COLLECTING: LETTUCE WARE AND OTHER VEGETABLE WARE

 

 

6B673BA9-F89B-4CE7-880D-EBA07408211EAn exquisite tureen handcrafted by Dodie Thayer, the extraordinary Lettuce Ware artisan.

I have mentioned that I do two monthly posts for the Randolph Street Market  one on  fashion the other on collecting/collectibles…Sally Schwartz, Founder of RSM has given me permission to repost when I feel they would fit into my blog.  The following is one of my recent favorites….hope you enjoy it.

        COLLECTIBLES EXCLUSIVELY FOR THE RANDOLPH STREET MARKET
                 LETTUCE WARE COLLECTIBLES (AND OTHER VEGETABLE

Happy Spring and the earth’s rebirth. I was originally thinking I would do an Easter post…you know wonderful little bunnies, perfectly dyed eggs, tulips, wonderful tablescapes and the bounty of the Spring holiday feasts…but how cliché. Yes, I know we all love these signs of renewal but since these posts are about collectibles let’s go a bit outside the box and talk about an area of collecting many of us don’t normally think about….Lettuce Ware and other vegetable ware collectibles.

We can, of course, relate to collecting fabulous pieces of Majolica in the form of vegetables but I am concentrating this account on more modern collectibles…we will save Majolica for another time.
Dodie Thayer (who passed away at age 91 in 2018) cast her life-like pieces, each vein shaped by hand, in her home in Jupiter, Florida. During the 1960’s through the 1980’s the pieces were in demand by Palm Beach Society. C.Z. Guest was a major collector and her collection was sold in 2015 at Sotheby’s for $35,000, original valuation, $3,000.

8B4AF3FC-32C8-4A9F-B54F-62C5F269CBFF

Dodie Thayer looking very Mid-Century Modern with a display of her wares.

 

1D39FCA5-2E24-429C-90F5-9C5EA9228BAD

Some of the C. Z. Guest collection.

F4DE3224-A7F5-4BEE-AD0D-4FB99F5126ED
From one of my favorite blogs The Glam Pad, a C. Z. Guest table setting

C485865E-F051-487F-974A-F1AAA1734B30

A bit about CZ Guest’s Collection in this fabulous book.

EAA332C6-5468-43BB-9300-83F19FCE3DAA

You would have found these charming pieces in the homes of Brooke Astor, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and the Duchess of Windsor among many others.

From the Tory Burch Collection in this cheerful table setting.

E41E1D01-ACBF-461D-BC50-7EFEA53848D1

Having purchased a huge collection from renowned interior designer and collector, Todd Romano, Designer and Lifestyle guru, Tory Burch, became a friend of Thayer that friendship led to a collaboration and Dodie authorized reproductions for the first time. We love when these things happen. Now we can find the beauty of this artisan at non-auction prices. To me this is the perfect subject when you are collecting (of course, at RANDOLPH STREET MARKET), lucky you will be to find an original piece but now you can find the continuation of the work of a true innovator in a 21st century line, which is also now collectible….everything old is indeed new again!!!

More from the Tory Burch Collection.

67134D58-ACCB-4E84-A526-B42AC3E612C3

 

0F57530A-DDFC-466E-A049-BB9DD0CABA2C

Let’s look at a few more pieces and display ideas….from Thayer….

9AE5D8B1-C404-47F9-9983-B4644AD1751F

E7089370-6B9B-49CD-92E4-746A15A8ECDF

7A55E958-D1D6-4DA7-9FB9-BA63C2E3BC2C

A collectors dream…..

B35B19A0-7AC0-4FF3-8836-341DCEBD0C17
Gorgeous Thayer…..

8A8036DA-1885-42D9-A233-1EEDBD9823D0

Now let’s look at a couple of Majolica pieces…yes, I know I said I wasn’t going to do Majolica but couldn’t resist….sorry (not sorry!)

54506115-402C-4487-8C75-5814EC1EEC73

00CFC4C4-B9F4-433B-95F2-C9337D7302EA

FE27EEBD-C96F-4EEF-90BD-61B89670CD4D

CE9AA276-3A13-4C7E-8FCA-BF7468BDBBA2

Other veggies…these from Boston porcelain artist, Katherine Houston, glorious…
Let’s look for something from her at RSM….

 

3B894F51-7414-47C2-80AA-D57A8645AAE4
From my own collection, this charming Katherine Houston pea pod (4”) signed and dated 1997, a Christmas gift that year from a dear friend, Martin Gapshis, miss him terribly….great taste and style!!!

Another gift from Martin this cauliflower small covered bowl (long before the popularity of the veg!) late 1990’s from Vietri, Italian Majolica.

9C116C5F-E47F-4D8F-9BB6-AEEAD513D947

Oh, alright, a couple of bunnies……enjoy Spring!!!!!

BC345941-929E-4BF3-ABD0-0DE2D57556BA

For more information check the comprehensive article in the Wall Street Journal on Collecting Lettuce Ware by Alexa Brazilian July 19, 2013.

                                                
                        LETTUCE SOUP FOUND ON EPICURIOUS.COM
Wouldn’t that be glorious served in a Lettuce Ware bowl…I say yes!

702A569F-1E7C-4C4A-923C-59BC950E6180

Makes 4 servings
ACTIVE TIME
25 min
TOTAL TIME
35 min 
INGREDIENTS
    • 1 cup chopped onions, scallions, and/or shallots
    • 1 garlic clove, chopped
    • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • 3/4 teaspoon ground coriander
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    • 3/4 cup diced (1/3 inch) peeled potato
    • 8 cups coarsely chopped lettuce leaves including ribs (3/4 lb)
    • 3 cups water
          PREPARATION
    1. Cook onion mixture and garlic in 2 tablespoons butter in a 4- to 5-quart heavy pot over moderately low heat, stirring, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add coriander, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Stir in potato, lettuce, and water and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, until potato is very tender, about 10 minutes.
    2. Purée soup in batches in a blender (use caution when blending hot liquids) and transfer to a 2- to 3-quart saucepan. Bring soup to a simmer, then whisk in remaining tablespoon butter and salt and pepper to taste.

All photos, with the exception of the two pieces from my collection, from Pinterest photo credits unknown.

Advertisements