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Hand-Painted Versus Decals!!

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vintagelamp's loves118 of 3949Aesthetic Plate, C. 1880Antique Japanese Bowl
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    Posted 2 years ago

    (813 items)

    There is a big difference between hand-painted and hand-applied; what most people think is hand-painted, is actually done with decals-- no paint involved!
    Typically, floral plates like this are decaled; the last picture shows a decaled example. I picked this plate up because it was actually painted and not done with appliques (fine brushstrokes, blurred image, and no litho dots attest to it). The amount of work that Mr.(?) Bennet put into this plate was exquisite, because he hand-painted this example so finely.
    The final photo is a close-up of a creamer I have. The creamer, most people think, is hand-painted. While it has airbrushing around its rim, the florals are all decals. This can be determined if you look closely, for you'll see little irregular dots.
    For this example, look at the pink. The pink shows them most clearly. I picked this example because the dots are most evident over many other decaled works (AKA, they were very cheap with making this one). It was technically a transfer of a lithograph-- but not real transferware, because it was lithographed and not transfered from an engraving. Another sign is the brokeness of the image-- look at the leaf, how it seems to be disintegrating. Decals do that.
    Sometimes a decaled item will say "hand-painted" on the bottom, but no hand-painting was done. Why, might you ask? Until at least the 1970s, some manufacturers put "hand-painted" marks on the bottoms of "porcelain blanks" that were meant for the craft-world. I've seen entirely blank, never-used porcelain items that say "hand painted", so I chuckle at the fact that they were never painted. The manufacturer of the item did not paint or decal it. They sent blanks to ceramic shops and other such things where many people would go to paint, or in some cases decal, items for home use. Such classes, and even clubs, were popular till the turn of the 21st century, when the practice fell out of popularity.
    So, do not be deceived. Not everything that glitters is gold. Most items were mass-produced with decals. Sometimes embellishments will be done by hand over decals-- I see this quite often done by adding a little enamel (mostly dots and fine lines) to enhance an items aesthetics. Sometimes airbrushing was used, such as around the rims of sugar-jars or creamers. But, again, the main body of it was decaled.
    As for the maker of this plate, Heinrich & Co, Bavaria. I tried looking up the marks, but the websites all focus on their Selb marks. This doesn't have Selb. The few that looked more useful ended up sending my Antivirus program into a fit. As it turns out, the site was trying to download a particularly unchristian form of spyware. So, be wary when surfing the web!
    I'm guessing 1910s.

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    1. freiheit freiheit, 2 years ago
      Very helpful!!!
    2. AnnaB AnnaB, 2 years ago
      Very interesting, Spirit, thank you for your time sharing this info.
    3. truthordare truthordare, 2 years ago
      I love these old fine porcelain plates with a flower motif, the genuine hand painted ones, I used to have a living room wall covered with them. Your explanation to tell the difference is excellent. Most of mine were made in Germany too.
    4. SpiritBear, 2 years ago
      Freiheit, I try to be. Thank you.

      Anna B, my pleasure. I just see way too many people thinking they have something hand-painted when it's just a lithographed decal. With various chemicals, a litho can be smeared to look more like a painting (or, one can use higher quality lithography), but the fact of the matter is.... It's still lithoed and can be determined with a loupe.

      Truth Or Dare, thank you; this example was almost certainly painted in America. Germany happened to put out a lot of porcelain blanks which were shipped to America for decades. Most English and Japanese plates were finished in their respective countries. The English plates seem to have thicker paint over transferware designs, and the Japanese have a very distinctive hand-painting style. I've not seen many hand-painted German plates as they were master printers in various media and preferred to do that, but I'd assume England and Germany also had classes like Americans did/do where people could learn to paint blanks as well. So, all that leaves America as the most logical place this plate was painted.

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