Monday, 18 June 2012

:: Midwinter Homage

Thrift finds-gasp!
 Now this is a going to be a long post, so go make yourself a cuppa and settle in!
Midwinter, popular for collectors due to the tireless designing of notable UK Designer Jessie Tait.

Spanish Garden and Country Garden 1960's
3rd edition of the Midwinter Pottery Book.
I have been hunting for this book for a while now, so when the 3rd edition became available, I swooped like a hungry falcon!

I have learnt from its glossy pages that the Midwinter Pottery was looking to boost sales after the post war gloom, they created the stylecraft shape (1953) inspired by a trip to the West Coast U.S where Roy Midwinter viewed the work of Eva Zeisel 
(psst linked to Mid2Mod, Dana did a great post here and this is where I first learnt of Eva)and Russell Wright.

These wares were rimless, organic in shape, no banding typical of traditional pre-war forms and the colour palette was brighter, cleaner!

The stylecraft shape was developed to have an "ease of cleaning and economic storage" for "smaller homes and tighter budgets" all to captured the younger generation.
This was the beginning of the "starter pack", 20 pieces- four tea cups & saucers, tea plates, dinner plates and cereal bowls.
Young couples could add to their collection and replace as necessary. 
Does this not sound familiar?
Do you remember buying your first set of crockery?

 Browsing through this lovely book I have selected the Midwinter ranges I will happily swoop on, if I found them in the wild!
Plant Life by Terence Conran.

The "Plant Life" design in the fashion shape 1956.
What a delightful design and still relevant to today's current market!


 This design is in the fashion shape (1955)
again the colour combination and organic motif is timeless. I don't think I could handle the complete set, to use daily but a nice wee plate or vase or both would be nice!


 "Festival" in the fashion shape was inspired by the Festival of Britain.

 "Savanna" in the fashion shape and the fancy shape (1940's-1960's).

Vase Collection-Tonga, Candlesticks, Bands & Dots.
  I fear another collection is going to start if I ever manage to get my hands on one of these beauties!

image via book.
These are the lovely showroom ladies  c:1960, look at those hairdo's, glasses and pins!
 If I was born in this era, I think this is where I would like to be, move over Jessie Tait!

 Thanks for reading!


 In the book there are excellent images of the shape guides and pictures of the early design drawings for some of the popular designs, I haven't posted these because I strongly encourage you to buy the book...and I don't want to upset the copyright police either!

Images Via


  1. LOVE the thrifted finds! That was an awesome score. Love the showroom ladies too. x

  2. Great post! I love the designs of Jessie Tait and Terence Conran. I think my favorite is Nature Study by Conran. And thanks for the mention. I was on a Midwinter kick for a while and did several posts on the subject. That may have been before you started following.

  3. It looks like an amazing book! I love the Jessie Tait pieces too (actually I have one winging it's way to me as we speak! A great find on Alessandra's blog, la Casita... She had a Terence Conran 'Nature Study' 1955 plate in her webshop that I couldn't resist!... I also have 4 plates in the Zambesi design, but yes, I would pounce if I came across some Festival! Tonga and Savanna look fabulous too! *sigh* hopefully the ceramic gods will smile on us some more in the future Pippa! :) Great post. Kx

  4. Thanks Donna!
    Yes I think it was before I started following Dana but truth here I often scroll through past posts when I want to research something, I figure if it's good you have posted it already!
    Well Kylie now I'm green with envy, lovely plate and I like that it has no butterfly on it, I'm not keen on the butterfly motif. If you see more send them my way! :)

  5. I watched Grand Designs last night. A repeat and one of my favourites. A couple renovated their 70's bungalow on the Isle of White, have you seen it?
    Anyway, I spied some Midwinter pieces in their kitchen. They were still there post reno in their new kitchen (of course!)

  6. I will have to look it up! Love Kevin, second husband! Just got my hands on some more West German Pottery too! My faves! Will Teatowel Tuesday be back soon?

  7. You found both! in an oppy? wow!Yellow and grey look surprisingly good together.

  8. Beautiful! Love all of it - mid century has to be my favourite style era. That fashion coffee pot is absolutely the bees knees.


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