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 Pair Of Thomas Forester Phoenix Flow Blue & Gold Vases Art Nouveau C1910Antique Johnson Bros. Staffordshire Flow Blue Pitcher "stanley" Very Nice Lot Of Eleven (11) Assorted Antique Flow Blue Butter Plates~lot #5! Nr!Wayne Brewing Co. Erie Pa. Pre-prohibition Beer Mug Stein Flo Blue CobaltStaffordshire Transfer Ware Flow Blue Rectangular Dish Castle & Flower Border Antique Asis Very Large Flow Blue China Scinde Pattern Turkey Platter Ca 1850 Rare Maddock Flow Blue Large Pitcher Wash Basin, Triumph Pattern Tulips Dry SinkA Rare John Maddock Flow Blue Chamber Pot & Lid, Triumph Pattern TulipsEarly Antique Flow Blue 5.25" Vase Or Toothbrush Holder~lot #1! Nr!Historical Dark Flow Blue Transferware 5 1/2" Bowl Bird On Nest Floral BorderAntique Flow Blue DishPeriod Flow Blue Transfer Decorated Staffordshire Teapot Swan Decoration Antique Vintage Flow Blue 11 1/2" Warwick China Tray W/ Gold Gilt Trim & FlowersSet/lot Of Six (6) Antique England H. Grindley Co Flow Blue 6.5" Bowls~lot #6!Antique England "virginia" John Maddock & Sons Flow Blue 9" Plate~lot #8! Nr!Set Of 8 Wood & Sons Verona Flow Blue & Gold Trim Dessert/bread Plates-markedAntique 1800's Flow Blue Open Salt Cellar Dip - Star Shaped Handpainted FlowersR & M Rowland & Marsellus Flow Blue Pitcher " Discovery Of America" 1908Antique Samuel Ford Flow Blue Plate 9 3/4" Beautiful Great Flow Vintage Cobalt 'blue Willow' Pattern Flow Blue Oval China PlatterVintage Cauldon England Flow Blue Bentick Floral Pattern 10” Dinner Plate PrettyAntique Bb New Stone Floral Decorated Flow Blue Rust English Pottery Pitcher RjiT. Dimmock (jnr) Cameoo Flow Blue Razor Dish C. 1844.Antique Flow Blue White Porcelain Foot Bath Planter Ironstone Victoria WareVtg Wood & Son Verona Flow Blue & Gold Trim Creamer-royal Semi-porcelain EnglandFlow Blue Plate, Manilla, P W & Co, Ironstone, 10" GenuineVtg Wood & Sons 'verona' Flow Blue & Gold Trim Handled Sugar Bowl + Lid-englandOld Flow Blue Gold Gilt Victorian Mustache Cup & SaucerMaling ~ Flow Blue ~ 1929 N.e.coast Industries Exhibition ~ Cup & SaucerEarly Antique Labelle Flow Blue 9" Plate~lot #10! Nr!Early Antique Flow Blue Floral 12.25" Oval Serving Platter~lot #4! Nr!Antique England John Maddock & Sons "dainty" Flow Blue 5.5" Bowl~lot #2! Nr!Flow Blue "madras" Pattern Sauce Ladle By Royal Doulton 1891Victoriaware Ironstone Calico Chintz Pitcher And Wash Bowl Basin Set Flow BlueLarge Antique Flow Blue Dinner Plate 1800's Kaolin Ware Chinese StaffordshireAntique Doulton Burslem England Madras Flow Blue Soup Salad Serving Bowl Ca 1900Flow Blue Platter With Shamrock PatternAntique Flow Blue 3" Lorne Butter Pat By Grindley Excellent 13 Star, Vintage Eagle, Ironstone, Flow Blue Bread PlateAntique English W. H. Grindley. Flow Blue Argyle China Blue & White Butter DishAntique England "lois" New Wharf Pottery Nwp Flow Blue 9" Plate~lot #7! Nr!Chinese Flow Blue Damaged Antique Tea Pot, Very Old.Antique Staffordshire Flow Blue **tureen W / Lid ** 1834-184810 1/4" Flow Blue Souvenir Plate Bird's Eye View Of Cedar Point Oh WheelockSet Of 3 Wood & Son Verona Coffee/tea Cups & Saucers-flow Blue Gold Trim-marked6 Antique Flow Blue Butter Pat Plates Matching SetAntique English W.h. Grindley Ashburston Flow Blue China Blue & White 2 S. PlateVintage S&n & Sons Coronet England Flow Blue Handled Vegetable BowlFlow Blue 9 1/2" Plate, Oregon, Chinese Porcelain, Tj&j Mayer, Longport, GenuineAntique England "touraine" Stanley Pottery Flow Blue Vegetable Bowl~lot #3! Nr!Antique Wedgwood "pilgrim Exiles" Flow Blue Transferware PlateDazzling Flow Blue English China Plate Gyrn Castle Wales R Hall 1825-1835Massive Antique Bourne And Leigh Flow Blue "blue Willow Platter Nr!!Vintage Flow Blue & White Villeroy And Boch Wall Salt BoxAntique Flow Blue Onion Canister - RaisinsAntique Flow Blue 8 3/4" Plate - Touraine Stanley Pottery Co England. MintAntique English W. H. Grindley. Flow Blue Argyle China Blue & White Serving DishJohn Maddock &sons England Royal Vitreous Flow Blue Tureen Antique Johnson Bros "clatton" Flow Blue 10" Plate~lot #16! Nr!Vintage Flow Blue Oval Platter By Grindley England Marie Pattern

Recent News: Flow Blue China

Source: Google News

A GOOD AGE: Selling off the family 'treasures'
Wicked Local Holbrook, May 26th

Many families have silver and gold mementos, jewelry, china and other collectibles left to them by parents and grandparents. Are they valuable? Deciding what to do with the family “treasures” can be a dilemma. A certified appraiser might help and an...Read more

Blue flow has fallen out of fashion
azcentral.com, May 12th

Question:I purchased about a dozen pieces of flow blue in the Normandy pattern during the 1980s. Because the pieces I have are at least a century old and in excellent shape, I assumed they would also be easy to sell. I was wrong. I am unable to find a...Read more

Flow Blue China, fruit jars
Wilson County News, May 6th

Q: I have about two dozen pieces of Flow Blue in the Melbourne and Normandy patterns. I am downsizing, but when I contacted antique dealers in my area there didn't seem to be much interest. The few offers I got were less than what I originally paid...Read more

Say it ain't so, Joe: Namath wouldn't do it all over again
WPBF West Palm Beach, April 30th


Qlik takes its data visualization platform to the cloud
SiliconANGLE (blog), April 27th

open flow blue data center infrastructure flying cubes architecture abstract big data analytics cloud Qlik Technologies Inc. is following the competition into the public cloud with a new managed implementation of its widely-used visual analytics...Read more

Once Strict 'Blue Laws' Have Largely Faded
Hartford Courant, February 25th

Until the 1980s, if you tried buying a pair of blue jeans, a place setting of flow blue china or a blue racer snake in Connecticut on a Sunday, you would likely have found yourself singing the blues. State law kept most stores shuttered. Though many...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