China and ceramics from the Art Deco period of the 1920s and 1930s have remained very popular with collectors and can often command high prices, especially the designs of Clarice Cliff. However, if you like the geometric style and bright colours of the Art Deco period you can quickly assemble a wonderful collection of good quality ceramics on little money.
While the pattern may have been designed by Clarice Cliff, the plates, cups and coffee pots were decorated by a number of different painters employed by the different potteries and the quality of the output varied greatly. As a collector you should be looking out for Gray’s Pottery who first employed female art studen Susie Cooper in 1922. Susie had studied at the Stoke-on-Trent City Art School under Gordon Forsyth who arranged her employment at Gray’s, where he himself worked. She moved very quickly from decorating to working alongside Gordon in design and she was appointed resident designer in 1923.
Few records were kept but her first pattern is thought to be 2866 and by the time she left to set up here own company in 1929 the numbers had reached 8450. Her contribution was huge and in 1927 a special backstamp was created incorporating the words ‘designed by Susie Cooper’.
In 1927 Gray’s launched a range of banded designs that were thought to be by Susie Cooper. They were made in many colour combinations with wavy bands. You would be able to pick up a tea canister in that pattern for around £20 or £30. Susie Cooper is well known for her geometric patterns and Cubist (8071) is probably the best known, containing primary colours with black lines and shapes. A coffee can and saucer would be between £200 and £300. Pattern 8127 is considered to be the rarest and a coffee can with saucer would set you back £300. A rare example of a Clarice Cliff Coffe can would be at least three times that. Continue reading “Collecting Affordable Art Deco China and Ceramics”