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I am a quilter living in Woodbridge, Suffolk who has made quilts since I was a teenager. I also ring bells! Both are great British traditions....I will try to feature some of my antique Welsh and Durham quilts, the quilts I make myself, my quilting activities and also some of my bellringing achievements. Plus as many photos as I can manage. NB: Double click on the photos to see greater detail, then use back button to return to the main page.

Sunday 28 November 2010

Welsh Gaudy

I have noticed that many of the quilting blogs feature collections of china or other pottery. I have only a small collection of Welsh Gaudy china. I don't know enough about this to collect - but I do like the bright colours and the fact that it is early enough to be hand painted and not mass made.

Welsh gaudy china is colourful and fun, and not as expensive as some other types of china. It was made at numerous potteries in Staffordshire, as well as Wales and the Newcastle area. It dates from 1820 to 1850 and each piece is therefore likely to be over 150 years old. Much was exported to America from Liverpool to Philadelphia, where it was especially popular with German settlers.

Welsh gaudy was inexpensive china for ordinary families - each piece would have originally cost a few pennies. Tea sets, bowls and jugs were the most common items. The colours are bright and lively, and based on Japanese porcelain.

What is certain is that these items were produced by "sweat" labour - often children as young as 8. Others items were produced by untrained outworkers - and all were paid by the number they could produce each day.

This probably accounts for the naive, often crude designs - and the variable nature of the painting. The designs are mostly floral in nature.

There are said to be over 300 patterns - but the potteries are mostly unnamed and the named patterns are later inventions of collectors.

I don't usually like china or glass but I do like these cups a lot! The colours and designs are wonderful.


  1. I like Gaudy Welsh too and have a few jugs - you have given me an idea - I must take some pictures and post!

  2. I have for many years bought a small Welsh Gaudy mug for my goddaughter at Christmas until a few years back she asked her mother why does Sue keep buying me these mugs. She is of a welsh father so hope one day she may appreciate these lovely mugs I have purchased over the years. Its just I wanted to give her something from her heritage. I love the intensity of the colours.