Saturday, August 11, 2012

Collecting Creamware

I am addicted to antique pottery from the 18th - 19th century!! From white ironstone to majolica to creamware, I really enjoy buying and selling them, and stashing a few away.....for me! :-)

Shortly after discovering white ironstone I also became interested in creamware, a form of opaque earthenware started in the 1750s. Perfected in England, it was also copied throughout Europe. Rorstrand produced fine examples for the many manor homes in Sweden, while Creil became the first factory to produce creamware in France.  

Creamware can be found in many colors, various glazes and transfer printed designs, but it is the monochromatic "off white" form I prefer. I love how contemporary these unadorned, neutral pieces look. 
 On our Swedish Gustavian painted secretary is a trio of English oval chestnut baskets with their undertrays. Left: "woven" basket with reticulated rim by Neale. Center: Wedgwood basket with uplift handles and arcaded rim. Right: Spode basket with scalloped rim, dolphin heads and fretwork.
 
 Various creamware pieces including a candy dish with braided handles and reticulated rim.
 As with our other collections, I like displaying "en masse" for impact. Art, decorating and garden books with creamware in the library. The 3 large English banded tubs are footbaths (would have been part of chamber sets).
 The sconces are made from architectural elements. I designed the 6 bookcases around them.
 Instead of an empty black hole, I stuck some pods in this tea caddy which is missing its lid :( In front is a pair of rare French Empire knife rests. The soup tureen is by Wedgwood. The large French platter has damage, which I don't mind.
 Top row - Left: footed bowl with side masks / faces. Center: covered meat dish with flower finial. Right: fruit stand with egg cups in front.
     In this French Directoire (Ca. 1790) painted vitrine cabinet is a collection of early 20th cen French creamware pieces.

86 comments:

  1. Gorgeous Loi! I always feel like I have participated in a fine antiquities seminar after your post. Interesting to see your beautiful pieces in the library...I don't think I could do that because my china is rather pedestrian in comparison! (since its only 25 year old Wedgewood;) What you have done creates an art gallery and it's ovely!xob

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  2. Hi Loi,
    You are such a teacher! We have some creamware from my grandmothers (English ) and my mother has old creamware but I never knew the intended uses of many of the pieces, I love the chestnut baskets and the foot baths.

    What a lovely collection you have created and your displays are inspired and elegant. Your house photographs so beautifully, the natural light is really pretty. The bookcases are just perfectly designed. I really want a foot bath, going to keep in mind when antiquing. Great post as usual!

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  3. Loi, what a beautiful collection. I love the creamware - and all the more charming in that they are very old pieces with real provenance. But what captivates me the most is the lines of the pieces - such wonderful elegant lines (why don't people make things like this any more?!!) - each piece is beautiful to behold, which to me is the real measure of value! :D

    Your vignettes are gorgeous - what an eye you have.

    xo Terri

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  4. Thank you for sharing yet another of your impeccably curated collections! Just love these creamware pieces and how you have displayed them in your beautiful home. Another wonderful post!! :) Laura

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  5. I agree with Laura, what a treat to see another one of your wonderful collections, and so beautifully displayed! My mother loved creamware, a trait she passed along to me.

    Kat

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  6. Love your creamware, which has generally been out of my budget, but I did manage to collect some lovely blanc de chine while I lived in Hong Kong. I have it displayed atop a dark lacquer tansu for contrast. This beautiful post leaves me wanting more!

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  7. I am nuts for creamware but have not managed to collect any. I have loads of inherited antique china and I often use new white pieces to fill in the serving gaps. The problem is that new stuff isn't nearly as interesting as old creamware. Beautiful collection, Loi!

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  8. I couldn't agree more Loi. I get to live with a few of the pieces before selling them and I too manage to hide away a few for myself. Maybe I will now get around to photographing some of them!
    Have a wonderful weekend...I am off to the brocante.
    Simone

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  9. ...and your other readers are right....great explanation of the pieces. I love learning through your eye for detail.

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  10. Absolutely stunning Loi!! I would give anything to have an amazing collection of authentic creamware... someday! My first goal is to get to your store;)
    You're posts make me so happy!

    Best wishes my friend!

    Des

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  11. Loi, your collections are priceless and your displays are magnificent! You are a Genius ! I so love looking and reading your posts. Thanks, Patty

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  12. Loi your images are so beautiful they are making my eyes water. I covet fine china and have been to the Wedgwood and Spode factories in the English midlands many times. You have staged the pieces superbly allowing their classic beauty to shine amongst your wonderful collection of books and fine furniture. Yours is definitely the very best of the modern classical interior - you are a master.

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  13. What a wonderful collection you have and so beautifully displayed. I am saving these pictures for inspiration. Keep well, Sharon

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  14. Simply stunning, dear Loi...what beauty!
    I love the creamware and have a few pieces, but you have given me wonderful new ideas on how to display it..thank you, I am inspired!
    So kind of you to visit :)
    Yes, Elizabeth is a rare jewel, and I'm honored to call her a friend...
    Wishing you a splendid Sunday!
    xoxo,
    - Irina

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  15. Your dedication is an inspiration. The bookcases are a triumph for displaying your creamware. The the book along the top line of the secretary is a lovely Loi touch and the braided handle on that candy dish is truly beautiful.

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  16. Ah techinical difficulties so I think my previous comment did not save... to be short I previously said that I do love creamware but even more I love that green secretary. I remember when I first saw it published, love love love it.

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  17. Dear Loi,
    I like to think of myself as a bit of an antique dealen but you put me to shame :-). Your choices are superb!
    Di
    xxxxxx

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  18. What a treat to wake up to your stunning home! I've always liked creamware but was always afraid it was delicate and I was afraid of breaking it, I'm a klutz. Love seeing the furniture in your home your green secretary and French cabinet are wonderful. Now that trunk in front of your bookcase, is that wooden?

    Enjoy your Sunday Loi!
    XX
    Debra~

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    1. Debra - It is a vellum trunk from Northern China....originally for storing fur coats, hats, silks, etc. Thanks! Loi

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  19. A beautiful collection - and displayed on such stunning furniture! I can now confidently show my husband that my seven off-white French tureens and meagre collection of six Constance Spry planters are a mere drop in the ocean compared to how large I'd like my collection to grow!)
    Stunning and an inspiration as always.
    Enjoy your Sunday - will you be watching the Olympics closing ceremony?
    Paula xxx

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    1. Thanks, Paula! We have recorded the closing ceremony....watching it tomorrow :-)

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  20. Oh my, what beautiful pieces of creamware you have, and your photos show them off so well. I love the detail and the delicacy of many of the pieces you have. Simply gorgeous!
    Claudia

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  21. What a beautiful collection and display! So much nicer then 'just' a bookcase with books only!
    Thanks for sharing!

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  22. What a beautiful collection you have. I love how you displayed your cream ware among the books.. I am always inspired after visiting your blog.

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  23. Hi Loi - The green secretary really highlights the three creamware pieces in the first photo--just beautiful! Can you tell us more about the medallion on the wall in that photo? It is absolutely striking. Your creamware collection is extensive and so varied. Thanks for sharing it with us. I am always on the lookout for "those" octagonal shaped creamware plates and soup plates, but they seem to be scarce.

    Happy Sunday,
    Deborah

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    1. I'm so glad you asked about the medallion, Deborah. One of my favorite pieces! It is a plaster relief called "Night." The original marble piece (Ca. 1815), in Copenhagen, was carved by the Danish sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen. The companion piece (which I don't have) is "Day." Mine is a Ca. 1890 copy made for a Boston building. Thanks! Loi

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  24. A very beautiful collection. I adore the bowl resting on The New Eighteenth Century Style book!

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  25. Hi Loi,

    Your collection is gorgeous - and impressive. I love the octagonal pieces in the last photo. And your photography is beautiful as always.

    xo,
    Phyllis

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  26. There is nothing more to say except to repeat what everyone else has said. Your images are beautiful, your displays inspired and your furniture a joy to see. Thank you for all of it.
    Best...Victoria

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  27. Hello Loi, I am impressed by the amount of variety you have assembled within this simple white ware. I think my favorites are the foot-baths, although I could spend hours exploring the whole collection. Like Ann, I am envious of the green secretary. I also like those sconces--were they once part of an iron cresting?
    --Road to Parnassus

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    1. Thanks, Parnassus. The iron pieces were most likely cut from a gate or balcony guard. Cheers, L

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  28. Your creamware collection is beautiful Loi! .. and perfectly displayed I might add! I like the detail on the various handles and rims. Building your library around the sconces? Genius and placing the creamware along side the design and garden books DOES create impact. I love it! Always enjoy seeing glimpses of your beautiful home :)

    Enjoy your day!

    leslie

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  29. Loi, This is my favorite blog post of the week. You have shown us not only beautiful creamware, but how to display it tastefully and elegantly. I love your understated elegant design aesthetics. Great post, one that everyone should study, Have a great week,
    Kathysue

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  30. Beautiful and beautifully displayed. I've been collecting brown and white transferware for years but the creamware is stunning!
    Lisa in Charlottesville, VA

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  31. I adore the fact that you designed the bookcases around the sconces. How clever. Your collection is stunning. The way it is displayed is very natural, unpretentious. I also love the simplicity of the pieces below the natural wood carved ribbon art. Creams, white and natural barn grey have become my favorite decorating colors. I do think they sooth the soul as well. Lovely post.

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  32. Hi Loi, This post transports me to heaven. I'm in awe of your displays and vignettes. I've collected transferware (blue and red), but the creamware is inspiring me. Of course, the neoclassical furniture is perfection. --Thanks. Mary

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  33. oh i just love your collection. i personally love ironstone, and sport my grandmother's set for everday eating. cant believe its held up for every day use for 30 + years. I love majolica too. And PS - your topiaries are darling ! Do you ever sell any of your creations at the store??

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  34. Love your Library Loi! I share your love of design books too:) Your antique french cabinet is stunning!
    I have such a weakness for French pieces. I'm going to France in a few weeks and can't wait to shop the antique fairs and shops. Your creamware collection is beautiful and I appreciate your expertise too:) I inherited some antique swedish plates (my mother in law was Swedish) and when paired with my collections of Match pewter and Annie Glass, create such a beautiful combination for table or display.
    Have a great weekend,
    Sarah

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  35. stumbled upon a beautiful antique creamware tureen over the weekend in Charleston, SC. It has been haunting me...after seeing this post, confirmation I should have purchased it. My favorite non-color color has always been cream ha! Love your palette...timeless

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  36. Loi,
    Your library is very beautiful and the sconces are great! Good idea to design the bookcase around the sconces!
    Me too I love creamware! I always use creamware dishes if I have to set my table fot guests!
    Your creamware pieces are very beautiful! You have a wonderful eye for things of beauty!
    Happy Sunday!
    xx
    Greet

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  37. I discovered your blog a few weeks ago, Loi, and like everything else you do, it's perfect! I had such fun looking through all your past posts, and can't wait to see what visual treat you come up with next. I would love to start a collection of creamware - perhaps on my visit to the shop! Hope you and Tom are well.

    xx
    Beth

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    1. Thank you, Beth! I really appreciate you reading my blog. Are you in the Washington, DC area? Hope you can visit one day :-)
      Loi

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  38. Loi-
    I LOVE this post! I have recently researched Creil pieces, and it is amazing what is out there. I am happy to learn that the beautiful desk is yours. I admire it everywhere I see it. Thank you for sharing your knowledge on these beautiful pieces.
    Happy Sunday.
    Teresa
    xoxo

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  39. Hi Loi! Love seeing all your beautiful pottery!! that's a wonderful addiction :) I don't have any creamware- yet! I love your bookcases and so neat you designed the bookcases around them. Love everything.
    Have a great week!
    Robin

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  40. Loi~your collection (addiction) is addicting to look at! Just so beautiful as always! I hope you are having a very wonderful day!

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  41. Love reading your passion about creamware. You have displayed it so beautiful! Love the bookcase.

    Wishing you a lovely evening.
    xoxo Rozmeen

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  42. Loi,
    Your antiques are absolutely stunning! As is your collection of creamware, but what I love is the fact that your bookcase looks fantastic and not all cluttery (is that a word?!?) looking. Perfectly edited and color coded! I may reconsider open bookcases if they look like these!! Great post!

    Have a wonderful Sunday!

    Cindy

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  43. As 'addictions' go...this is a beautiful one to have!! I'm especially drawn to the combination of the books and the gorgeous creamware plates and vessels. Love to scan each shelf and table top and take in, the wonderful ways in which they are displayed. Enjoyed the history lesson too, thank you! So many beautiful pieces.
    Monica

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  44. How utterly beautiful these images are. And the creamware is stunning. I am so glad to have finally come visit. I'm here to stay :)

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  45. As usual.... a visual FEAST. As well as a few professorial tips to tuck away for future use :) I adore creamware ( of course I never met a dish I didn't like.)And at least your addiction lends beauty to your surroundings. The styling of your bookcases is superb. And I love those sconces. Maybe later you can tell us more about that green desk....it's a beauty. I better stop for now, I'm drooling on my keyboard.

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  46. Great post as always! I too am a lover of creamware and your collection is beautiful. I love how you use your collections in unexpected places. Most people would only use dishes in the kitchen area of their home but you have shown how they can be used anywhere and look stunning.

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  47. oh Loi! you're home and your collections are STUNNING!!! So much beauty in this post. The Swedish secretary is gorgeous but I want that angel so badly - what is the material? is it marble/alabaster :) ?? I am in love with her. I love all your cream ware but I adore your soup toureens and want to start a collection, I just find them to be such complete balanced pieces - they just have perfect proportions. Your library design is superb, the width between the shelves so perfect for your amazing wall lights (made from architectural elements!!). Then what a finishing photo - bang! an amazing glazed cabinet with cleverly black painted interior which showcases your creamware to perfection! (I'd like to copy that idea for the shop - do you mind???) what a talent you are Loi!

    Sharon
    xxxx

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  48. WOW! I love your collection. Have you heard of Provvista designs.. they make beautiful cream plates from Italy.... looks like it might be your style too!

    Love reading your blog.

    ~Jamie Evelyn

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  49. Every time a new Tone on Tone post pops up in my in box (amongst all of the "so-and-so repinned three of your pins" -lol), I am brimming with anticipation, because I know that its going to be a feast for the eyes, like none other. I didn't know it, but I'm obsessed with cream ware too! :) best ~ Laurel

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  50. i don't collect many things but i have hung on to white pottery and ironstone and love the effect when they are massed. what a gorgeous library, loi.

    smiles.

    michele

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  51. Hi Loi,
    How Stunning!! What a beautiful collection. I adore the library. I am completely inspired by your styling.
    Thank you for sharing.
    Jess x

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  52. Agreed. Gorgeous. Loving it displayed amongst the books!! xo

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  53. Hello Loi, Your creamware collection is very handsome and I like your design for the bookcases, particularly the detailing of the top moulding. I continually enjoy how tailored your taste is, and just wish I were close enough to visit your shop regularly. I imagine it must sometimes be difficult to decide what goes into the shop and what stays at home!

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  54. Dear Loi, Once again you delivered. Your posts are so wonderful and photographed perfectly. I love your bookcases, the sconces and your styling. What is that phenomenal hanging bas relief woman in your collage of pictures? I want it! I hope you're doing well. I am remiss that our days have not brought us together more often. Are you going to Lucketts anytime soon, or this fall? We can meet there. Perhaps we'll come your way later in September. Seems our weekends are all spoken for Bethany and I until then. Have a wonderful week.
    Love, Nancy

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  55. I love coming to your beautifully curated home and look so forward to each new post.
    Thank you for sharing such beauty and knowledge.
    Love,
    Terri

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  56. So much beauty as always, Loi. Your posts always amaze me. Today I'm blown away by your styling skills. Happy Monday!

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  57. Such a gorgeous collection. I'm just beginning mine. You inspire me!

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  58. Love your collection here, Loi. I collect creamware too. It all started when I did a butler's pantry in a showhouse in 2008. I became addicted to e-bay, building my collection of the perfect soup tureens, pitchers, and stacks of plates. I love how you've used them throughout all your bookcases. They are so sculptural and being all a cream color, one can really appreciate the shapes and details.

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  59. Loi thank you so much for sharing your collection!

    The lustre of the creamware is gorgeous on your shelves.

    xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karena
    2012 Artists Series featuring Harrison Howard

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  60. Wow, Loi, the creamware is stunning! Love the display on your shelves and on the secretary is perfection...dying for that painted piece...so, so gorgeous!!

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  61. Loi, this is my favorite post yet! I can't believe I'm just now getting to see it! Creamware is my absolute love and something I struggle with "hoarding" from my shop! LOL! I found myself taking down my black and white Mulberry platters and replacing them with incredible large platters of Creamware that I had "hidden" a while back as a form of therapy today after moving Miller to Auburn! I am most definitely bookmarking and pinning this post as I have many customers that want to know more of a history behind creamware. I wish you could be a keynote speaker at Mulberry one day! Much love and many thanks for sharing such wonderful info! Hope you have a great week!

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  62. Hi Loi,
    Your creamware looks fantastic in all your images, but especially but especially in the French Directoire. Each table scape and room are serene, but this is the one I love best. As always, thanks for all your inspiration and for sharing your home with your faithful reader.
    Cheers,
    b

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  63. Hi Loi,

    Well hello - the most inspirational post and beautiful styling ever! Loi, your collections, your wonderful antiques - they way you put it all togheter - I am so impressed. (And that green Swedish secretary - come to Mama! Is it for sale?).

    Very, very nice Loi.

    I am back in blog land after a looong time off. Good to be back here.

    Hugs/Kram!

    Mon

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  64. My goodness. Creamware crack right there....and displayed like an Olympic stylist!

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  65. I share your love of creamware (especially Leedsware and Belleek) and it does seem to look at home anywhere. Another beautiful post thank you.

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  66. As always, Loi, a stunning collection and a brilliant post.
    Thank you!
    The creamware is beautiful and has been displayed to perfection.
    Hope you have a lovely week,
    Lizx

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  67. Dear Loi,

    I, too, would love to know more about the beautiful green secretary. It's one of my favorite pieces from your collection.

    Berta

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    1. Hi, Berta - Thanks for your visit and question. The Swedish late Gustavian secretary is from the early 19th cen (1800-20). Very Neoclassical with the Apollo masks / faces on the sides, fluted pilasters and arcades / arches. I love its original green painted surface. We've had this secretary many years.
      Loi

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  68. What a brilliant eye you have Loi - your choices and the details of your displays are impeccable.

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  69. Simply stunning!
    Loi, your artistic flair and exquisite attention to detail has showcased these elegant pieces beautifully. Looking forward to future posts!

    Fiona x

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  70. Ohhh thanks for sharing so much loveliness Loi! Your posts are a party! Let's party, yay!

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  71. Loi,
    I had to reread to be sure I wasn't looking at the pages of my favorite shelter magazine! Your collection is stunning and heartfelt. I love making soft boiled eggs for our family, so am always on the hunt for great egg cups. Love yours. And, the sconces you worked around! :)

    Love how you color code your books...couldn't help but notice. And, the architectural elements on your walls. Adore!

    xoxo Elizabeth

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  72. Loi, I had just commented on a painting I have by a wonderful lady, Mary Virginia Fuller, and I saw you mention her somewhere. Please share with me if you do. I cherish mine. Mrs. fuller was such a wonderful lady. I was turned loose in her attic some 30 something years ago to chose mine.
    Teresa
    xoxo

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  73. My mistake, Loi. It had your name in the post, but I was the one with the panting, lol.
    Teresa

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  74. Always wonderful to see your kind messages, dear Loi...thank you!
    Love going through your beautiful and calming images again...your design always inspires me to improve my space.
    A splendid weekend to you!
    xoxo,
    - Irina

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  75. Loi, I see why you're addicted. I want to be addicted to creamware too. Do tell: how would a 30-ish person begin a collection like yours? I see a new hobby in my future. ;)

    Keri

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  76. This post is absolutely gorgeous...Thanks a lot...I now have a new obsession...Have always liked creamware, but you have displayed it in a whole new light. XO, Mona

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  77. Wow you have a wonderful collection of Antique creamware. I also have collected Neoclassical pieces from the late 18th century early 19th century.

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  78. Tnis is just beautiful!! You are so inspirational!! Xoxo, K

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  79. I am one of your readers who hac never left a comment, but the beautiful creamware and your stunning bookcases and sconces compelled me to write. I collect blue and white export porcelain, but I might have to begin a creamware one, too! I also love the softness of the color of your bookcases....can you share what it is?

    Thank you,
    Nancy W.
    Nhw1107@gmail.com

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  80. What an amazing post.. I've just recently discovered creamware and I'm pretty obsessed. So happy to have found this post. I recognize your name as a frequent commenter, and I'm thrilled to put a face with the name!
    What a wonderful post!
    XO
    Jan

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Many thanks for your visit and comment. If you have a question, let me know and I will respond here. Loi