any ironstone wizards know what this marking means?  I think it says "Red Cliffs" on the top line, but I can't read the second line.

I spent some time on ebay and couldn't find one with exactly this marking or exactly the same details.

Anyway, for now the tureen-for-one is fulfilling its purpose of being cute atop the dining room buffet...

Happy Sunday!

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