Clarice Cliff did most of her training at A J Wilkinson’s Royal Staffordshire pottery, which she joined in 1916. Her obvious talent was soon rewarded, and she acquired her own studio at the company’s Newport pottery in 1927.
Within a year, the Newport pottery was turned over entirely to producing her ‘Bizarre’ range. Her early designs consisted of geometric patterns outlined in black and painted in bright colours. Later, she went on to floral designs, which proved equally popular. An all-time favourite was the ‘crocus’ pattern, with its several colour ways.
She was also renowned for her use of distinctive and unconventional shapes, including ‘conical’, ‘stamford’ (a D shape with flat sides), and ‘bonjour’ (circular with flat sides). All these shapes were decorated with the popular ‘crocus’ pattern at one time or another. Later patterns included ‘Rhodanthe’, in different shades of orange and brown, ‘Viscaria’ and ‘Aureau’.
Clarice Cliff constantly experimented with glazes and firing techniques. She also created such an abundance of designs that by the end of her career there were more than 2,000 patterns and in excess of 500 shapes.
Chris Clubley and Co has a Clarice Cliff ‘Crocus’ pattern coffee service in its catalogued antiques and collective sale on 7 March, beside various other items of Clarice Cliff. Further details are available on the www.chrisclubley.co.uk/auctions or call 01430 874000. Further entries are still being invited for this catalogued sale.