On offer is a very elegant tea set for four, manufactured by Royal Worcester in the years just before the outbreak of the Second World War. This tea set has everything of the British tradition in it: elegance, homeliness, comfort and artistic influences from abroad. After the war, everything would change and British china production would never reach the same level of excellent, until it would die a slow death in the 1960s and 1970s, outpaced by mass production in the Far East, the rise of plastics and people's changed habits (mugs! large ones).


Royal Worcester is one of the very long established potteries in England. It has very much its own tradition of round shapes and beautiful designs often with finely painted birds and flowers - it is quite different from the Staffordshire, Derby and Swansea traditions. Deep red is a recurring theme on Worcester designs, and this as well as the beautiful round shape can be recognised in this beautiful tea set.


The set consists of four teacup trios, a milk jug, a sugar bowl and a cake plate. All items are footed and have a beautiful rounded bell shape with slightly scalloped edges. The bone china rings like a bell; it is very high quality. The colours and glazing are superb as well: is the colour red? maroon? a little orange? rust? The fact that you can't really pinpoint the colour makes this set very interesting. The pattern consists of elegantly flowing large leaves in the same cream colour of the outside of the cups. Gilding is applied throughout but sparingly, making the set modest even in its high quality lavish character.

The items carry the famous red Royal Worcester mark that was used between 1938 and 1943; however after 1939 a lavish tea set like this would probably not have been produced as most potteries were required to only make blank products that would support the war effort. The pattern number is Z 1374.


This set would make a superb wedding gift!


CONDITION REPORT This set is in perfect vintage condition with no damage and very little wear; all pieces ring true and the gilding is hardly rubbed.


Please note that all items in my shop are of vintage or antique condition. They have often been used for many years and can have normal signs of wear. I will reflect any damage, repairs or heavy wear in the item description but some minor scratches, nicks and stains can be normal for vintage items and need to be taken into account.


There is widespread confusion on the internet about the difference between chips and nicks, or hairlines and cracks. I will reflect any damage as truthfully as I can, i.e. a nick is a tiny bit of damage smaller than 1mm and a chip is something you can see with the eye; a hairline runs over the surface glazing but not the body of the item and a crack runs through the body of the item, usually weakening its structure. Etcetera - I try to be as accurate as I can and please feel free to ask questions or request more detailed pictures!


DIMENSIONS cup stands 7cm high, milk jug stands 12cm high, sugar bowl stands 7.5cm high, cake plate 27cm diameter.


SHIPPING I ship worldwide from the UK, mostly by Royal Mail 2nd Class for the UK and International Tracked and Signed for the rest of the world. I am happy to combine shipping charges on multiple items - please contact me to discuss. In principle I do not make a profit on shipping although for simplicity's sake I charge flat shipping fees. If the fee charged greatly exceeds the actual cost I will gladly refund you the difference - at the same time if it is slightly lower I will gladly make up the difference. In some countries shipping will end up significantly more than the expected fees and I will contact you to discuss our options. PLEASE CONTACT ME FOR ANY QUESTIONS REGARDING SHIPPING COSTS AND OPTIONS.

Elegant Tea Set for Four, Royal Worcester, pre-war 1938

  • Your item will be shipped after receipt of funds, unless agreed otherwise in writing. 


    We will ship your items within a maximum of 2 working days after payment (usually quicker). We cannot be held responsible for delivery times once the item has been shipped as this is at the shipper's discretion and, in case of international delivery, can be subject to customs delays, weather, holidays and/or political instability.


    If your delivery failed to appear or was damaged in transit, please let us know as soon as possible and, in case of damage, provide us with pictures of the damaged item and/or packaging. Cut off dates for this are 14 days after shipping, or 2 days after a damaged delivery. We will need to comply with shippers' regulations in order to follow up the issue, but it is vital that you let us know what is wrong as soon as possible. We will do anything we can to follow up faulty deliveries but cannot be held responsible if we have not been notified within the required time period. 


    We always aim to have happy customers so if you have an issue with or questions about your item, please contact us and we will do anything we can to resolve the issue with you! 

  • Cancellations can only be accepted before the item has been shipped. Once an item has been shipped, the transaction cannot be cancelled anymore.

    Returns need to be requested within 2 days of receipt of the item and completed within 14 days from the date they have been agreed in writing.

    If you want to return an item because you changed your mind, you will be responsible for the return shipping. For international deliveries, this will need to be a fully tracked shipping mode. The item is expected to be received back in the same state it was sent - any damage due to insufficient packaging will be your responsibility. We will only pay for return shipping if we have mutually agreed that the item did not satisfy your expectations. A refund will be made immediately after receipt of the item.

    You are subject to the EU Consumers Rights Act, which protects your rights buying over the internet.


    We always aim to have happy customers so if you have an issue with or questions about your item, please contact us and we will do anything we can to resolve the issue with you! 

© 2020 by Gentle Rattle of China, London UK  

copyright on all images and text

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