Charity Vintage: Fajance bird plaque

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Vintage 1950s Fajance pottery bird plaque for sale by & in support of Age UK Cheshire East (ends 29 Aug, 2014 10:58:45 BST)

This week we’re featuring yet another lovely piece of vintage Scandinavian pottery. This is a Fajance plaque designed by Beth Breyen for Royal Copenhagen in the 1960s. It’s sometimes referred to as a ‘Crazy Bird’ and is from the Tenera range. We’ve only ever had a spoon rest with this design but you can also find it on salt pots, trivets and strangely, coffee filter holders.

Fajance is an earthenware pottery that derives its name from Faenza in Italy, where it was first manufactured in the 16th century.

The plaque is in perfect condition and is being sold by & in support of Age UK Cheshire East*

*Age UK Cheshire East is a local, independent charity dedicated to improving the later lives of people in Cheshire East. They do this by offering projects and services that maintain health & wellbeing, improve knowledge and provide practical support to anyone who is, or cares for someone, 50+

Shelf Pottery bird

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vintage Shelf Pottery bird with yellow tulips in the background

We picked up this striking pottery bird last week. It’s actually a money box and it was made by a company whose wares are very familiar to us – namely Shelf Pottery – who operated in Shelf, near Halifax and only a few miles away from where we live in Todmorden. We often come across their pieces at local markets, antique centres & auctions.

vintage Shelf Pottery bird

It’s quite distinctive pottery in terms of design & colourway with the warm oatmeal, cream, beige & browns. We love some of the stylised birds that they produced in the 1970s era. You can also find some great bowls & vases with quite eccentric and abstract forms. You’ll find a little more info and images of a few more examples on the 20th Century Forum

Wednesday Wish: Birdhouse key holder

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lime green birdhouse keyholder
Sparrow In Birdhouse Key Holder: £12.50, Notonthehighstreet

The little wall-mounted hooks just inside our front door where we hang our keys went AWOL during the redecoration of our little porch area.

I don’t know about you, but if I’m at home, I need to keep my bunch of keys in EXACTLY the same place… AT ALL TIMES… or else cataclysmic chaos ensues prior to attempting to leave the house!

I thought this little fella would look great perched in our porch –  available in 4 colours – pink, black, yellow and green.

Gimme Five! Bird feeders

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selection of five different bird feeders

Snow currently feels like a permanent fixture around the whole of the UK. I’ve really been feeling sorry for our wildlife – especially the birds. One of last week’s Winter Watch programmes told of the decimation that happens when birds can’t get through the inches of snow to feed on seeds, worms, slugs and insects.

Why don’t you help them out? Here are five of our favourite bird feeders that we’ve found online – from low-tech to the bird equivalent of a swanky, Michelin-starred restaurant!

  1. Flock Follies bird feeder – Feeds the birds AND adds a burst of colour to your garden!
  2. Roundabout fly-through feeder – Made of polished copper , this one will mellow into a beautiful verdigris.
  3. Bottle bird feeder – Just add an empty wine or beer bottle!
  4. Umbra contemporary outdoor bird house – An avian take on a modernist des res!
  5. Unplugged Barcelona bird feeder – Inspired by the famous, Mies van der Rohe-designed Barcelona Pavilion.

O is for… Owl

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detail from a brown vintage pottery money box in the shape of an owl

These are the big eyes of our latest owl – in this case, a pottery money box.

pottery pan trivet / pot stand in the shape of an owl pottery pan trivet / pot stand in the shape of an owl

vintage tin money box with owl decoration vintage pottery mug with owl face in relief on the side

They never stay with us long as these feathered friends are consistently popular in our shop.

green glazed vintage owl figure produced by Lotus Pottery

Whether in the form of money boxes, mugs, pot stands, textile prints, pictures or book illustrations.

small vintage white lustre pottery figure in the shape of an owl small vintage Shelf Pottery owl figure

vintage white pottery mug with transfer printed owl figure brown vintage Hornsea Pottery mug with transfer printed owl decoration designed by John Clappison

We’ve blogged a fair few times about the great illustrator, Kenneth Townsend. He designed the cutest owl as part of his Menagerie series – apparently the owl was his favourite animal!

vintage Kenneth Townsend pottery owl tile

Another wonderful illustrator with a thing for owls was Celestino Piatti who once said, “You can draw an owl a thousand times, and never find out its secret”.

mosaic of vintage Celestino Piatti owl illustrations
image credit: Fishink

We’ve had a quick trawl on the web for some more owls – here are some favourites:

cover from vintage book, "A Book of Various Owls" by John Hollander, illustrated by Tomi Ungerer and published by W.W. Norton & Company in 1963
image credit: Vintage Kids” Books my Kid Loves

bright orange ceramic owl available from Anthropologie
Wise Ol’ Canister, Orange: £118 – Anthropologie

Happy owl open edition print by Matte Stephens on Etsy
Happy owl open edition print by Matte Stephens: $35 – Etsy

"day time owl" 3D art tutorial from mmmcrafts"night time owl" 3D art tutorial from mmmcrafts
image credit: mmmcrafts

vintage german matchbox cover with owl illustration
image credit: Shailesh Chavda