Hey everyone - just a quick note that we are going to try to archive the Potteries of California blog as static html pages shortly. Was meaning to do this 2+ years ago, because we’ve stopped updating. We may keep the archived pages around for awhile, but eventually may completely get rid of it. As with many of the blog sites we’ve started, there is just no incentive (personally and monetarily) to continue - online “content” has moved on, and so we will too.

Thank you for the nice messages we received, great contacts we’ve made, and for all the words of encouragement.


More Hildred Pieces

Monday April 15, 2013 | leave a comment

Hildred Reents Bird - Potteries of California

After not finding any Hildred Reents pieces in quite awhile, we came across two in short succession. One was the quail above that we’d already found previously, spotted at a Goodwill. I ended up not buying it because it had damage to the top of head, and plus we’d already found this one. An interesting thing is that we also saw a couple smaller baby birds that may have been Hildred’s bundled together in a bag. Those weren’t marked, however, and I think at least one was a Roselane piece that Hildred didn’t do. They were also all damaged, or I would’ve taken a chance and got them.

Hildred Reents Rabbit - Potteries of California

The other piece we came across was at a flea market. This is a rabbit done by Hildred Reents - I’ve seen it before because her daughter had shared a photo of one previously with us. Cute little fellow.

Hildred Reents Rabbit - Potteries of California

I hadn’t seen it in perrson, so I wasn’t sure but when I picked it up to check the bottom the mark was right there. I think some of her work may go undetected because she often signed with just her first name.

Sascha Brastoff Full Signature Plate

Tuesday August 28, 2012 |

Sascha Brastoff Plate - Potteries of California

I came across a very cool Sascha Brastoff plate the other day. This nice leaf pattern isn’t one I’ve seen before, and I’m uncertain if it’s from a regular issue pattern or line. What makes the plate even more interesting is that it’s fully signed.

Sascha Brastoff Plate - Potteries of California

This is the first time I’ve found one with a full signature. It’s generally accepted that a full signature indicates that Brastoff himself worked on the item. Those with his rooster stamp or just “Sascha B.” were worked on by his craftsmen and employees. I don’t have enough information on just how many of these full signature items there are compared to the standard releases, but it’s gotta be quite a bit less. If anyone happens to know more about them, please leave a comment.

Another quick note: I’d mentioned we’ve begun to “divest” ourselves of quite a bit of our California pottery through our vintage store, A La Modern. Well, we’ve sort of switched to selling many of those pieces through Ebay instead because there’s a wider audience for California pottery. If you’re interested in keeping up with the items, we have a store on Ebay now. You’ll probably see many of the items from this site going up there eventually - some of our tastes and interests have changed, so we decided to make a little room for other things.

We’ll continue to update this site sporadically, with new finds, companies, information and photos as we get them. We may also be moving the site to another platform soon, so if you see that it’s down that would be the reason why.

Howard Pierce Collection

Wednesday May 9, 2012 | 2 comments

A quickie post - we’re still in the midst of unpacking boxes and boxes of things after we moved. Since I had almost all the Howard Pierce porcelain items in one place, I decided to take a quick photo of them in case they get separated. I think we’ll keeping most of the Pierce, but I wanted a group picture just in case.

Howard Pierce Collection - Potteries of California

Not shown are a goldleaf Madonna and Child figurine that we got recently, as well as a weird pink and green Howard Pierce dinnerware bowl - I think those are fairly uncommon. That particular bowl looks just like a William Manker piece.

The funniest thing - today when sharing this group photo, I mentioned to a bunch of online folks that I hadn’t found any Howard Pierce pieces in such a long time. Then I dropped by the thrift and found two of his Angelfish! Kind of funny how that thrifting karma works sometimes…

Le Richeaux Ashtray

Wednesday April 25, 2012 |

Le Richeaux - Potteries of California

Picked up an interesting ashtray marked “Le Richeaux” the other day. I remembered the name was a moniker that Marc Bellaire used at one time. This is the second time I’ve seen one of these pieces, the other time it was also an ashtray but I didn’t pick it up due to the damage.

The look of this piece is “sort of” like something Bellaire would do. However, keep in mind that Bellaire was doing designs under this name for the Harper Pottery (see Chipman’s Encyclopedia). And eventually, Harper sold the line and name to La Mirada for use. I’m unclear whether La Mirada then ONLY released the designs they bought, or if they created original items to be released under the Richeaux name. If it’s the latter, then this may not actually be a Bellaire design.

I’ve been neglecting PoC lately, it’s just a lot of work to keep adding companies and posts with our other sites being busy too. I’ve been trying to block off a week or two so I can work exclusively on adding quite a few remaining California potteries to the mix - there’s definitely still no shortage of companies to talk about! Also sorry, I probably won’t be answering the contact form too frequently - we just get too many enquiries to keep up lately.

Barbara Willis 1917-2011

Thursday September 15, 2011 | 1 comment

We were saddened to learn of Barbara Willis’s passing today. She was one of the greats, and while we only had a few of her pieces (and only the less valuable decaled ones), what mattered is that she was such an important and influential potter in the California pottery scene.

We actually got a chance to meet with her at the Los Angeles Pottery show 2 years ago, and she signed her book for us as seen in the photo above. The LA Times wrote up a detailed obituary for her as well.

I almost don’t feel right about saying this - but I wonder how prices for her work will be affected after her passing. Barbara Willis’s pottery was already extremely collectible, and very difficult to find “in the wild”. I’ve never come across one in thrifts - only at flea markets and antique stores.

Do you have an interesting story about Barbara Willis? If so, please leave a comment - we’d love to hear it.

Possible Bauer Rebekah Vase

Thursday July 21, 2011 | 1 comment

Hey everyone - sorry for the hiatus on posts. Pretty much all of our time and attention has gone into the A La Modern shop lately. We do come across some great California pottery in our thrifting and estate sale forays. One of the most interesting items we picked up was this fantastic drip glaze handled vase.

Bauer Rebekah - Potteries of California

We wrote up more of the story on this item on the A La Modern blog. Basically, my thought was that this vase looked an awful lot like a Rebekah vase from Bauer, made by Matt Carlton.

I still don’t know for sure. The glaze is what threw me off the most. I actually did think it might be Panama Pottery, Pacific or Gladding instead. In particular, I was reminded of some of the earlier multicolor-glaze Pacific items. However, when looking at photos, the glaze didn’t seem to be like those either. It did have some characteristics of Panama, but the shape was almost a dead-ringer for Bauer Rebekah.

Back of Vase - Potteries of California

The bottom is unmarked, and mostly unglazed. There seems to be a marking of “35″ on the bottom in pencil… I was wondering if that perhaps was the date or the price (in cents!). If you happen to have an idea on whether or not this could be Bauer, I’d be interested in hearing your opinion.


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