Posted 4 years ago
I eat off white plates but over the years I've had some interesting 40's and 50's dinnerware - and sold them all except for this square plaid set. I forgot it was called "Gay Plaid" there's a few items on ebay right now. Square, gay and plaid all at the same time - why not!
Blair Ceramics, Inc. 1940's-50's: William Blair studied at the Clevelend School of Art and then studied in Europe. He returned to Ohio and apprenticed in ceramics. In an attempt to persuade potteries to change their conventional ways, he contacted major potteries but was rebuffed. "Stick to your painting, sonny," they said. His view of American dinnerware was that it needed a "general overhauling." "It's downright immoral," Blair was quoted in 1949. "You see, most American dinnerware today is made by machine on an assembly line, in about the same patterns that have been used for a generation or more. To change their recipes a bit, the manufacturers buy up a few floral designs and paste them willy-nilly on the same old pitchers and plates." He went on to say, "Then these designs are stamped on over the finished pieces, instead of being baked permanently into the clay base, and after a few months of use, they wear off. All you've got left is a stack of clay slabs. Might as well eat off of a pie tin."
I found 20 pieces in CA in the 90's and didn't think I'd have a problem finding more - wrong - a little harder than I thought 10 yrs later in NM found another 25. I have dinner, sandwich, & dessert plates, the coffee pot w/cream & sugar, handle soup bowl and wonderful square dishes...plus a LOT of square coffee cups w/saucers.
Always hard to find the plates because they were used everyday and broke. That's why I only have 4. Marked "Blair, decorated by hand"
Hope you enjoy - Val