|Salad bowl, Warwick Vase shape, Italian pattern, late 1800s|
|Salads, an addition to a dinner service c1870|
|Complete supper set in its mahogany tray, Tower pattern c1814|
Similarly items which made up smaller sets such as a supper set or a bachelor's set often have pieces missing and single part items from these sets are often misunderstood.
|Supper set section painted with Iris early 1800s|
(from Curtis's Botanical Magazine 1787)
- for which country it was destined
- from which period of history it came - Spode began manufacturing in in the 18th century and the factory closed in 2009
- which social status the purchaser held
- the whim of the purchaser
- the wealth of the purchaser
- fashion: did the purchaser follow old-fashioned or new styles?
|Catalogue page, c1902|
Old invoices and orders if they exist in an archive can help. And looking at collections in museums which occasionally have full services on show. Blogs by food historians are also useful.
However, I feel it is impossible to give a definitive answer to 'What's in my Spode dinner set?'
|Invoice for random pieces & repairs 1810|
(fascinating but no help at all for working out what is in a service)
|Dessert services 1800-1828|
|Composition of dessert services 1928|
|Dinner & tea wares in Naran pattern, earthenware 1938|
(Spot the beautiful lacquer table)
|Composition of earthenware dinner services 1928|
|Composition of china dinner services 1928|
|Teaware in pattern 2136 c1815|
|Composition of tea services 1928|