B – Bone China

Welcome to letter B and to this year’s Theme:

 The Glories of Tea With Stepheny


Tuscan Vintage Tea Cup & Saucer Gold Border

The main difference between porcelain and fine bone china is the inclusion of up to 50 percent bone ash in the porcelain mixture that makes up bone china. China is also typically fired at a lower temperature than porcelain, which is double-fired at very high temperatures. Bone china has a warmer off-white color than porcelain. The words bone china are often marked on the underside of a piece of bone china. Porcelain looks bright white to the naked eye and it is more durable and weighty when compared to bone china. Recognizing the difference between bone china and porcelain is all about the ingredients in the ceramic mixture and its firing process. The first firm to develop a reliable recipe was Spode in 1799. It is specifically an English development. Germany, France and the rest of Europe stuck to their older, more traditional Chinese porcelain recipes (no animal bone).

Some people bet on a horse because they like the name or think the horse is pretty. In collecting china, you may feel the same way. As long as it is pretty, that’s what matters. To others, the manufacturer of china is as important as the pattern. There is a way to verify the authenticity of a piece of bone china. Generally, bone china is registered by the manufacturer and you can find its trademark, number, and pattern name under each piece. Over time these can become difficult to read.  If you hold a piece of bone china up to a light and place your hand behind it, you should be able to see your fingers through it.

Select one of these lovely cups and let’s pour some Lady Gray and enjoy it.

Vintage English SHELLEY Fine Bone China Tea Cup & Saucer

Vintage Tuscan Fine Bone China Tea Cup and Saucer, Naples …

Antique Aynsley bone china tea cup set red

Vintage Shelley Violets Fine Bone China Tea Cup by …

Elizabethan Fine Bone China Tea Cup and Saucer Green Gold


About Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin grew up in Evanston, IL. and is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. She is an author of two novels: The Greening of a Heart and Facing East. She lives, writes and gardens in NC. Visit her: Stephenyhoughtlin.com
This entry was posted in AtoZ Blog Challenge -2020 and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to B – Bone China

  1. jazzfeathers says:

    This is so fascinating. I didnt’ know any of it.
    Let me se. I think I’ll choose the green cup. I love the red one too, but the green is mroe vibrant.
    Thansk so much for sharing. I’m already loving your chalelnge.

    The Old Shelter – Living the Twenties

  2. eschudel says:

    The tea cup really does make the tea!

  3. scr4pl80 says:

    Very interesting. My favorites are the first and second, although the purple flowered one is pretty too.

  4. Kathe W. says:

    Years ago my mother gave me a Spode luncheon set complete with tea cups. I loved it but never used it as I was afraid it would get damaged. So there it sat in the cupboard year after year. When we sold our home I asked the new owners who were from Ireland and Scotland if they would like it. YES! they said so I gave it away rather than just have them sit in a cupboard. Remembering this today I now wish I kept them and used them.

  5. I love them all, but the violet one is my favorite. Can’t wait to see the spring violets growing in lawns – any week now.

  6. Jenny says:

    Such beautiful teacups! I have a hard time picking a favorite. Maybe the green and gold.
    The field below doesn’t recognize my URL, but it is http://www.jensunwriter.com
    Happy A to Z!

  7. Tarkabarka says:

    What a fun theme! And all of those images are beautiful… Also, I never knew there was a difference between china and porcelain! They don’t teach that in English class…

  8. The violets remind me of a jam dish in our family. That would have been useful for afternoon tea.

  9. Are these from your collection? They’re lovely, regardless. It’s only day 2, and I’ve learned so much: yesterday I learned where the term “high tea” comes from, and today I learned about porcelain and bone china. This is so much fun!

  10. noelleg44 says:

    Beautiful cups! Part of the lovely ‘having tea’ experience.

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