Carlton Ware's PERSIAN patternToday is the beginning of the Persian New Year or Nowruz. It signifies the onset of Spring and marks the Equinox.
What better time is there to feature Carlton Ware's PERSIAN pattern?
Notice the difference between the cobalt blue background on the ginger jar and the Powder Blue ground on the vase. Powder Blue has a distinct mottled effect.
The main pattern depicts a pavilion in an exotic garden. In the centre of the pavilion, a sultan sits cross-legged on a peacock throne. On the carpet before him, two musicians play their instruments and two standing figures ply bowls of fruits. Two wading birds and a stag populate the foreground.
The pattern, by Enoch Boulton, is likely to have been inspired or perhaps copied from a Persian manuscript. Below are two examples with similar themes.
Smaller ElementsThere are several smaller elements to the pattern. These were needed so that the pattern could be used on a wide range of shapes, large or small. Below is a VELOX bowl with one such on a Powder Blue ground.
Another smaller element is shown on the lid of the cigarette box on the right. This is has an iridescent petrol blue lustre ground.
All of these elements were engraved onto one large copper plate and when printed onto a special tissue paper were cut up into separate sections for use.
For underglaze decorations, the pattern was first printed in "smoke", a pale grey colour, onto the white biscuit ready for the underglaze biscuit painting. The subsequent gold print has to be applied so that it lined up exactly with the smoke print.
Borders & Beads
As with many Best Ware patterns, PERSIAN had its own border called PERSIAN BORDER. The full border was very wide, as shown on the cigarette box base here and on the cover to the ginger jar above.
Often only part of a wide border was needed.
Carlton Ware called these beads. Many were used on coffee ware, the PERSIAN BORDER BEAD 2922 coffee cup and saucer on the right is a good example.
Sometimes another border was used, as on the rim to the baluster shape vase at the beginning of this article. Curiously, most people don't notice the border patterns, though many decorations would look unfinished without them.
Aside from the three PERSIAN variants shown here, ten others are listed in pattern records. There were five of PERSIAN BORDER BEAD. ❑
©Harvey Pettit 2015