Why do I insist to hand carry Portmeirion from England; when it can be found in Marshall’s in Richfield, Minnesota, USA?.
So after thinking I had a rant about this, an educating rant, I realised the blog evaporated into thin air which might be the Universe’s way of telling me I write rubbish. But here I go again; as it came up in a discussion I was having when I carried it all to Richfield last week and delighted in explaining the difference. (BTW; it all sold. WoHoo!)
I live in England; I have a Passion for Portmeirion. Botanic Garden; but also Pomona Goddess of Fruit, John Culley pieces (it’s a great story!); Pat Albreck National Trust; but never Sophie Conran. Call me rigid in my belief system.
I live near a Marshalls in Minnesota. I know I just told you I live in England; but I just happen to live in two places. I am not a simple person. I went into Marshall’s the other day, as it was damn cold and I was walking to the post with seven boxes of Portmeirion finds to post out to lucky buyers. I am carbon neutral to negative in my passion (except for the airplane….but I never claimed perfection).
Cruising the housewares; I find PBG (Portmeirion Botanic Garden) O&V cruets. I don’t recognise the shape; immediately when I lift one up; I know what it is. MADE IN CHINA. Along with the highballs, wine glasses and tumblers I spotted.
So, Ms. Upper Crust Smarty Pants PBG Snobette; what is this big deal?? Why does anyone in the USA wait for you to come back from your travels to see what treasures you have unearthed of REAL PBG from Stoke on Trent? Not to mention that they might be drooling.
I blog to educate. Stoke on Trent; this lovely little spot on Earth where one finds Portmeirion; Wedgewood; Spode; Blakensley; and a number of other less known but equally adorable potters is home to the Big P after it was relocated from Portmeirion (the town) in Wales.
Real PBG is weighty and solid. Real PBG has thick glazes that the only thing I have ever seen to penetrate it was butter; probably from Jersey or Channel Island cows, second in happiness only to French cows. Real Portmeirion – all series, is salt of the Earth Village Made Locally Loved pieces created by people who not only get to hang out in a pub after work….but have a pension plan and work a decent week.
What goes on at “Portmeirion” in China? What is the supply chain? Governance? Quality control? I can tell just from piking it up that it ain’t the real deal. It is lighter. The glaze is not the same.
What really gets me going is those who sell Portmeirion on ebay; whatever; not really disclosing the difference between what they are selling and what is made over here (England). Even a real Portmeirion second from the factory here is much better quality that some of what I see across the pond.
So ask questions. Ask to see the “mark”. Educate yourself on the crests. Don’t take it for granted that just because it says Portmeirion on the tin…..that it is what most of us have come to expect.
Not even the robins are the same!!!