23 November, 2009

My Place and Yours: My Collection

Thank goodness for memes - they save a boring stretch of nothing to blog about! This week the theme over at Meet Me At Mike's "My Place and Yours" is My Collection, chosen by Kate at Fox's Lane. The brief is:

I want to see a photo or photos of what it is that you collect.
Then if you feel like it you could let us know what your collection rules are;
Does it have to be green? Does it have to be from another country? Does it have to be second hand or a gift? Does it have to be old or complete?...
What constitutes a collection for you? Is it more than three of the same thing? Is it rare things?
Is your collection ongoing or is it complete?
...what's your story?
Since I'm in the middle of marking these final exams and rediscovering all over again for the nth time that people who don't answer the question fully are doing themselves a serious disservice, I'll do my best with this one!

Although I have had various collections in the past, and also collected Poole with my huband Mat, my own personal collections are white vases and random pretty trios. I'll do the white vases this time around because I have more of them and they're very photogenic! A collection definitely has to be more than 2 items, and you have to mean to get more - unless you have everything (or run out of money or space) and then you have completed your collection. I haven't done either of those so it's still a work in progress, although slower these days.


I have no idea if there is a technical name for white-glazed earthenware but I generally think of it as "the white stuff". I started collecting it about 10 years ago before it got popular. I'd like to emphasise that last point because firstly it's true, and secondly it explains why I have trouble paying some of the prices asked for it now, and thirdly it makes me sound all cool and ahead of the pack. :P I don't have any hard and fast rules on what I'll get, except that it has to be white, I have to really like the shape and it has to be in reasonable condition. I don't mind a bit of staining or crazing but too much ruins the aesthetic effect, if not its functionality. I don't care who the maker is, although the two main companies by far are Crown Lyn and Sylvac.


As for why these particular vases I can't really say for sure. I think its tied up in a feeling of gentile tranquility they give me, of thoughtful flower arrangements and house-proud women showing off their gardening skills. It's afternoon tea, ladies a plate, frocks and men with hats. I also like the sculptural effect that some of them have and the way the light plays across the designs. They're like a living black and white photograph.

I'm definitely still collecting but I'm more picky now I think and as I said, they're much more collectible and expensive now so harder to come across in dusty old antique shops. Not that there are many of those around any more, Trade Me and Ebay have taken care of that. :( I can see from this photo that I need a couple taller vases, and maybe a few smaller ones as well. Time to start haunting Trade Me again perhaps!

I do use them as often as I can, although most of them are really too big for our little house and I have no idea how to arrange flowers in them! The most-used ones are the small squareish ones, the faux-bamboo one, and the urn. I don't like the urn so much anymore as it's somewhat funereal, but it's a good size for roses. I also try and use the waterlily one (Crown Lyn knock off of a Suzie Cooper design. Or some famous woman potter anyways) but it's big and takes a lot of flowers! I need to go out and pick some of our beautiful spring roses and fill some up, that would be worth a photo!


  1. I love your white vases. I've been resisting the temptation to buy them when I see them but seeing yours in all their white glory... maybe I should!! I like the way that as collectors, we actually collect the stories rather than just the objects just like you said.

  2. They look so nice grouped together like that! A lovely collection!!

  3. That's a nice range of texture in there, too. Lovely collection, indeed!!

  4. Nice white collection you have there, I like that flat long one (descriptive, huh?!). Thanks for visiting my place too. Nice to meet you!

  5. Wow, they are photogenic aren't they?! A lovely collection of white stuff indeed.

  6. OH they are terrific! If I saw one somewhere I would most likely just barely give it a second glance. Seeing them like that makes me want to get some!
    I think the urn one is quite stunning. It is a good size for a bunch of freshly picked roses!
    To put flowers in, I saw a great tip on putting them in vases. Start off with 2. Put them opposite each other & cross the stems. Grab another 2. Put them at the cross points of the other 2 & again poke the stems through all the others so they are pretty much all stuck. With these 4 flowers they are your base, & you can then poke all the rest of your flowers in around these stems & they should stay quite steady & nicely displayed once you have them as you want. I tried it & it really works!
    Of course that is for bigger vases. Not sure about the short ones you have but they are very pretty all the same! I'll shut up now... lol

  7. This is a beautiful collection, very impressive all together. I also have trouble with urn shapes. When using my urn vases I have ivy or periwinkle or anything that trail down to off set the funerealness.

  8. You've totally got 'the white stuff' going on... and that kitty is a bit confused at all those bowls and no Whiskas, I think! Thanks for showing us your lovely things this week! They look gorgeous all together like that, don't they?!

  9. Oh my - these are beautiful! My mum has one similar somewhere. I'm going to go find it and steal it and I'm afraid its all your fault!

  10. I'm absolutely drooling over your collection...

  11. These are just lovely! I have an urn, but I don't think of it as funereal - it's a different design to yours - I find it's great for long stemmed lilies and hydrangeas in summer. Great collection!



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