Tuesday, 25 August 2009

FYI.............................. by Maggie Bryant

Today I thought that I would follow up on some of my previous blogs especially the last one which featured Doris’ collection.

Firstly, I want to mention a couple of articles that have appeared in the QCI Journal.
In Vol. 7 No 1, May 2005 author and Quimper expert Sandra Bondhus wrote about “Diminutive Delights”. “Miniature pieces which appeal to the child in all of us and have always held a special place in many collectors’ hearts”

It is an excellent tutorial on the type of Quimper pieces produced and the wooden Plozevet furniture on which they were displayed.

This leads me on to another very interesting article that appeared in the December Journal of the same year.
This time written by Don Batten with photography by Janice Kania it was entitled “Plozevet Museum of little Breton furniture”.
In the article Don explains that although he cherishes his miniature pieces of Breton furniture he always only used them as a backdrop for his pottery display.
That is until a visit to the Musee de Petits Meubles Breton convinced him that every piece is special and deserves more than a supporting role. There follows a fascinating glimpse into the legend, production, construction and producers of this charming Breton product.

On a personal note I think that every Q collection should have at least one piece of Plozevet in it, they can really bring a display to life.

In the same issue as the Plozevet article the Form & Decors article featured faience coffee & tea pots by Barbara Richardson, illustrated with some wonderful photographs submitted by the membership.
And.....whilst we're on the subject, a comment was posted on the “Nice cup of Tea” blog post earlier this month.
Hi, Maggie,
I've always wondered how to distinguish between French faience TEA and COFFEE sets! Can you explain the differences?
Thanks, Laverne

and I replied:
Welcome Laverne, you managed it at last!!
For me it's as simple as "is it a tea pot or a coffee pot? Round or tall?"
Anyone else care to comment?
Further investigation led me to the May 2006 issue of the Journal where I found that this same question had appeared in the Q&A section.

The reply that was given was this:

Coffee or tea? How do we tell the specific use intended for a given pot? Basically, two factors may be considered. One involves the pot itself. If the inside opening of the spout is made with a series of small holes, the vessel is considered a teapot – the small holes are intended to filter the tea leaves as the tea was poured. If the inner spout opening is just a single large opening, the pot is meant for coffee, which is not brewed in the pot.
The second consideration is the size of the cups. The French use a small cup for coffee (usually expresso), a medium cup for tea and the very large cups for breakfast (often coffee or tea au lait).
However, in the old Quimper catalogues, we see that very often the same pot, cream, and sugar served as the basis of a coffee, tea or breakfast service, the only difference being the size of the cups. This explains why the word verseuse, which means “something to pour from”, is frequently used as it covers both possibilities.
As mentioned in the previous blog some Journal back issues are available, simply email the Journal Editor. (The contact email addresses can be found in the Editorial Board announcement on the inside front page of your Journal).


  1. Dear Rooster Party Participant,

    Just a reminder that the Rooster Party is this Friday, August 28th. I am so glad you joined and I'm really looking forward to seeing your Roosters.

    Hope you have a wonderful time!


  2. Maggie, great idea to share the information on the Plozevet furniture. Perfect follow up to the miniature pieces. Adore the little swan baskets. I've never seen one of these in miniature. I have a large one. This is such a clever form with the long necks connecting to form the handle.

    Great post!

  3. Love the Plozevet pieces and so happy you mentioned the past articles. Once in a while I just like to get my old issues out and take another look. Also, if people have the copies of "The Old Quimper Review" from Millie Mali, these have very good information as well. I was sorry when she had to stop doing this, but can well understand.

  4. As Maggie knows I have been exploring the depths of my computer and looking at what I have in the archive, it's always fun looking at past articles and photo's.
    We really are very lucky that our members are so generous with their contributions
    I was lucky enough to visit the little Museum at Plozevet, it's just one room but fascinating.