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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Large Joseph Heath Tonquin Flow Blue Pottery Pitcher MintRoyal Doulton Flow Blue Turkey Platter 1905-1922Large Keele Flow Blue China Platter W. H. Grindley 16" Excellent ConditionRare Flow Blue Ming Tree Vintage Arabesque Longport Huge 22in X 13in! Foot Bath 19" Antique Doulton Burslem Watteau Flow Blue Romantic Scene Porcelain PlatterLarge 14" Joseph Heath Tonquin Flow Blue Pottery 12 Sided BowlAntique Ridgway Humphrey's Clock Flow Blue China Jardiniere Vase EmbossedJ Wedgwood John Wedge Wood Flow Blue Ironstone Chapoo Serving Platter 1840-506 Antique Flow Blue Charles Meigh ~ Hong Kong ~ Butter PatsAntique Arcadia Flow Blue China Small Oval Platter Royal Staffordshire PotteryFlow Blue Hopberry Childs Cup & Saucer Tea Set C1840 Meigh StaffordshireFine Scenic Flow Blue Ewer Type Vase. C.1880.Wood Flow Blue Primitive Methodist Centenery Plate 1907.82 Pc Set 1880s Wood & Sons Lakewood Flow Blue China Svc For 10 + Serving PiecesBeautiful Rare Flow Blue Cheese DishTj&j Mayer Flow Blue Mulberry Rhone Scenery Tea Coffee Pot W Cover Circa 1850's Antique Royal Doulton Persian Spray Burslem Flow Blue Dinner Plate C. 1880-1900Rare Miniature Babes In The Woods Flow Blue Porcelain PitcherAntique Flow Blue Hand Painted Ftd Cup & Saucer-beautiful!Antique Flow Blue Butter Pat Scalloped Edge Vintage VictorianAntique Myott & Sons Flow Blue Crumlin Pattern Lidded TureenFlow Blue Blue Onion Rolling PinWheeling China Usa La Belle Flow Blue Small 5.5" Berry Bowl With Gold Gilt NicePair Of Floral Flow Blue CandlesticksAntique Flow Blue Persian Moss Cake PlateAdams Medallion Flow Blue Biscuit Barrel C.1891.Antique Flow Blue 10" Plate Lonsdale Pattern From England Circa 1800'sAntique Flow Blue Dinner Plate As Shown .99 NrLa Belle Flow Blue 9" Plate By Wheeling Pottery, Wv Gold Leaf In Good Condition!Antique J. Wedgwood John Wedge Wood Chapoo Flow Blue Handleless Cup & SaucerAntique Flow Blue Gold Trim Plate Hunting Fox Scene Tally Ho - No RelistAntique Myott & Sons Flow Blue Crumlin Pattern Lidded Vegetable Dish Tureen1933 Wedgewood Flow Blue Plate-west Point Military Academy Looking To The WestAntique Flow Blue Lily Plate Very Old Platter Swedish SwedenRare Staffordshire Nantucket Flow Blue Plate "why Worry" Perfect! No Reserve!Flow Blue Water Pitcher, Trenton, Nj Circa 1892Alcock Scinde Flow Blue Dinner Plate - Fgc 9.5in 12 Side C1840 Oriental StoneFlow Blue Creamer, Waldorf Pattern By New Wharf Pottery (wood & Son)Flow Blue Nonpareil Gravy Boat - By Burgess & Leigh Ca 1891Flow Blue Antique W.h.grindley Idris Pattern Egg Cup EnglandAntique Flow Blue Touraine ~ Small Platter ~ Dish England ~ 8.75"Flow Blue Design 2 1/4" Egg Cup Various Scenes UnsignedHuge Lot Leicester Samson Hancock Flow Blue Dinner Service. Flow Blue "non Pariel" Two Handled Cup And SaucerFlow Blue 7.75" Pitcher W Castle Scene And Trees On A Lake W Bridge 19th Century2 Johnson Bros. Kenworth Flow Blue Ironstone Bone Dishes, 6 ¼” X 3 ¼”, Ca 1900Till & Sons Cecil England Antique Flow Blue Cup & Saucer Sets 10 Pcs. Antique Flow Blue Plate Henry Alcock England Registered 9 InchAntique Flow Blue Handleless Cup & Saucer- Amoy Pattern By Davenport - Ca 1840'sAntique "ironstone" Porcelain Pitcher W/ Floral Design-flo Blue StyleAntique Porcelain Floral Flow Blue Match Holder With Double StrikersFlow Blue Decorative Plate Petrus Regout Abbey Pattern #1Hanging Cobalt Flow Blue & White Porcelain Sphere Ball & Fringe Tassel OrnamentFlow Blue CreamerFlow Blue Wh Grindley England Bowl Good ConditionAntique Flow Blue Utzchneider Persian Moss Condiment Tray Dish C. 1890 Germany5 Royal Staffordshire 10" Renown Pattern Flow Blue Plates Flow Blue "paisley" Butter PatC1850's Antique Flow Blue China Singan 7 Inch Ironstone Plate Ex.Antique Flow Blue - 10" Plate , "touraine" Made By Stanley Pottery Co. (2 Of 5)

Recent News: Flow Blue China

Source: Google News

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

At Home: Small touches can create homey farmhouse feel
The Daily News Journal, September 26th

Bell says one of the most popular dish designs is known as “Blue Willow” or “Flow Blue,” because the blue ink bled into the white background slightly. Heavier, restaurant plates and mugs also fit into this style. Other popular choices for a farmhouse...Read more

A magical history tour
Biddeford Journal Tribune, September 26th

Below: The dining room of the Edmund E. Goodwin house in Springvale sports reproduction Victorian wall paper and a dining table set with white linen and period flow blue place settngs. SPRINGVALE — The dining table is ready, set with snowy white linen...Read more

London shop a favourite of many artists
Waterloo Record, September 19th

It's from the first period of British "flow blue" production, a style resulting from a happy accident where the blue dye bled resulting in a publicly favourable colouration. It was made in great quantities for export to North America from 1840 to 1860...Read more

Over $16000 on offer at Republic Day Classic
Trinidad News, September 16th

Sponsors for this event are the People's Paper Newsday, the Tourism Development Company Limited, Beacon, FLOW, Blue Waters, Gatorade, Yoplait, Cole and Associates, Specialized and Mike's Bikes. As far as the registration is concerned, it will be $60 ...Read more

Fall Catalogued Auction of Antiques, 20th Century Design, Fine & Decorative ...
Maine Antique Digest, September 11th

Featuring a large and important private collection of more than 500 pieces of R. S. Prussia and related china including many rare portrait and scenic examples; large selection of other ceramics including collections of Chintz, flow blue, and Meissen...Read more

Bowling Green hosts Flow Blue club convention
Bowling Green Daily News, July 16th

The event will open to the general public at 10 a.m. on Sunday, with vendors selling Flow Blue dishware. Membership to the FBICC is $45 per year and may be obtained at the convention center or at flowblue.org, where payments can be made with PayPal or ...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