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 Deep Flow Blue Staffordshire Platter Plymouth, Ma.excellentFlow Blue La Belle China Creamer And SugarC. 1840 Podmore Walker Flow Blue "manilla" Platter - Ex ConditionAntique Ridgway & Morley Flow Blue Flo Blue "cashmere" Scenic Dinner PlateSmall La Belle Scalloped Flow Blue Serving Bowl By Wheeling Pottery Circa 1900Excellent Antique Flow Blue China Tall Covered Sugar BowlPeacock Flo Blue Burlesque Moulin Rouge Carnival Dress Up Costume Show Skirt Davenport Amoy Flow Blue 10-1/2" DiameterW.wood & Co Floral Flow Blue Sugar Castor.Large 7.25" Victorian Gaudy Welsh Jug Wagon Wheel Pattern Flow Blue HexagonalRoyal Doulton Burslem - Flow Blue & White Gilded Vase With Silver Rim - Nice!J Goodwin Longton Flow Blue Rousillon Teapot Coffee Pot IronstoneEarly Paneled Antique Flow Blue Handless Cup & Saucer- Sobraon-oriental- English11 Vintage Osbourne Flow Blue 6 7/8 Luncheon PlatesWheeling Pottery C1879 - 1910 Antique Flow Blue Gold La Belle Bowl NappyAntique Vintage Flow Blue Eye Bath GildedFlow Blue Brushstroke Sm Vegetable Dish With Gilt DecorationRare Antique Flow Blue Ironstone China Sugar Bowl~ Figural Cat HandlesDorothy Royal Semi Porcelain Flow Blue Plate EnglandAntique Royal Staffordshire 9 1/2" Flow Blue Iris Round Serving PlatterRare Antique Flow Blue & White Ironstone Cream Pitcher ~figural Cat Handles1851 Flow Blue Vegetable Dish19c Antique Gaudy Ironstone Flow Blue Strawberry Bowl/cup 2 Antique W.h.grindley Flow Blue Grace Cups With Saucers No ReserveAntique W.h.grindley Flow Blue Grace Oval Serving Bowl No Reserve4 Antique W.h.grindley Flow Blue Grace Berry Bowls No ReserveOld Flow Blue China Pottery Display Serving Platter Female Lovers Motif Wall ArtRare Antique Conway Flow Blue 9" Plate Wharf Pottery Antique W.h.grindley Flow Blue Grace Pattern Gravy Boat With Under Plate No ResAntique New Wharf Lancaster English Flow Blue 9" Plate No Nicks Chips Or CracksAntique W.h. Grindley Osborne Flow Blue 8” Water PitcherLot Of Four Ridgways Rose Flow Blue Soup Bowls—niceFlow Blue Ridgway Lonsdale Covered Sugar And PlateAntique Toy Child Doll Miniature Flow Blue Gaudy Ironstone Open Vegetable DishAntique Toy Doll Child's Miniature Flow Blue Gaudy Ironstone Platter2 Antique W.h.grindley Flow Blue Grace Pattern 9" Plates No ReserveAntique Flow Blue China PiecesRare Antique James Edwards Ironstone, Flow Blue Octagonal Serving Dish 1840-1860Antique Flow Blue Plate Waldorf New Wharf 7"Beautiful Antique Maddock & Sons, England Flow Blue "dainty" Shallow Soup BowlFlow Blue Brooklyn Bridge PlateFord & Sons " Brentford " Flow Blue Covered Dish Underplate, Ladle , Lid AntiqueAntique 8" Flow Blue Jug Pitcher Elephant & Camel Pulling Carriages Copper Pair Of H. W. Grindley "portman" Flow Blue & Gold Tea & Saucers Cups Circa 18911857 Gaudy Welsh Paris White Ironstone Walley Blackberry Flow Blue Plate 8 1/2 Clementson Chusan Flow Blue Ironstone Unhandled Cup, 3”t, 3 5/8”d, Ca. 18402 Antique W.h.grindley Flow Blue Grace Pattern 7" Plates No ReserveAntique~ Stoneware~salt Crock~cobalt Flow Blue Hand Painted Wall Hanging Antique Ca 1850 Open Lace Flow Blue Conway New Wharf 9" Dinner Plate Vg FFlow Blue Cup & Saucer New Wharf Pottery English “lois”Churchill England Flow Blue Willow Pair Two Vintage Soup Cereal Bowls Ex/condPair Of Antique Flow Blue Bowls / Tea Bowls – A/f – Op/58eiiiC1925 Crumlin Flow Blue Myott & Sons England 8" Salad Plate Semi Porcelain 2 Flow Blue Yakima Washington Plates Made In England 9 Inches In DiameterWatteau Flo Flow Blue Pitcher Staffordshire England2 Beautiful Antique Touraine, Stanley Potteries England Flow Blue Dinner PlatesBeautiful Antique Touraine Flow Blue Dinner Plate By Henry Alcock & Co. EnglandFlow Blue Soup Bowl Waldorf Pattern Wide Rim 9 InchesAntique Wedgwood "auld Lang Syne" Tea Cup, Flow Blue China, Gold Trim # Y6430Antique Ca 1850 Open Lace Flow Blue Conway New Wharf 8" Dinner Plate Xlent G

Recent News: Flow Blue China

Source: Google News

Rare globe was a 19th-century status symbol
Waterloo Record, January 23rd

A. You have a very nice set of what you've correctly identified as "flow blue" pottery, dating from sometime between 1891 and about 1900, and created in the Tunstall, England-based pottery opened in 1875 by Alfred Meakin. The company remained in family ...Read more

Julie Green: Yielding to the capricious outcome
Oregon ArtsWatch, December 8th

The artist has repurposed a Noritake dinnerware for 12 inherited from her grandmother by painting over the original prim pattern with flow blue pigment. On the bottom of each piece, the artist inscribed moments of awkwardness in her life, for example...Read more

Blue Latitude Health wins PMEA 2015 Innovation award
PMLiVE, November 30th

We are pleased to announce that Blue Latitude Health has won a PMEA 2015 award for our work with Eli Lilly and Company on the Lilly Medical Information Cascade. The project was shortlisted in two categories, 'Excellence in Physicians/Healthcare ...Read more

Flow Customers to Win Big This Christmas
St. Lucia Times Online News (press release), November 23rd

The company celebrates its first in store promotion at the Flow Blue Coral Retail Center with great fanfare and lots of excitement as customers were greeted by Santa's helpers and treated with fruit cake and sorrel! The Flow Christmas campaign features...Read more

Huuuuuuuuge New Thermal Hydrolysis System For DC Wastewater Is World's Hugest
CleanTechnica, October 9th

At peak flow, Blue Plains handles 1 billion gallons of wastewater daily from Washington, DC (yes, that includes the Capitol) as well as several neighboring jurisdictions, making it the biggest plant of its kind in the world. By way of comparison, New...Read more

Mapping lava flows in Iceland
Phys.Org, September 10th

An aerial photo shows the edge of the Holuhraun lava flow (blue line), where the lava went over a combination of sand and bedrock. Two types of lava appear on either side of the red line: smooth pahoehoe on the right and rubbly a'a on the left...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

Joe Rosson: Flow blue dinnerware not as old as expected
Knoxville News Sentinel, August 23rd

The term "flow blue" refers to transfer-printed blue-and-white dinnerware in which the blue seems to "bleed" or run and create a sort of hazy, soft, and dreamy pigmentation that many collectors find very attractive. There are those who maintain that...Read more