Thursday, March 15, 2012

Irish Belleek



Way back in high school, I worked at Burton’s Jewelers in downtown Laurel. Not only did they sell beautiful jewelry, but they were the go-to business in town for the local bridal registry. I learned a lot about fine china, crystal, silverware and giftware back then. That knowledge still serves me well to this day.


One of the giftware lines that always fascinated me was Irish Belleek china. The tiny pieces of ivory-colored porcelain were feather-light and ultra-translucent. Many of the pieces even had little shamrocks hand-painted on them. So in the 1980’s when Mom decided to take a trip to Ireland and asked me if there was anything I would like for her to bring back, it was a no-brainer to ask for a piece of Irish Belleek.  


She actually came back with two pieces of Belleek for me, a small shell with teeny-tiny feet and the beautiful swan shown above.


This is the mark on the bottom of the swan. The shell is marked the same but is harder to photograph.


Belleek is perfect for a vanity vignette; the swan is shown here with a vintage vanity set (mirror, comb and brush) in green, of course, and a doily of Irish lace.


I could never part with my Belleek so they are not for sale; however, the vanity set and doily are.

If you would like to read a short history about Irish Belleek porcelain, click here. If you have a piece of Irish Belleek and would like to check its date mark, click here.

Are you lucky enough to own a piece of Irish Belleek?


I’m linking to the following parties:

Vintage Thingie Thursday at The Coloradolady
Time Travel Thursday at The Brambleberry Cottage
Treasure Hunt Thursday at From My Front Porch to Yours
Thrifty Things Friday at The Thrifty Groove
Vintage Inspiration Friday at Common Ground
Pink Saturday at How Sweet the Sound

30 comments:

  1. How wonderful that you learned about Belleck porcelain as a high schooler, and have an appreciation for such fine things. I love the vanity brush set, and you know how I love lace. Great post for Vintage Thingy Thursday.

    Today I'm sharing a special post about the 1940 US Census Community Project. I hope you will stop by CollectInTexas Gal and see how this information might be helpful to you...especially if you are interested in your Family's Genealogy...Sue

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  2. I love Irish Belleck. I would love a piece with shamrocks. Someday, hopefully. I did have a large heart shaped dish for many years, found at yard sale. It was beautiful, but alas it broke. I loved seeing your pieces, thanks for sharing!

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  3. Belleck is among my favorites, so delicate and Irish.

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  4. Hi! I'm visiting your blog for the first time through Potporri Friday. I love Belleek china! I've collected a few pieces over the years but my treasures are a Shamrock pattern Belleek teapot and matching cups and saucers I bought on my last trip to Ireland.

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  5. Sherry those pieces are lovely and real treasures since your Mom got them in Ireland. I don't have any Irish Belleek but appreciate its beauty! Hugs, Linda

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  6. Oh! I adore Belleek! My mother had a few pieces and I inherited them, so very charming and precious. Your pieces are lovely.

    Happy VTT!

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  7. You were lucky working in such a place and picking up some great knowledge.

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  8. Ohhh, what pretty pieces of Belleek!

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  9. I remember Belleck. I don't think I have any, but maybe one of my friends registered for it way back when...pretty pieces.

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  10. yes, Belleck is alluring, I only have 2 pieces, could have collected more, but hey., there is only so much one can collect

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  11. These are so pretty Sherry, it's no wonder you want to keep them for yourself. I've never owned any Belleck, but it sure is pretty and so delicate.

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  12. Yes, I am! When hubby and I visited Ireland several years ago, I brought back a small vase with little shamrocks on it. I love it! How nice that your mom brought you not one, but two pieces from her trip!!

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  13. Gorgeous stuff and the story makes it even more special.

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  14. How special is your Belleck! I got a vase when I graduated from HS, I am sure I did not appreciate it enough. Now I have several pieces..my dear MIL gave me some of hers.

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  15. Two very lovely pieces. Your momma surely loves you!~Ames

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  16. Those are so beautiful! I have a thing for tiny swans...
    No, no Belleek here, but I remember Mom talking about Burton's! :)
    Happy weekend to you!
    ~april

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  17. Beautiful, beautiful pieces -- thanks for sharing!

    deb

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  18. The swan is just wonderful. I have looked for a large wooden one for years, but no luck. Thank you for sharing at Potpourri Friday. You participation is always appreciated!

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  19. Beautiful pieces. I received a small piece as a wedding gift, but unfortunately no longer have it.

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  20. Your Belleek pieces are wonderful! and the story of getting them PRICELESS! Of COURSE they would NOT BE FOR SALE!!! "I LOVE BELLEEK"!

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  21. My mother worked in a similar shop that started her love for fine china, and she taught me to love it too. I will have to tell her your story.

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  22. We don't....but now we want to!! Very pretty Sherry!

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  23. I've never heard of this china, but it's so pretty and delicate! How lucky that you got to work at such a fun store.



    Kelly
    (P.S. Check out my latest giveaway!)

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  24. I had a few pieces of Belleck and they were broken during a move. I was so sad. Seeing these pictures reminded me of how much I loved my pieces.

    Very nice!

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  25. No, unfortunately I do not own any Belleek. Beleive me, I am always searching for them! These two pieces are so pretty and dainty. Perfect for a vanity table. Thank you for sharing at TTF and have a wonderful week!

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  26. marylnail@bellsouth.netMarch 19, 2012 at 11:57 AM

    Burton's was the place for Laurel brides! I moved away in 1977, but when I became engaged in 1981, my mother took me to Burton's to register! I received some beautiful gifts and most of my Tiffin crystal from there! Thanks for reminding me of this wonderful place

    Mary

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  27. What wonderful pieces. I have a Belleek Tea mug. I love it!

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  28. Hi Sherry, I love Belleek too, I have a teapot that I found in an antique mall for just a couple of dollars in pristine condition. I'll be featuring this post on VIF tomorrow! xoxo

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  29. I have a larger swan and smaller swan (I set them side by side like a momma and baby). They are marked green. Does anyone know what years they would have been made and how much they are worth?

    I also have a cat with shamrocks with the green mark as well and would like more on that too if you would be so kind as to share that!

    Thanks!
    Kathie

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    1. Hi Kathie! The last paragraph of my post provides a link to help you date your cherished pieces of Irish Belleek. There are photos of the marks so you can compare them with the marks on your Belleek.

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Your comments make me smile....!!!