A brief Teacup History.

Nothing interesting on this post. I have gathered some information about the history of teacups. I’ve been studying a vintage teacup handed down from my Nanna, and since I’m studying it as one of my objects on this module, I thought it would be quite interesting to see how people started the idea of drinking out of bone china and where the shape and design came from on all of the teacups.

Originally designed for use at a high tea, vintage tea cups were made in another era of time. These cups are usually made over fifty years from the current date. Most tea cups are also considered vintage if they are no longer in production or being made. Combined with a variety of designs and colour styles, vintage cups are a well sought after collectible in the antique world.

  • History
  •  Tea cups were first introduced in the 17th century by the French culture, but the French originally used wooden cups in which to drink their tea. When the British began serving tea when the tea trade began, it was only available to British royals and those with wealth and class. Specialty designed cups were created from porcelain ornate designs and colours such as hand painted red roses with pale pink backgrounds. Tea was sipped from these beautiful, dainty cups. These were later referred to as tea cups. Hand painted tea cups were produced frequently right up until the 1920’s when more commercialized mass production of tea cups evolved. Coffee also began to take over tea’s popularity.
  • Well basically what I’ve learnt from this is that the teacup wasn’t always made of bone china, or even porcelain, it used to be wood? I actually really like this, it kind of makes me want to make it out of my own materials, to link it to the welsh past, Like felting or even weaving a teacup. A lot has changed though; teacups are available to any class of people now, not just the high class. Mine is a white background with hand painted pink roses on, a very vintage design in my opinion.
  • Function
  • Vintage tea cups are primarily sought after by collectors for display purposes only. Due to the delicate hand painted structure of many vintage tea cups, collectors do not use the tea for hot liquids. That’s to prevent damage to any piece of the tea cup. Some tea cups can be used on special occasions only, such as social tea events, holiday gatherings and guest visits. Vintage tea cups can also be utilized in craft projects where they can be filled with a wick and wax. They can be transformed into candles, filled with old mismatched buttons or used as table settings to add to Victorian decor.
  • I have already thought a lot about the function of my teacup. they have never been used. Ever. I didn’t really fancy cracking or damaging the china, so I just left and let dust get to them. I wanted to try and show that they can just be pieces of art, a little ornament.




About cerysjames

A 19 year old Textile Design student studying in Cardiff! I decided to start up a blog as a diary for all things textile! Mostly inspiration and exhibitions I've been too. My favourite things are printing and having a big imagination!

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