I have totally fallen in love with the vibrant bright colors on Basaltine Willow. For those of you who don’t know my favorite color is a mix between lime green and olive green! It is not blue! Regardless, when I purchased my first piece of Basaltine willow I was so drawn to it. The first time I saw a piece was at my first willow convention. I knew I had to search out some for my collection.
I honestly thought for the longest time, these pieces only came in pieces you would display. I never knew they were made in pieces like plates. Who in their right mind would drag a knife or form across something this beautiful? Not me…I have managed to find 2 plates but am on the hunt for more! If you have any, I am your buyer!!!!
This vase is one of my favorites. It is over 13 inches tall and the pattern is simply so vibrant.
An up close picture shows you how detailed this is. The pattern itself had to be hand painted as different areas are much more raised than others. It is simply gorgeous.
The last piece I have is this gorgeous pitcher. It is about the same size as a can of coke! While it may be small, it is still stunning by itself. Now onto some history of the manufacturer!
Francis William Beardmore was born in Burslem on October 19th 1870. As a young man Frank was good friends with Arnold Bennett and in in April 1897 he married Bennett’s sister, Frances Gertrude (Sissie). Arnold Bennett went on to become a famous writer – and omelette. Bennett’s life and career have been comprehensively covered elsewhere. See this BBC article for example.
Frank and Sissie had four children: Francis Alan (1899-1977), Margaret (1901-1976), Roger (1904-1992) and George Cedric (1908-1979).
In 1901 Frank founded the firm of Frank Beardmore and Co. at the Sutherland Pottery in Fenton. In addition to tableware they produced Sutherland Art Ware, which has since become highly collectable, but Frank doesn’t seem to have been a very successful businessman.
Frank Beardmore and Co. was wound up in 1913. His son George wrote later that “he was a defeated man all the time I knew him, I mean after the Sutherland went bust, and the face he put on it for the rest of his life has been a living example to me.”
Frank and his family moved to 15 Prince’s Gardens Lane, Dowanhill, Glasgow where Frank became Works Manager for the Brittania Pottery. Later Frank worked in London as a representative for a number of pottery firms. The family lived at 22 Holmdene Avenue, Harrow. They called their house ‘Knype’; the name Arnold Bennett had given to Stoke in his ‘Five Towns’ novels.
Below is an add for some of Frank Beardmore’s wares. Now, take a look at that second picture…….holy cow I am on the hunt for that yellow candle stick! I am totally in love!
The link I placed above has some additional history, but now more than ever, my hunt will continue!
Happy Willowing folks!