Spode oozes a rich history of design and innovation, and today continues to produce product that is evocative of times past. This great British brand was originally founded in 1770 by Josiah Spode I, after he spent a decade in the industry learning his craft and fine tuning his inherent skills. His sheer energy and dedication lead to two major achievements that would go on to redefine the ceramic industry. Firstly, the development of the winning formula for fine bone china, and secondly the perfection of blue under-glaze printing.
|Blue Italian||Delamere Rural||Woodland|
All Spode Patterns
|Blue Italian||Blue Room||Blue Room: Queen Elizabeth II 90th Birthday 1926-2016|
|Christmas Jubilee||Christmas Tree||Delamere Bouquet|
|Delamere Lakeside||Delamere Rural||Giallo|
|Glen Lodge||Spode Christmas Mug & Tin Sets||Winter's Scene|
In 1778 he sent his son Josiah Spode II to London to set up a showroom and shop. This provided an invaluable asset, providing direct information from their wealthy and loyal customer base, and thus designing ware that their customers wanted.
In the late eighteenth century blue and white porcelain was becoming increasingly difficult to obtain from China, and with the relaxation of the taxes on Tea, Spode capitalized on a demand for tea-ware. With the newly developed process of designs engraved on copper plates, Willow was the first design to be launched, followed by Blue Italian in 1816, which has been in manufacture ever since.
After much time and experimentation Josiah I perfected the recipe for fine Bone China, with its brilliance, translucency and durability, it inspired a whole new approach to design and the development of decorating finishes.
Josiah Spode II returned to Stoke on Trent in 1799 after the death of his father, establishing the name of Spode around the globe for its unique product, as well as dedicating himself to the improvement of the working conditions and housing stock of Stoke. Succession followed to Josiah III who died suddenly just 2 years after in 1827. The company was sold to WT Copeland & Garrett and remained in the Copeland family until 1966.
Blue and white continues to thrive and Spode generated renown and highly collectable classics like Blue Tower, Camilla, Geranium, Aesop's Fable and Indian Sporting, which some now form part of the Blue Room collection. In 1936 it launched Christmas Tree, which has gone on to become one of the most successful patterns of all time. With a huge following in North America, each year the new collection is eagerly anticipated. In 2009 Spode became part of the Portmeirion Group.