The very impressive decorative pattern on this Midwinter trio is “Kismet”, in production from 1968-1974. The design reflects so well the time in which it was designed – the late 1960s. This was a time of interest in all things Indian, spirituality, batik, psychedelia and The Beatles – amongst other things. It is such a joyful pattern.
The pattern was designed by Joti Bhowmik, who also designed a variation of this design in blue, purple, green and mustard called “Bengal” which was in production from 1968-1970. I haven’t been able to find out any more about Joti Bhowmik unfortunately, and cant find any other patterns them other than Kismet and Bengal.
The forms on which the designs appear are of course the very popular “fine shape” which was designed by the Marquis (David) Queensberry and Roy Midwinter in 1962, and introduced to the market a much stronger and durable ceramic with brighter colours, on a simpler and more modern, functional and streamlined profile.
I’ve never come across a dinnerware set quite like this one before – consisting of 2 very different styles and production techniques.
The maker is RIDGWAY (Staffordshire). The cups and bowls are hand thrown from a terracotta clay and glazed in a dark olive green matt glaze – A great shape too – they are wide at the bottom and narrower at the top.
They’re really quite chunky – and you would think they were handmade by a studio potter – except for the stamp on the bottom.
In almost complete contrast is the bone china plate-ware designed for this setting. It is bone china, with hand-painted greens and blues – but when its all together – the design simply works, with the green hues of the plate ware tying it all together. I think it is a fascinating experiment in tying together traditional plate ware design, with the developing “hand made” movement of the late 1960s.
The pattern is “ROMANY”. (not to be confused with Denby Romany and many other makers who used this name during the 1960’s)
The backstamp is from the 1960’s. Ridgway were quite a large group of Staffordshire Potteries produced many brands including – Colclough, Paladin, Portland, Adderley and Gainsborough potteries.
Of course Ridgway were also the producers of the now iconic “Homemaker” by Enid Seeney
Ridgway Romany back stamp
Wedgwood Pennine was a hugely popular oven-to-tableware dinner service in the 1960s and 1970s.
It has that very English “country rustic” look and feel about it – but unlike much other British dinnerware of the era was very tough and durable, and can still be found quite easily in excellent condition.
Pennine was produced from 1965-1971.
Wedgwood Pennine Cup & Saucer
Wedgwood Pennine Oatmeal or Soup Bowl
On the excellent Wedgwood Museum website I found the following history of the design…. Read more