Meissen Porcelain

Seeing Double? Not Necessarily...

We were recently on holiday in Germany, and while there were lucky enough to visit the Meissen Porcelain factory. Itís a fairly major tourist attraction in the town and is modern and well organised inside. The standard ticket price includes a series of demonstrations showing how porcelain pieces are made and decorated and unlimited time exploring Meissenís factory museum - all very interesting.

What was even more interesting, from the point of view of British ceramics, was that some pieces looked remarkably similar to English pieces from the same period - a very graphic illustration of how the same design trends swept through Europe at various times.

Take this, for example. On the left, a piece of Poole Freeform from the 1950s. On the right, a piece of Meissen from the same period. Although the porcelain body and glossy white glaze of the Meissen is somewhat different to the Pooleís earthenware body and matt glazes, the similarity in shape and pattern is unmistakeable:

Poole Pottery Freeform VaseMeissen Porcelain
Left: Poole Pottery Freeform vase. Right: Meissen Porcelain

How about this? Wedgwood Jasper Ware or Meissen? It turns out that in this case, Meissen actually did deliberately borrow the techniques that had been developed by Wedgwood to produce its own, very similar, wares.

Meissen Porcelain

This cup, saucer and sugar bowl is reminiscent of 1930s Carlton Ware, as the images below illustrate:

Carlton Ware Lily PatternMeissen Porcelain
Left: Carlton Ware embossed saucer. Right: Meissen Porcelain

Finally, this reminds me somewhat of designs by Susie Cooper and by various British potteries in the 1950s and 60s, donít you think?

Meissen Porcelain

If you find yourself in the vicinity of Meissen, we would certainly recommend a visit to both the town and the porcelain factory, which is within walking of the town centre. If you fancy taking some Meissen home with you, there is a well-stocked factory shop - but be warned, this is top quality porcelain, with prices to match!

Best wishes,

Perfect Pieces

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