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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Antique Ansonia "dresden Extra" Flow Blue Porcelain ClockLarge Antique Victorian William Ridgway Loving Cup Mug Flow Blue TransferwareRare Flow Blue Whampoa Ironstone Lg 12 3/4" Water PitcherSet Of 6 Beautiful Antique Flow Blue Butter Pats Cauldon England Circa 1890-1900Antique 19th C Meissen Flow Blue Ram's Head Candlestick Holder Incised T.66Labelle Flow Blue Ring-handled Bowl From The Wheeling Pottery Company, Ca. 1900Antique Royal Doulton Children Series Planter / Jardiniere - C1902 - Flow BlueLot Of 2 Antique Flow Blue Waldorf Dinner Plate New Wharf England Fan EmbossedAntique Labelle Flow Blue & White China Creamer Porcelain Mint Wheeling La BelleFlow Blue Elk Deer 1880’s Plate Edwin Megargee Signed Antique19c Staffordshire Meakin Flow Blue Olympia 4qt Soup Tureen & Platter 14" C1895 Antique Flow Blue **pitcher** Gaudy Ironstone/cherubs2 W.h.grindley Florida Flow Blue Plates C.1891.Antique Flow Blue Celery Tray Asparagus Server Marked Victoria Carlsbad AustriaAntique R&m Historic Staffordshire Flow Blue Plate "the Ride Of Paul Revere" N/r3 Featheredge Feather Edge Blue Flow Blue Ironstone Soup Plate Plates Beautiful Vintage Flow Blue Platter, Waldorf Semi-porcelain, New Waldorf PotteryAntique Flow Blue Plate 10 1/2" W. Adams & Co. Fairy Villas EnglandR&m Flow Blue Plate Theodore Roosevelt Rowland &marsellus Staffordshire SouvenirMeissen-flow Blue-onion Pattern-inkwell/desk Set-super Condition-crossed SwordsChilds Flow Blue Imari Toy Cup & Saucer Tea Set Minton Staffordshire C1840Set Of 6 Antique Blue Willow Flow Blue Desert Plates 7"Vintage Wheelock Made In England Flow Blue Plate Souvenir Chautauqua New YorkScinde Flow Blue Shell Relish John George Alcock England RareLarge Heavy Deep Antique Ironstone Flow Blue~8 Sided~serving Dish Platter~2 Pcs Conway New Wharf Pottery Flow Blue Plate & Platter2 Pieces Of Flow Blue Tranferware Bowl And 'davenport' Fluted Cup Antique Flow Blue Ironstone Pottery Soap Trinket Dish 2 Children Boys Primitive Victorian Flow Blue Gilt Dish C. 1900 [1313]Antique Transfer Printed Flow Blue Cup & Saucer.Flow Blue Plate Priscilla & John Alden Staffordshire England R & M Co.The Beautiful South, Let Go With The Flow (blue), M/ex, 2 Track, Cd Single, PictNonpareil 11" Dia. Sandwich Plate By Burgess & Leigh, Middleport - Flow BlueRidgway Trio Flow Blue 2 Cups & Saucer 2/8491 C1840 Antique Flow Blue **pitcher**flowersR&m Yale University Historic Flow Blue Souvenir Plate "old Brick Row" Exc. Cond.Gefle China (sweden) "vinranka-percy " Set Of 3 Flow Blue Cup/saucer SetsAntique Flow Blue 10" Dinner Plate "roseville" By John Maddock ~ Circa 1896Two Antique John Maddock & Sons English Flow Blue Butter Pats - VirginiaThriftchi ~ Antique W. Adams & Co. England Flow Blue Shallow BowlsBurgess Leigh Middleport Pottery Nonpareil Flow Blue Vegetable Tureen Very Clean6 Antique Flow Blue Butter Pats,wood & Son,england,royal Semi Porcelain,lorraineFlow Blue Large Soup Tureen Ladel Only Johnson EnglishRoyal Doulton Geneva Burslem Flow Blue Oval PlatterAntique Flow Blue Butter Pat Gold Trim Vintage Porcelain NiceVintage Russian Flow Blue Porcelain Decorated Lidded Pot Or Sugar BowlVintage Flow Blue Victoria Ware Iron Stone Large Covered Cheese Butter Dish Flow Blue Set 4 Cups 3 1/2" And 6 Saucers 6" Ca.1900 Floral Urn DesignVintge Flow Blue Butter Pat **waverly** By John Maddock & Son, England Ca. 1891Vintage Antique Chinoiserie Flow Blue Vase Hanzi SignedFlow Blue Grindley Rose Pattern 5" BowlVintage Flow Blue Pitcher Marked On Bottom Chinese Numbers And Made In ChinaVintage / Antique Flow Blue Single Serve Rice Bowl Antique Flow Blue Labelle Irregular Shape 10" TrayAntique 1880's Victorian Clifton England Flow Blue Footed Cake Stand Plate Gold T. Forester & S 19th Century Flow Blue Floral Gold Foil Vase, Early Tf&s MarkAntique Flow Blue Butter Pat Floral Vintage Ironstone PorcelainVintage Lynn Mass Souvenir Plate Made In England, Flow Blue Antique/ Vintage? Porcelain Dish With Lid. Butter Dish? Flow Blue?Pair Of Doulton Madras Flow Blue Plates C. 1900.

Recent News: Flow Blue China

Source: Google News

The Most Stylish Home Coffee Maker
Men's Journal, January 9th

After that it was like making popcorn on the stove: a bit of temperature control, and a bit of watching, and a minute or so later the coffee began to flow. (Blue Bottle also offers instructions you can follow for a fuss-free brewing experience.) And...Read more

Plates made in Staffordshire bought at garage sale
NewsOK.com, November 30th

Q: I have enclosed the mark that is on the back of six Flow Blue luncheon plates that I bought over 40 years ago from an antiques shop. Each dish is decorated with a border of roses against a white background. They are in perfect condition. What can...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

Ironstone Dish Is more than 170 Years
NewsOK.com, September 21st

It can be recognized by the blue gray transfer print design of a vase in the center that is surrounded by a Greek key pattern and also small flowers. The "Nankin Jar" pattern was used by several other potteries and available in Flow Blue and Mulberry ware...Read more

Why Blue Nile (NILE) Stock Is Falling Today
TheStreet.com, July 22nd

Despite an increase in cash flow, BLUE NILE INC's cash flow growth rate is still lower than the industry average growth rate of 15.47%. The gross profit margin for BLUE NILE INC is rather low; currently it is at 19.33%. Regardless of NILE's low profit...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

Flow Blue: A celebrated ceramic
Cincinnati.com, November 20th

Circa 1870, this 26-inch Flow Blue turkey platter was made by Copeland. It was sold by Cowan's Auctions in November 2004 for $862.50. As a general rule, the larger the size of a platter, the greater its value. When buying Flow Blue, look for examples...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