|Description: A pitcher having a rounded body with a handle and wide spout. A small-figured pattern of blue transfer print appears on the body and also on the outside of the handle. A landscape and water scene appears on the pouring surface of the spout.
History: The pitcher is from Staffordshire, England, early nineteenth-century. The transfer printing process began in 1756 and was developed by John Sadler and Guy Green of Liverpool. It was then adopted by Josiah Wedgwood who used it on his ivory based 'Creamware'. Transfer printing is a process by which a pattern or design is etched onto a metal plate. The plate is then inked and the pattern is 'transferred' to a special tissue. The inked tissue is then laid onto the already bisque fired ceramic item, glazed, and fired again. Initially patterns were transferred to the ceramic items after glazing, but the ink often wore off, thus 'underprinting' was born. Transfer printing was developed in response to a call by English consumers for less expensive, mass produced wares. Customers wanted embellishment on their previously plain utilitarian wares. Initially the patterns were oriental in flavour, as Chinese blue was a favourite of the time. Prior to the development of transfer printing only the most affluent English could afford complete dinnerware sets as every dish had been carefully hand painted by an artisan. This was a labour intensive and costly process. Transfer printing allowed hundreds of sets of dinnerware to be produced in a fraction of the time it would have taken to hand paint these items, and for a fraction of the cost. REF: http://www.thepotteries.org/types/transfer_ware.html.