Flow blue was a type of transfer pottery produced by Staffordshire, England, potters beginning in about 1820. Sold mostly in the U.S. market, flow blue was similar to traditional blue-and-white pottery, except that the blue color was deliberately blurred, an effect achieved by adding a cup of lime or ammonia to the kiln during glazing.

English manufacturers of antique flow blue included Wedgwood, Johnson Brothers, Minton, Royal Doulton, and Swansea. Patterns ranged from Blue Danube to Idris to the classic Willow. As for the objects themselves, they included toilet wares and teapots, plates and platters, vases and garden seats, and even dog bowls.

One interesting subset of flow blue is the blue-marble effect. All-over patterns such as Lazuli lent itself to this look: When given the flow-blue treatment, the pattern would blur so that from afar the object resembled a piece of carved, blue-veined marble.

By World War I, U.S. potteries were producing most of the flow blue for the domestic market, causing English potters to exit the business, which had never been popular in the U.K. to begin with. The desirability of the ware waned in both countries between the wars, but interest picked up again in the U.S. in the 1960s. Because large amounts of 19th-century flow blue had been shipped to, or manufactured in, the U.S., flow blue remains fairly reasonable to collect.


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Super Rare Flow Blue 'chinese Bells' Childs Toy Sauce Tureen/plate/ladle C1840 Royal Vienna (beehive) Flow Blue Portrait Scene Plate W/ Raised Gold & CobaltIronstone Flow Blue Strawberries Octagon Platter Elsmore Forster Gaudy Welsh1850A Rare Flow Blue 'chinese Bells' Childs Toy Miniature Well & Tree Platter C1840 A Rare Flow Blue 'chinese Bells' Childs Toy Miniature Covered Veg Dish C1840 Beautiful Flow Blue 'davenport' Pedestal Eggcup C1848 19c Morning Glory Flow Blue Strawberry Coffee PotCobalt Flow Blue Rs Prussia Ink BlotterWaterbury Rare 1891 Flo Blue Cobalt Parlor #90 China Porcelain Clock Stunning NrAntique La Belle Wheeling Pottery Co. Flow Blue 10" Turkey PlateA Set Of 6 Nested Flow Blue Platters 'chinese Bells' Childs Toy Miniature C1840 Antique Ironstone Chusan Flow Blue Octagon Bowl J. Clementson Pagoda And PalmsWilliamsburg Delft Carolina Tobacco Jar Porcelain Flow Blue Urn Brass Top Flow Blue Serving Bowl In The Rare "watteau" Pattern "bueslem Doulton"Antique Labelle Flow Blue Victorian Cracker JarA Rare Flow Blue 'chinese Bells' Childs Toy Miniature Covered Veg Dish C1840 Rare 1873 Royal Delft Tile De Porceleyne Fles Flow BlueCauldon Flow Blue BowlAntique Flow Blue Serving Bowl With Handle Wheeling Labelle 9" Cobalt WhiteF&m Flow Blue Plate - Cashmere - Deer Scene - Circa 1850's - 9 1/4"Old Flow Blue Staffordshire Dinner Plate People Goats And Cows Ironstone ChinaHenry Adcock Touraine Flow Blue Gravy / Sauce Boat Dated 189819c Meissen Reticulated Blue Onion Flow Blue Serving Bowl C185019c Meissen Porcelain Reticulated Blue Onion Flow Blue Serving Bowl C18501850's Flow Blue Plate - F&m Co. - Cashmere/deer - 8 1/4"Flow Blue Warwick Jardinere, Dutch Windmill SceneFlow Blue Transferware Historical Neptune Sugar Bowl Mythology Ralph James ClewsAntique Staffordshire Podemore & Walker Flow Blue Temple Cup Saucer Formosa Flow Blue Spittoon As IsVintage Royal Bayreuth Sontag & Sons Flow Blue Berry Bowls & Teabag SaucersAntique Burgess Leigh Middleport Non Pareil Flow Blue Scenic Pottery Plate54999 Antique 12 Burgess & Leigh Nonpareil Flow Blue China Salad Bowls Platter Rowland & Marsellus Souvenir Flow Blue Plate Sherbrooke Quebec CanadaAntique Keeling & Co Losol Ware Cavendish Flow Blue Vase 1900-1910Charming Flow Blue Creamer C186019th Century Flow Blue Chusan Clementson 10 1/2" Handled Plate Antique Flow Blue Ironstone Plate 8 1/2" Joseph Heath Flow Blue Cambridge Royal Semi-porcelain Wood & Son 9" Dinner PlateFlow Blue Touraine By Stanley Large Sugar Bowl19 Pc Flow Blue China Dinner Set. K&c And Co, Chatsworth, EnglandFlow Blue Chatsworth K & C & Company Set Of 6 ~ 9.5 " Luncheon Plates9 Vintage Flow Blue B.&l. "richmond" Butter Pats7 Antique Pieces Of Johnson Bros. Holland England Flow Blue Onion PatternFlow Blue Florida Grindley 9.75 Dinner PlateFlow Blue Argyle ~ Wood & Son 12.5 " Oval PlatterFlow Blue Kenworth ~ Johnson Brothers Cup And Saucer4 Antique Ironstone 1800s 1820s Gaudy Dutch Flow Blue Lusterware Plates EnglandEarly Staffordshire Flow Blue Scenic Plate Scalloped Rim 10" HairlineAntique Flow Blue Pitcher - La Belle ChinaAntique Flow Blue Two Handle Sugar With Cover Hong Kong 8 1/2" TallStaffordshire Flow Blue Waldorf Berry BowlFlow Blue Waste Bowl Figurers With Birdcage Scenic HouseAntique Flow Blue Platter Waldorf Semiporcelain New Wharf Pottery EnglandVintage Gerold Porzellan Oblong Flow Blue/gold Trim Platter Antique Flow Blue Lakewood Woods & Son Relish Or Serving Tray H&k Tunstall Hollinshead & Kirkham Flow Blue Persian Covered Vegetable Bowl NrFlow Blue Conway New Wharf Pottery 8" Luncheon Plate Ridgway Oriental Flow Blue, Flo Blue 13" X 10 1/2" PlatterAntique Blue & White Flow Blue Egg Cup FloralF & R Pratt Oriental Flow Blue Plate C.1840.

Recent News: Flow Blue China

Source: Google News

Everything has its purpose in Carolina Forest home of Paul and Bonnie Boehlke
Myhorrynews, November 24th

Bonnie Boehlke has a knack for knowing where to put things – whether it's a pair of Victorian-looking dolls in the corner of a lavender-colored guest room, or a bouquet of hydrangea in her mother's flow blue pitcher on the kitchen counter. In the...Read more

ASK THE EBAY QUEEN: Why is this eBay buyer seeing red over PINK?
Ottawaherald.com, November 14th

It sold for $1,500 at http://www.ebay.com/itm/LaBelle-Flow-Blue-China-Turkey-Platter-and-10-dishes-/131295060147. Suzie Eads is a nationally known eBay marketer and eBay trained education specialist. She lives in Rantoul. Have a question for the eBay ...Read more

Marietta postcard album and pin bring in $1300
LancasterOnline, November 2nd

Items .500sold included: a maple bedroom set, $850; a set of flow blue china, $400; a Myerstown coverlet, $375; a set of sterling flatware, $1,300; a Husqvarna tractor, $725; a cherry tall case clock, $380; a softwood corner cupboard, $330; and an oak...Read more

John Sewell's This Old Thing
Windsor Star (blog), October 31st

This is a fine example of the late period of “flow blue,” an intentional running of the blue colour that was in fashion during this time. The rose pattern is based on a climbing tea rose often called the “Old Glory Rose,” initially bred by Pierre...Read more

City to sell blue fountain water to benefit City of Fountains Foundation
fox4kc.com, October 21st

in Kansas City are in need of critical repair. The blue water bottle sale will start on Wednesday, Oct. 22 at 10 a.m. at Plaza Customer Service located at 4750 Broadway Blvd. The city says eight major KC fountains will flow blue throughout the...Read more

Terence Blanchard – Flow – Blue Note – vinyl
Audiophile Audition, October 12th

Terence Blanchard is an important part of the new jazz resurgence. After stints with the Lionel Hampton Orchestra and Art Blakey Jazz Messengers, he became an in demand sideman and pursued a successful career as band leader. Along the way, he ...Read more

Joe Rosson: Flow blue patterns form a slight blue haze around design
Knoxville News Sentinel, August 26th

Q: Enclosed are pictures of china that belonged to my father's aunt. I don't have the full set, but I do have several pieces, including a large platter and a serving bowl with lid. The markings have "Anita" and "England" stamped on them, but I cannot...Read more

Joe Rosson: 'Flow Blue' plates no longer red-hot with collectors
Knoxville News Sentinel, August 3rd

It was made in England by Johnson Brothers and is in their "Kenworth Flow Blue" pattern. I have found two serving pieces priced at $199.95 each, but not the value of the plate. Can you help? Sincerely,L.W.Dear L.W.:I think I can, but the news is not good...Read more