A guide to Prattware pottery.


There are essentially two different types of Prattware of interest to collectors. There is early, hand painted Prattware and also a later, transfer printed Prattware. Both types of wares were produced by the Pratt pottery works in Fenton, Staffordshire, which was in continuous operation from 1775 until 1885 and it is after this company that Prattware is named.

Early, Hand Painted, Prattware

Early Prattware is a cream tinted earthenware, with coloured relief decoration painted underneath the glaze, which was made from about 1780 until the 1840's. It was typically produced from the same pallete of colours, namely brilliant orange, green, cobalt blue, black or brown. Also, zigzag and acanthus-leaf borders are very common design patterns.

This early pottery was not only produced by the Pratt factory, it was also produced by several other potteries in Staffordshire, along with many other companies from all over England and Scotland. However, it was most closely associated with the Pratt factory, hence it became known generically as Prattware.

Later, Transfer Printed Prattware

In the 1840's the Pratt factory became the leading manufacturers of pots with coloured, underglaze, transfer printed lids. These pots contained such things as bears grease, fish paste and potted meats and the colourful lids were designed to be an effective advertising device. The same transfer printed designs that featured on the pot lids were also reproduced on a large range of tea wares. These lids and other related wares are collectively known as Prattware.

It was not just the Pratt factory that produced these transfer printed wares. Most notably, the company of T.J & J. Mayer also had a reputation for very high quality products. Despite this, coloured transfer printed pottery became generically known as Prattware, regardless of the actual manufacturer.

Prattware Guide Books

Please see below for guide books providing information about collecting Prattware ...

Pratt Ware: 1780 - 1840 (3rd Revised Edition, 2005)
Author: John Lewis & Griselda Lewis

A stunning new edition of the first book to cover the increasingly popular subject of Pratt Ware. It is the only book which recounts what is known of the Pratt family of Fenton near Stoke-on-Trent and explains how this distinctive pottery came to be associated with their name. This type of ware was also made, however, by many other potters, not only in Staffordshire but also in Yorkshire, Liverpool, Sunderland, Tyneside, Devonshire and on the East and West coasts of Scotland.

The wide range of products is comprehensively discussed and each piece is traced to its manufacturer. The latest findings on the subject are presented here - including the details of a new maker who came to light during research for the book. New colour illustrations have been introduced throughout to replace many of those which were previously in black and white.

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Prattware For Sale

To buy Prattware items, please check out Ebay below ...

Price Guide

An excellent price guide to all varieties of Prattware is provided by Dorling Kindersley. They have detailed examples of animal and human figures, jugs, mugs, tankards, plaques, spill vases, teapots, Toby jugs, and pot lids.

Dorling Kindersley Prattware Price Guide