Archives for October 2009

Roseville Cosmos Pattern

1DSC09243-vert Everyone has a favorite Roseville art pottery pattern.  Others, like me, tend to discover a new reason to look at an old favorite with different eyes from time to time – which means, of course, my favorites are sometimes determined on a whim.  Bushberry, Bleeding Heart and even colorful Roseville Savona– all of these have been at the top of my "must have" lists at one time and are apt to come full circle to rest at the top once again. 

Still, there's no denying the beauty of the Roseville Cosmos pattern.  Introduced in 1939, this quiet pattern is available in blues, greens and tans.  It was generally marked with die impressed marks, including the Roseville script, the shape number as well as its size. 

It's the individuality of each piece of Roseville Cosmos that keeps me hooked.  The baskets, with their curved handles, generous bowl sizes and shadings of varying colors are always striking, but it's much more than that.  Take the Cosmos blue jardinière, for instance.  Notched rims, delicate flowers and the combination of green and blue bring the entire pottery alive. 

Another great piece of art from this pattern is the 10 and 15" brown ewer.  Its shadings, unique cuts and gentle handles on either side present quite the original look.  It's regal – but delicate.  Its base is slightly flared, which only lends to that regal grace. 

Other pieces available in this pattern include cornucopias, console bowls, candle holders, flower frogs, hanging baskets, wall pockets and window boxes.  Because they're moderately priced, they make an excellent pattern for new Roseville art pottery collectors to begin with and they're still considered easily attainable, so building a collection in this pattern should not prove to be too difficult.

So what's your favorite Roseville Pattern and why?  We'd love to hear your story.  Drop us an email and tell us about it and be sure to read more about Roseville art pottery on our history page.

Donna McGill – Just Art Pottery

Rare Newcomb Pottery Vase Discovered in Thrift Store

NC 1 Imagine finding an art pottery vase in a thrift store, buying it for a few dollars and then discovering months later it's actually a rare piece of Newcomb Pottery.   That's exactly what happened to a woman on a recent trip to a local thrift store. 

After seeing the pretty blue vase on a shelf, she initially passed it up.  A week later, the vase still on her mind, she returned to the thrift store and purchased it.  She brought it home and put it on a shelf, only to have a visitor tell her a few months later it was Newcomb Pottery.  Not only that, but she also discovered it was worth quite a bit.  Turns out, it was a scenic Newcomb vase decorated with oak trees and a moon by Sadie Irvine.  Its vibrant blue color and artwork is what initially attracted her, but you might be surprised at what happened next.

After realizing what it was, she decided to list it on eBay.  Wondering what it brought?  Her response was, "I just sold it on eBay for $3,300.  It was like winning the lottery!"  That five inch vase that stayed on her mind for a week before she returned to buy it brought in over $3,000!

We all know the excitement of stumbling on those pieces that speak to us – whether it's the unique shape, lovely blues, browns or reds or maybe it just catches our eye and we know it's exactly what's missing on our mantelpiece.  Often, we discover them in the most unlikely places – thrift stores, estate sales and even yard sales.  It's not often those pieces speak to our wallets too!

This wasn't her first discovery of American art pottery in a thrift store – she recently purchased a pairNC 2 of six inch Roseville Laurel pots for $10 each.  This just serves as a reminder that rare art pottery can still be found when and where we least expect.  In these cases, a shelf in a dusty thrift store was where a rare Newcomb vase and two nice Roseville pots were discovered.

For more information on the history of Newcomb College, visit our Newcomb Pottery history page and if you have a similar story of those rare art pottery finds, please drop us an email.  We would love to share your story with readers.

Roseville Pine Cone Pottery Marks

A new Roseville pottery collector who inherited a few pieces of brown Pine Cone asked for clarification on why some pieces are marked and others are unmarked.  He was also concerned that the unmarked vases and those pieces with marks that did not include USA may be non-vintage or reproductions.

Pine Cone was probably the most popular pattern of Roseville from its introduction in 1935 throughout its years of production.  As a result of this popularly and the resulting extended years of production, Pine Cone is one of the few Roseville patterns that was marked four different ways including:

  1. Foil labels were used in 1935.  Typically these labels are missing leaving the piece unmarked. Some examples of Roseville Pine Cone from this time period were also marked with a hand written shape number in crayon.  2692
  2. Die-impressed (incised) mark including Roseville (in script) and the shape number and size such as 632-6.  The 632 is the shape number for a jardiniere and the 6 indicated that the inside diameter of the jardiniere is 6".  It is very important to note the mark used between 1936 and 1939 did not include USA.  A very common misperception among new Roseville collectors is that pieces without the USA mark are reproductions.   2977
  3. Starting in 1940, Pine Cone was marked with a raised and molded mark that included Roseville USA and the size and shape number.  It is believed that in the early 1940s Roseville Pottery ended production of the Pine Cone pattern.  The raised USA  Pine Cone mark is probably the least common of the four variations.  DSC5457
  4. In 1953 Roseville Pottery reintroduced the Pine Cone pattern.  These later Pine Cone pieces were marked with the raised Roseville USA script mark along with the shape number and size.  Some of the Pine Cone Modern pieces are also marked with a die-impressed PINE CONE. Pine Cone Modern included 51 shapes according to the factory brochure.  Each of the Pine Cone Modern shapes were assigned shape numbers in the 400s. Pine Cone Modern remained very popular until the Roseville factory was sold in 1954.   PICT6809

  Greg Myroth – Just Art Pottery 

Additional Resources:

Roseville Pottery – Pine Cone Modern

Roseville Pottery Marks

Top 10 Pottery Searches for September 2009

We have the most searched pottery for September listed below.  Take a look and see if your 1 favorites made the list.

1.    Roseville Patterns A-E – The Roseville Cremo is part of this group, as is the Roseville Dogwood with its intricate line patterns and textured feel.

2.    Roseville Patterns F-L – If you're a fan of Roseville Iris, it's in this group.  These are identified by their softer blues, browns and pinks and offer over 40 shapes. 

3.    Weller – Still a favorite, Weller has a series of vases and jardinières that are stunning.

4.    Rookwood – Last month, I mentioned the Rookwood "Pears on a Branch Tile"; this month, take a look at the 1892 Basket.  It has quite an unusual shape with beautiful colors.

5.    McCoy – What can we say?  McCoy is an exceptional pottery collection that offers so much and remains a favorite among collectors.

6.    Van Briggle – Everyone loves Van Briggle Pottery.  Maybe it's the large sizes, spectacular colors or unique shapes; regardless, we understand that passion – we love it as much as our customers.

7.    Roseville Patterns S-Z – Look for the Roseville Topeo and the Roseville Tuscany in this group.

8.    Roseville Patterns M-R – The Roseville Mayfair is the perfect collection for those drawn to art deco.  The Mayfair offers several designs and color schemes and often, their finishes are quite glossy.

9.    Newcomb College Pottery – This collection has some of the most beautiful pottery vases of any collection.

10.   Fulper Pottery – Those who love the scalloped edges found in some art pottery will appreciate Fulper Pottery.  Quite collectible and ideal for those just discovering a love for art pottery.

2 Grueby Pottery and Teco Pottery both just missed last month's top ten.  We invite
you to browse Just Art Pottery's entire inventory.  Be sure to take a look at our new arrivals, too.

Donna McGill

Top 10 Roseville Pottery Searches for September, 2009

Leaves are falling and Fall has officially arrived.  You can almost sense the seasons changing. Bleedingheart And speaking of changes, there were some shifts in the top Roseville pottery searches during September.  Apple Blossom, a personal favorite, maintains its top spot. Where does your favorite Roseville rank?

Pine Cone– This pattern, introduced in the mid-1930s has over 90 patterns.  It remains a favorite Roseville pattern for many collectors.


Freesia– The Freesia window boxes are beautiful Roseville pieces to own.  The blues, browns and greens come together in the Freesia patterns to present an elegant look.


Bushberry– The Roseville Bushberry is all about texture.  The Bushberry Blue Cornucopia is the perfect recommendation for those just discovering Roseville.


Magnolia– This is another Roseville introduction made in the mid-1940s.  These Magnolia themed pottery selections are beautiful additions for any Roseville collection.


Bleeding Heart- It's been said two collectors who both insist Bleeding Heart is the best of Roseville will each have a list of completely different reasons.  The matte finishes enhance the beauty.


Snowberry – The Roseville Snowberry Vases are exceptional!  Most are between 6 and 8 inches in height and display lovely blues, greens and pinks.


White Rose – The Roseville White Rose is still a collector's favorite.  The delicate blues and greens beautifully frame the white roses these Roseville pieces are named for.


Futura– The epitome of Art Deco, the Roseville Futura is found with many colors and is a bit more contemporary.


Peony– Many collectors admire the Roseville Peony collection because of the green colorings.  Indeed, they blend beautifully with the yellows, whites and pinks.  The Peony collection is another excellent recommendation for those just beginning to collect art pottery.

Peony It's worth mentioning Baneda, Clematis and Zephyr Lily was just shy of hitting the top ten for last month.  You never can tell, though.  They may claim the top three spots for October.

And there you have the ten most searched Roseville pottery searches.  Be sure to check back later this week for the Top 10 Pottery Searches for September.

Donna McGill


Want to learn how to Identify Fabulous Art Pottery?

Art Pottery Blog readers we are trying something new today.  Below you will find a guest post by Martin Codina of Fine Estate Liquidation.  You can learn more about Martin and business at the links below. 

Greg Myroth – Just Art Pottery

Start by Looking at Pottery in Books

Pottery was one of the first categories of collectibles that I fell in love with when I first started in the Estate Sales Business. Back then there were not the great online Art Pottery research, or sales sites we all have the luxury of accessing today.

We had to do it the old fashioned way, we had to read, and for me that meant buying every book I could find on the subject. Such books as Kovel's Antiques and Collectibles Price Guide, and the classic Kovel's American Art Pottery.

Art Pottery is Visual 

That's what first attracted me to Art Pottery, that it was beautiful, and later because certain pieces were also so valuable, I started selling some of my finds.

The way that I learned to identify valuable pottery was as simple as turning pages in a book. Every night before I went to sleep I would pick up one of the above books and I would simply look at the pictures.

I let my imagination filter my learning, I allowed the pictures to teach me, I didn't "Study" at first – I was more lulled by the images, more beckoned to learn more by the forms, shapes and colors. I did the same with the makers marks. I let them impress me…

And this is how I discovered my first Van Briggle 

Van Briggle Pottery Mark with Link follow to Available Van Briggle Pottery

Just to be clear the above photo is not of the Van Briggle piece I discovered so many years ago, it's of a piece available on this site, just click on the image and you will be taken to its listing…

Here's The Thing About Some Art Pottery

Not all of it is signed and easily identifiable

The Van Briggle piece that I discovered only had its makers mark, it did not have the Van Briggle name on it. Neither the dealer selling it or his staff knew what it was. But I did, because I had had my nightly lessons just flipping through pictures in a pottery book.

I learn by osmosis or through immersion

That's what I am suggesting to you as one of the best ways to learn how to identify Art Pottery. In order to find out about Art Pottery online, you first need to know what you're looking for – what is the right search term and so on.

With a book full of awesome pictures and images of well defined makers marks, you will have a much easier way of discovering what you like, and its "Value Context" in the world of Art Pottery collecting.  

Martin Codina

Fine Estate Sales

Ephraim Faience Pottery Photographs

Anigif We're so pleased our friends and fellow Ephraim Faience Pottery collectors, Steve and Rose, are allowing us to share with our readers these incredible photographs.  Notice the detail and depths of the colors.  The nuances are nothing short of exceptional and the way the colors become a part of the pottery is purely inspirational.  Enjoy!

Thinking of Upgrading Your Pottery Collection?

Most of us, as we're beginning to collect and appreciate art pottery, will begin our collections with smaller pieces.  Perhaps we started with a few McCoy cookie jars and realized somewhere along the way a real passion for American pottery.  We become more comfortable with recognizing true McCoy and know what to look for.  We learn how to differentiate between natural swirls in the glazes and attempts to repair damages and certainly can spot a fake almost instinctively.  Our confidence increases and we're far more comfortable with the process as a whole.

Now what?  If you're like me, you realized long ago that satisfaction that comes in finding a great buy on a piece you've patiently waited to come available.  But now that you're more confident in the process, maybe it's time to upgrade and expand your collection with a few


higher end pieces.  It can almost feel as though you're beginning the learning process again.  And in a way, you are.  Before, you might have taken a risk on a particular McCoy vase with the knowledge that even if you discovered it wasn't genuine, you still had a that perfect vase that completed your mantelpiece.  You hadn't invested too much money in it, so you still could rest assure it was something you truly wanted and if it wasn't authentic, it'd be a lesson learned in the process.  Sometimes, it's those kinds of risks or "leaps of faith" we take that provide the best learning curves.   But now, you've discovered a particular cookie jar that's going to cost significantly more than what you've spent in the past.  It's time to upgrade.

Take those lessons learned and apply them to this new-found McCoy pottery piece.  Use the same precautions you're now accustomed to.  It's important to be confident in your decision making process. 

Let's say you've carefully researched a McCoy Mammy Jar.  You know its value; you've carefully studied the colors and every detail and are confident that you can recognize a fake from an authentic jar.  And you know if you find one, it will become your biggest single pottery investment.  Oh, but it would be stunning in its place amongst your other McCoy jars.  This would be the perfect upgrade for your collection. 

A few tips to keep in mind before you sign the check:

· Ask the seller or dealer about his return policy

· Do your homework – research the height and weight of the true Mammy Jars and use that as a guide

· If you're on eBay, read the feedback – it can be your first best clue as to how the seller does business

· If the seller has ten of the same McCoy cookie jar that you know is becoming difficult to find, this could be a sign that this isn't the kind of upgrade you had in mind

If you're uncertain, have doubts or just a gut feeling that something's not quite right, take a step back and rethink it.  You want to upgrade, but you don't want to be taken.