The "Grand Tour" inspired tea service I showed two weeks ago was popular - and it is already on its way to a lucky buyer. Today I have another beautiful tea service that is inspired by the Etruscan treasures that became so popular in the late 18th and early 19th Century.
Made by New Hall, this tea service is from about 1810 and it is made in the characteristic "hybrid paste" porcelain that New Hall produced: this was a hard-paste porcelain that had been slightly adjusted. It is a bit harder and greyer than the bone china that was already being made by most other factories at the time.
What stands out on this tea service is its very graceful pattern: hanging cobalt blue diamond shapes with little gilt sprigs around them, creating a very elegant rythm. This pattern is clearly inspired by the Etruscan art that people had started to fall in love with around this time.
The Etruscan culture ran from about 900 BC to 27 BC, by which time it had been fully incorporated into Roman culture. Of course that incorporation didn't happen overnight, and Greek, Roman and Etruscan art are closely interconnected. The Etruscans made, for instance, beautiful pots, but the vases and urns were often imported from Greece and then decorated in the Etruscan manner, which tends to be more playful than the Greek manner.
One give-away of the Etruscan style is the combination of strong geometric patterns (like the hanging diamond shapes on the tea service) set against playful and gracious foliage. If you love Italy for its bold design, beautiful food and pleasing climate - well that's the feeling of Etruscan art.
Where to find things
You can find all my tea and coffee services here, and all my available stock can be found here. If you always want to see the latest additions, follow me on Instagram... I post pictures and a story every single day.
And in the meantime...
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5th Century BC fresco of dancers and musicians, Tomb of the Leopards, Monterozzi necropolis, Tarquinia, Italy
This week's new treasures: