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You are here: Home > Learn > Articles > A Closer Look at Clarice Cliff

A Closer Look at Clarice Cliff

  • Judith Miller
  • 19 Jan 2010

JudithMillerClarice Cliff is perhaps the most famous name in British Art Deco ceramics, with her colorful designs being hotly sought after amongst collectors.

Prices range from under £50 ($90) for a 'Crocus' pattern small tray, to the world record price of £39,500 ($65,000) for a rare 'May Avenue' pattern charger. In this new series of short and practical articles, we'll tell you why a certain piece fetched as much as it did. Here, we examine a Clarice Cliff 'Mountain' pattern 'Tea For Two' set.Clarice Cliff Mountains Set

  • The 'Mountain' pattern was produced for only a very short period of time from 1931-32, meaning very few examples were made compared to more common patterns such as 'Crocus'.
  • It would be a challenge to find a single piece bearing this pattern, particularly the teapot, but to find a complete 'Tea For Two' set is particularly rare.
  • The set is in overall excellent condition, with no chips or cracks to the bodies, nor any wear or flaking to the painted pattern.
  • The geometric, Art Deco 'Stamford' shape, with its characteristic teapot and milk jug, and the 'Conical' shape teacups and saucers, are all highly desirable.
  • The combination of an Art Deco pattern, shape and typically bright colors is generally highly appealing to collectors.
  • Note the unpainted mountain top on the sugar bowl. This is typical of Cliff's wares, which were hand-painted. Colors used on different elements could be changed by the decorators (known as the Bizarre Girls), or accidentally left unpainted.

 Price Guide: £13,000-15,000 ($25,000-30,000)

 Image courtesy of Woolley & Wallis.