January 2016

Views and opinions below are personal to Masterspy and don’t necessarily reflect those of our membership.

Well, still no puter. Still using knackered old borrowed lappy. Not happy. Cross your fingers it lasts out again.

Mad Item of the Month

01-jan-16-250Readers, far be it from me to unjustly decry the work of learned author Gul Akdagor, or his tome entitled “Ethnicity and Elections in Turkey: Party Politics and the Mobilization of Swing” especially since I have not read a single word of it. The description of the 266 page book reads as follows….”Ethnicity and Elections in Turkey attempts to understand the mobilization strategies of incumbent parties to consolidate and increase their support among swing voters of an ethnic group. By analysing the strategy of AKP on voters of Kurdish origin, it investigates the conditions under which it can mobilize them through the clientelistic network and its effectiveness in increasing support for the party.” There is far more of that stuff (just in the book description alone), but I think I have made my point that this volume has an exceptionally limited audience. So, good luck to publisher and author finding takers at the monumentally elevated price of £103.38. Sounds riveting, can’t wait for my copy to arrive.

Carlton Ware Humpty Dumpty musical jug

Humpty Dumpty musical jug


Over Optimistic eBayer of the Month

Perhaps some will find fault with my selection this month, feel free to tell me so of course (especially those of you who own one of these). This novelty musical Humpty Dumpty jug was first listed by Salopian (a native of the county of Shropshire, foreign readers) colin.willcock.antiques at a huge £695.00, but has now been reduced to £556.00, a 20% reduction, but nowhere near enough to interest me.




Bargain of the Month

Doodle 3920 Fan shaped cigarette holder

Doodle 3920 fan shaped cigarette holder

Unusually, I can’t prove this was a bargain, but it disappeared fairly quickly as the seller ubiquitously stated that it was “no longer available” and we all know what that means, don’t we? Annoyed me actually, as Doodle 3920 was a pattern I had been trying to find for some time, but hey ho, I should have been quicker, so no complaints. Seller berrysmouse listed it at a start price of £15.00, but who knows what price was agreed?

JAZZ STITCH 3655 vase S467

JAZZ STITCH 3655 vase S467


So Here is the First Stuff from 2016

As you know I am  very partial to a spot of Deco and I don’t see what could be much more Deco than this JAZZ STITCH 3655 vase BIN/ONO’d by Aussie seller asafbsh84. It went for £154.11. Nice piece.



Carlton Ware PERSIAN GARDEN 3893 vase S456

PERSIAN GARDEN 3893 vase S456



I am even more partial to PERSIAN GARDEN 3893 with the black gloss ground. In fact I could happily kill you all to get my hands on a 9½” vase in shape 456. Unfortunately, I failed again when glad-findings listed one such. It went to £674.32. Too high for little old Masterspy, but a Happy New Year pressie to himself for one Aussie eBayer.



Carlton Ware GARDEN 3413 boxed set of napkin rings

GARDEN 3413 boxed set of napkin rings



GARDEN 3413 on the pale blue mottled matt ground is certainly pretty, so when seller chris2465chris (what makes you think the seller’s name is Chris) listed a full boxed set of four napkin rings there was always going to be a fight and so it proved. Despite some damage and wear to the box 10 bidders tucked into this dainty repast and it sold for £160.00….. a tasty sum indeed.



Carlton Ware Feathertailed Bird & Flower 3355 covered vase.

Feathertailed Bird & Flower 3355 covered vase.



This Feathertailed Bird & Flower 3355 covered vase with chip on lid seemed to have attracted 30 bids, but, how can one put this…… all but 4 of them looked, errrrr….. dodgy to me. I know one thing, I wasn’t bidding on it. Pity really I do like the pattern and have a nice big 406 in it.





Carlton Ware Mirage 3915 MODERN WARE shape coffee cup & saucer

Mirage 3915 MODERN WARE shape coffee cup & saucer

“And now there are many lonely lies,/ beheld by my streaming red-rimmed eyes./ Blinking in the desert’s golden glare,/ I can only stumble, stop and stare./ What is the shimmering mystery sight I see?/ Why, ‘tis a siren mirage of pool and tree!” (© eBay Masterspy lol)….. Forgive my spot of pseudo-romantic doggerel verse, readers. It isn’t late at night. I haven’t been glugging the Laudanum by the gallon (or the red wine either – although that is an excellent plan which I will extensively execute later – never been known to refuse). Now see what has happened. I can’t turn off the alliteration. Cup of tea…. Ahhhhh…. Sorted. All of the above is really about the occasional notions I have about the inspiration for the more abstract of CW patterns. Look again. I am sure you will see it too. Anyway, well known mackem markyeva1968 had a cup and saucer in Mirage 3915 which must have impressed 5 of you lot cos it glistened in that morning glow all the way to £103.00. I hope the cash didn’t have a mirage-like quality for the seller.

Carlton Ware Medley 3587 preserve & cover with stand

Medley 3587 preserve & cover with stand



Up there in bargain of the month territory is this little lidded preserve pot with saucer in Medley 3587 sold to a £20.00 singleton bidder by puffett. Gotta be great value for money.




Carlton Ware Eden 4241 ginger jar missing cover

Eden 4241 ginger jar missing cover


Yet another indication of the importance of excellent photographs when selling stuff on eBay is given by this listing for a 6” lidless ginger jar in the uncommon Eden/Tiger Tree 4241. The picture was terrible, though has been enhanced here so that you can see the pattern. It made only £94.33.




This complete coffee set in the PARISIENNE shape with decoration 4078 aka Vertical Stripes is sooooo Deco and so opulent.

Carlton Ware PARISIENNE shape coffee ware with decoration 4078

PARISIENNE shape coffee set with decoration 4078

Despite having crazing, staining and chips on at least 3 of the pieces it still managed to raise £113.11 for seller margaretc5560. I still think the buyer got a bargain. probably because the sellers picture, enhanced here, were poor. The set t is simply gorgeous. Nuff said.

REVOs must be on the rise! This example in DAISY 3691 auctioned by chris2465chris rose to a very respectable and profitable £129.23.

Carlton Ware DAISY 3691 REVO tray

DAISY 3691 REVO shape tray

Yes, they are hard to display, but one of the best shapes for many patterns.

Not very often you see this deep 9” diameter 3 footed bowl shape on eBay, but stwilfridshospice2010 had one donated in SKETCHING BIRD 3890, again with terrible pictures, though Photoshoped here for you


SKETCHING BIRD 3890 ROYITAKE shape footed bowl S376

Nice blending of colours in this pattern. My money went where my mouth is. I have 2 pieces in this pattern and colourway. This time St Wilfrids benefitted to the tune of £103.47, which can’t be bad.

Carlton Ware Jigsaw 3431 vase S456

Jigsaw 3431 vase S456


One of CW’s most striking, and consequently most sought after patterns, is Jigsaw 3431. Every piece of Jiggy is viciously fought over and this one was no exception. A 7½” 456 shaper in excellent condition will fly. In this case half a dozen CW stalwarts did the fighting and the final piece was inserted for a price of £550.00. Back to my imagination, readers…. Is the design supposed to be an abstract garden with its bordered flower bed, larger flowers and lawn? If so, the last piece fitted in was probably part of the lawn!!!



Marmite time, readers. I quite like this pattern myself, I but can see why some don’t. Called MODERN CROCUS by Violet Elmer, its designer, to me it seems to be a mix of Medley and a spiky flowered pattern, Daisy perhaps.

Carlton Ware MODERN CROCUS 3803 REVO shape tray

MODERN CROCUS 3803 REVO shape tray

Not much of this pattern about, so it is probable that the CW buyers of the time were not overly persuaded either. Anyway, this fine REVO shape tray made £47.00 for seller juggler_boy. Had it been me selling, I would have been disappointed with 47 quid, but there you are. The market is the market.

Yet another pattern which is absent from the masterspy cabinet is GARDEN GATE 3863 (not for want of my repeated, but thus far unsuccessful attempts to bring the lack thereof to a sudden end) although I do have the shape.

GARDEN GATE 3863 fan handled tray

GARDEN GATE 3863 fan handled tray

This 12” dish made only £64.02, which I reckon is on the cheap side for such a pretty pattern.

Most of the tubelined patterns don’t make huge money, but TUBELINED TREES & FIELDS 4138 certainly can do.

Carlton Ware TUBELINED TREES & FIELDS 4138 plaque


The Queen of Cleveland, under her new moniker milli_fleurs, listed a nice charger which made £302.00. I hope you don’t place it on the bog wall, buyer, like another collector does with chargers!!! We don’t want any of that nonsense with our CW, do we readers? No indeedy. The things I learn collecting CW which can be filed under the heading of Too Much Information. Ha ha.

Carlton Ware CHINALAND 2948 small trinket box

CHINALAND 2948 small trinket box

Sad tale of the month was told by seller mogg0007 from Mackem land. He listed a small trinket box in CHINALAND 2948 which had been kicked around the room and back again and repaired with browned glue. So sad. It only sold for £11.59, but is restorable to museum condition.  Much enhanced here, could the worst picture posted on eBay for a long time have hindered its sale?

Carlton Ware Melange 3601 vase S406

Melange 3601 vase S406


On the other hand, “perfect” is a very specific word, similar to “unique” in that respect. In its very nature it is a word incapable of more than one meaning. If a seller states that his or her piece of CW is either of these 2 things, said seller should be certain that this is the case. I can’t be doing with a description such as “Perfect except for worn gilding/hairline crack/small chip” etc. If it isn’t perfect please don’t advertise it as such, even with a caveat. What item raised the masterspy hackles? It is a 6” 406b shape vase in Melange 3601 with some wear to the gilding on the top rim. Melange is a valued pattern and the 406 is one of CWs top shapes, so it still sold for £261.33. I feel better now. Yet another rant over.


Further back in history CW had been well into chinoiserie as we all know and one of the chin patterns with the largest following is DRAGON.

Carlton Ware DRAGON 2062 WINDSOR shape tray

DRAGON 2062 WINDSOR shape tray

In this case we have a 9¼” square shallow bowl in powder blue pattern number 2062 which I feel we might see again one day. It went up to £79.00 and I don’t think in this shape or colour it had many more legs (with or without scales). We will see.

Liberty Belle 3506 in the 8” shape 495….. yummy. Despite having had 3 chips, only 2 of which have been repaired it still reached £159.01.

Gypsy 3506 jug S495

Liberty Belle 3506 jug S495

This is a good price for the seller miibbious, but a nice piece nonetheless. Get it on a top shelf as I always say.

Carlton Ware Babylon 4126 CONE shape bowl

 Babylon 4126 CONE shape bon-bon


I am a fan of the trefoil conical bon-bon. I also like Babylon 4126, especially in Ruby lustre. This 4½”er has had a hard paper round, so to speak, suffering from wear to both ground and gilding and a small chip on one foot. However, it triumphed against such trivial adversity to raise £72.50, despite another awful picture posted by the seller.



Carlton Ware Mandarins Chatting 3890 vase S456

Mandarins Chatting 3890 vase S456

Finally for this month we have a superb 7” 456 shape Mandarins Chatting 3890 vase. If the last piece was yummy, this one was woweeeeee and so was the price £431.99. One day I will find a 6” jug vase in this colourway to complete a display, but, until then I will content myself with drooling.

So there we go. Another month without me puter. Oh well. As always, feel free to make any comment on the form provided.

All the best

eBay Masterspy



As usual, on these pages, patterns named in BOLD UPPERCASE, e.g. MIKADO, MAGPIE, are names found in factory pattern records.  Those in Capitalised Bold Lowercase, e.g. Heron & Magical Tree; Hiawatha, have been given by our Naming Committee or invented by others.
Shape names and range names in factory records are simply CAPITALISED eg BUTTERCUP. To distinguish pattern numbers from shape numbers, shape numbers are preceded by the letter S.


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5 Responses to January 2016

  1. David Macdonald says:

    That Parsienne set was the one that arrived with a damaged cup due to extremely poor packing. The vendor got so frustrated with Ebay that she refunded all of the monies and told me to keep the set. Lucky eh.

  2. David Macdonald says:

    That Parisienne set was the one that arrived with a damaged cup due to extremely poor packing. The vendor got so frustrated with Ebay that she refunded all of the monies and told me to keep the set. Lucky eh.

  3. David Macdonald says:

    Apologies for the double post. Further too the above only one cup had a miniscule chip and the staining came off when washed. So a full set minus one cup smashed in transit and one with a tiny chip all for free. So the vendors poor photo, poor packing and poor description proved to be a bonus.

  4. Carole says:

    Masterspy – you did not text the normal question – ‘Was it you’ regarding Doodle 3920
    its sitting in cabinet along with all the other Cigarette Holders I have!

  5. Helen says:

    Stunning example of Mirage, the only other example I have seen left me cold. This example is great. Whoever got this well done, love to see it in the flesh!

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