It was 105 years ago this week when your morning toast might have missed. With the American wheat we relied on being disrupted during World War I, this staple was in danger of running out. Rationing was therefore introduced on February 1, 1917.
I love my bread and I know I’m not alone. One of Britain’s favorite foods, 99% of households buy bread, to the tune of almost 12 million loaves every day.
Breadboards, mixing bowls, rolling pins, baking pans and bread boxes: items related to the making, storing and eating of bread are some of the most attractive pieces in the “kitchenalia” (antique objects and vintage related to the kitchen).
Arm yourself with this lovely mixing bowl and spoon (£5.50) and a cookbook by the fearsome Delia Smith (we always have a decent choice, priced around £5), and you’ll be set mixing things up in the kitchen.
The hardy workhorses of the kitchen, we often take bowls for granted. A good antique or vintage bowl can last for generations and be great to use, whether for cooking, washing up, a useful jar for odds and ends, a fruit bowl or as a planter.
Ceramic bowls offer the collector and cook the widest range of choices, such as yellow ware, first produced in Derbyshire in the late 1700s. At 18 inches wide, these were often pressed into moulds, producing the characteristic vertical or horizontal ridges, baskets and other designs which, along with thick rims and flat bottoms, made them easier to grip and use.
In the 1830s, beautiful yellow ceramic pieces were made in the United States using fine yellow clay found along the banks of New York’s rivers. Use the “tap test” to determine if a piece of yellowware is English or American. If it sounds clear, it’s probably English; if you hear a clunking sound, it was probably made in the USA.
Vintage bowls in jaundice can still be picked up for a few pounds. Prices increase significantly depending on size, age and condition. The most famous example of jaundice is TG Green, made in Derbyshire.
Other classic bowls include Cornishware’s pretty blue and white stripes and Staffordshire’s Mason Cash bowls, which come in an attractive range of patterns and colors (collectors: steer clear of later examples made in Portugal).