Teapots

The teapot part of the collection started somewhat accidentally, when I had to buy a teapot in order to get a cow creamer that I wanted.  Then – just like with the silver and Staffordshire cow creamers – when we moved to England for a couple years, things changed.  I think the one that really got me hooked on cow teapots was Andy Titcomb’s ‘Bull in a China Shop’ (see below…), which we found in a lovely tea shop on Neal Street, just north of Covent Gardens. But then, if it hadn’t been one of his, it probably would have been one of the others.  So now there are over two hundred twenty five, most here, some shown in other theme sections. 

As a reminder, click on any thumbnail for a larger picture.

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2 Carol Myers cow teapots

These two are my favorites.  We bought both in Virginia, one directly from the artisan at a craft fair in  Gaithersburg in 1995, the other in a gift shop in the summer of 2007. They are hand crafted by Carol E. Myers of Chincoteague Island, Va.  She makes a number of other animal teapots as well.  Her shop was closed when we visited the island for a birding trip in 2015, so I’m very glad I bought these while she was still working.

Carol Myers cow teapot

Here’s a third from Carol Meyers, that I got via eBay (much cheaper than in the store or at the fair!). I believe it is an early version since it lacks some of the ‘frills’ of the others and seems to have a somewhat cruder head.


Christy Crews Dunn longhorn and Angus cow teapots Christy Crews Dunn Jersey and Holstein cow teapots

Here are four more very beautiful and well-crafted teapots from another Virginia Artisan,  Christy Crews Dunn of The Sylvan Studios, Keysville (http://ccdunn.startlogic.com).  A friend pointed me to the marvelous hand-thrown and carved ‘effigy’ animal pots on her web site, and unsurprisingly I felt compelled to add her work to my collection. So…I contacted her and commissioned these four teapots – a Texas Longhorn, an Angus bull, and the Jersey and Holstein – as well as two creamers.  These pots are quite large and heavy, so my wife and I elected to drive to Keysville to pick them up after our stay in Chincoteague, and we had a delightful time meeting Christy, learning a bit more about her history and technique, and touring her studio. 

Japanese cow teapot by Kameoka Katushi

This lovely small Japanese red clay teapot was hand-crafted by the noted craftsman Kameoka Katushi, a 4th generation potter of the “Motozo Kiln” in Tokoname, Japan. He is noted for his bonsai pots as well as his fanciful and beautifully crafted teapots. Wikipedia tells us that Tokoname was the location of one of the ‘Six Ancient Kilns’ of Japan, and that pottery from the town dates back to the 12c. Ceramics production and commercial fishing are major components of the local economy.

Folk art caricature cow teapot

This folk-art caricature is also hand-made, but from where and by whom I have no idea.  It came via eBay, and bears the mark “DN86” on the left front leg. 

Dottie Dracos homemade cow creamer


Here’s another intriguing one – hand made by the seller, Dottie Dracos of  Oregon.   I’ve often wondered why more potters didn’t make cow teaots – this may be part of the answer.

2 homemade Aussie cow teapots Australia:  I have purchased quite a number of cow creamers and pitchers both in Australia and from eBay.au, but these two little handmade teapots, from Ron and Lorrie Holmes-Brown of Queensland, are the only ones I know of that were definitely made there. 

Andy Titcomb bull in a china shop cow teapots

Here’s the infamous bull in the china shop, by Andy Titcomb who makes limited-run teapots and salt and pepper shakers at his studio in North Cornwall. They are dated 1994 and we bought the black and white one the year after that while in London. As noted elsewhere, this is the one that started the teapot part of the collection. The brown one is a bit more rare - at least the only one I've ever seen - and it came along quite a bit later. Andy's work is quite lovely and unique, and you can check it out on his web site at www.andytitcomb.com


Brown Titcomb bull teapot, left Brown Titcomb bull teapot, right

Here's an enlarged view of the brown version of the bull in a china shop, showing both sides of this massive and beautiful teapot.


Andy Titcomb cow with milk bottle teapot

This is another lovely cow teapot by by Andy Titcomb, a well fed holstein with milk and cheese on its lid and dated 2006.

Paul Cardew Milka cow teapot

This large (8”x12”) and beautiful cow teapot was an early design of  Paul Cardew’s, dating from the 1980’s when he was trading as South West Ceramics.  He is probably better known among cow teapot aficiandos for his bottles with a cow head sticking out, shown with some more information about him a few sections down. I acquired this lovely “Milka” cow (via eBay) from Sue Blayze of Tea Pot Island. I believe she holds the world record for teapot collections – she has some 6400 of which 1600 or so are displayed and discussed on her marvelous website, www.teapotisland.com.  If you are at all interested in teapots, this is a must-visit site.  She noted that this one is ‘rare’ – I had earlier bought one that broke in shipment (lousy packaging) from a chap who said there were only 250 made – but that it was also made in brown and black.  I suppose this one could go in “the “Advertising” section since it’s a lovely rendition of the Milka purple cow and proudly bears the brand name. For those of you that don’t know Milka, well, you’re missing something very tasty.

Black version of Cardew Milka cow teapot

Here is the black and white version of the ‘Milka’ cow – why two of them?  Well, just like Milka the first one I bought arrived broken, although in this case I was able to decently patch it up.  But when another one came up on offer a year or so later, I was able to work with the seller to arrange safe, if expensive, shipping.

 


Cardew Design 2000 cow bottle teapot Cardew signature on cow teapot prototype

This is the more widely known and available Paul Cardew teapot. The one in front, accompanied by a shot of its base, is the prototype for the “Cardew Design 2000”  (as it says in raised letters on the gold lid) teapot and similar items.  It has pretty blue eyes and light brown horns, which are missing in the commercial versions that followed.  The seller says that his boss acquired this one at a silent auction in 2000 at a Harmony Kingdom Convention in Lake Geneva, WI. It was signed by Paul Cardew at that event.

Cardew Design 2000 Cow teapot, creamer & sugar

Here’s the resulting “Cardew Designs 2000” cow tea set including the sugar bowl and creamer.  From the Cardew Design North America Inc (established in 1999 to increase business in the US and Canada) website we learn that Paul Cardew attended art school at Loughborough University, then taught art part time at Exeter University. He broke into commercial work with successful commissions for ceramic brooches for Harrods and piggy banks for the National Westminster Bank, then launched his teapot designs in 1975 at the Birmingham spring fair. His initial company, Sunshine Ceramics (we learn from Andy Titcomb’s website that Sunshine Ceramics was started by Paul along with his wife Karen, and Hillary Watters and her partner David Symonds, and that Andy joined them in 1978 and left in 1983), transitioned into Cardew Design in 1991, and they entered North American markets in 92. Cardew has designed for a number of well known brands including Portmerion and Royal Dalton, but most famously for Disney for which he did over a hundred designs. The North America company acquired the international rights to the Cardew name and trademarks in 2008, and continues to produce new designs.

two B&W cow hreads out of bottles

Apparently the Cardew teapots were sufficiently popular that they inspired knock-offs, or at least someone else had the same idea. The smaller one simply says "Milk Bottle" but the larger one has "With Milk Please" on one side, and "SWC Teapot Co." on the other, not to mention "made in China".

Milk bottles with cow heads sticking out of them indeed do seem to have been produced by quite a number of companies. I don't know if this is just a natural instinct, or if they were inspired by Paul Cardew, or vice versa. At any rate, the ones with the white head and the blue caricature both just say Milk Jug, while the one on the right proclaims it's for Jersey Full Milk Cream.


John Groth cow teapot, side John Groth cow teapot, front

This ‘beauty’ is signed and marked for John Groth, ’87.  It comes up on occasion on eBay, usually with a high reserve (mine didn’t, thankfully; one of my few ‘good deals’).  He has a web site – johngrothglass.com – that features fused glass and clay, for which he holds a patent.  That site doesn’t give much of his history, but elsewhere I’ve found that he started working in ceramics in 1970, developed a thermal-shock-resistant version of porcelain in 1985, and started fusing glass and clay in 1986.  His web site does show a number of teapots (but not this one) and other ceramic items, but all are dated 1997 or earlier so I assume he now focuses on his fused glass pieces.

Tom Hatton cow teapot and cup Here is magnificent teapot by another well known ceramics artist, Tom Hatton. There are three of his creamers in the ‘Favorite Brands’ page – and here is a matching teapot and cup, dated 1992. The story about him on his web page, www.tomhattonceramics.com, notes that his commercial work began with the American Craft Council in 1983, and that in 1995 he switched to doing more one-of-a-kind pieces. This teapot and cup thus came from his more ‘commercial’ period. Be that as it may, he crafts really fun cows.
1 Here’s the same teapot again, this time with a matching (at least also from 1992) sugar and creamer.
Clay Art's Cow Under the Moon pitcher

This is a very cute and original interpretation by CLAY ART of San Francisco, copyrighted 1993, entitled Cow Under the Moon, and made in China. I have a number of pieces of from them, but the only information I could glean from the web came from a 1997 About.com article http://collectibles.about.com/library/articles/aa061797.htm that notes: “In 1979 Michael Zanfagna and Jenny McClain were teaching at Mission High School in San Francisco, when they decided to build a business of affordable art.” They made salt and pepper shakers, cookie jars, and similar items…obviously including the occasional amusing cow. Are they still in business?


Gzhel cow teapot, side Gzhel cow teapot. front

This is my favorite of the ‘mass produced’ teapots, strange as it may be. I’ve been looking for one by this maker for a very long time.  It’s Gzhel, a high quality Russian ceramic which takes its name from the village and surrounding area of Gzhel southeast of Moscow, that has been producing distinctive blue and white pottery since 1802 (there’s a nice little article about it on Wikipedia, as well as several other descriptions on various web sites).  My wife and I have several lovely pieces of Gzhel that we purchased during our visits to Russia, but I had never seen a cow (though I looked long and hard) until this one turned up on eBay.  The seller notes that she bought it from the Gzhel factory store in Vladivostok while she was at the US consulate there between 2000 and 2002.  I am absolutely delighted to add it to my collection.

Silver and grey cow teapot

This whitish and silver cow bears a slight family resemblance to the Gzhel teapot, but it’s unmarked. It could as easily be some sort of mythical beast as a cow, but of course I had to get a close-up look so couldn’t resist buying it. 


Russian caricature cow teapot, flat top Russian caricature cow teapot, red nose

These two caricatures are also Russian – they came to me from Vologda, but the seller said that they were made by a ‘master’ who came to Vologoda from Moscow, and who has a small workshop. Wikipedia tells us that "Vologda (Russian: Вологoда) is a city and the administrative, cultural, and scientific center of Vologda Oblast, Russia, located on the Vologda River within the watershed of the Northern Dvina. The city serves as a major transport hub of the Northwest of Russia. The Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation has classified Vologda as an historic city, one of forty-one in Russia and one of only three in Vologda Oblast. 224 buildings in Vologda have been officially recognized as cultural heritage monuments."

Two Ukrainian cow teapoots

Not Russia this time, but the Ukraine – from a small company that calls itself Ceramic Wood.  I found these on Etsy – which seems to be a good place for international sellers to reach a wide market.  Cute idea for teapots (they listed them as pitchers), and they come in a wide variety of colors.

Hot Mama cow teapot

This “hot mama” was made in China. Cute, and hard to ship withoput breaking, I found to my dismay.

Cowmen Mooranda cow teapot

Here’s Vandor’s “Cowmen Mooranda” of 1988 in the teapot version – there’s also a large pitcher that’s shown in the Heads theme.

Heather Goldminc cow teapot

This fun caricature comes from Blue Sky Clayworks, and was created by Canadian artist Heather Goldminc. You can read about her and her work on her homepage, www.heathergoldminc.com

Holstein by Heather Goldminc

Heather did more than one cow teapot for Blue Sky, and they weren't all wierd. Not completely realistic, this one, but at least it has all of its parts in the right places. And once you have read about Heather, you can find out more about the company that's located in Ontario, CA and is "Your Source for Exceptionally Designed Ceramic Tabletop Products", at www.blueskyclayrorks.com . If you thought the cow teapots were wild, you should check our some of their others. Pricey, but very nice.

Japanese long necked cow teapot with rhinestones Japanese long necked cow teapot

On the left is another really wild one – complete with rhinestones for eyes, nostrils, and sundry decorations.  This is one of those that no one but a collector could love, so the eBay price was a bargain. I'll confess to cheating a bit with it, since it came without its creamer and sugar and I added a couple tiny cups just so the hooks didn't look foolish. Then several years later, along came the complete one on the right, without rhinestones, and I couldn't resist.  It did however cost $1 more than its partner.

Two Japanese long necked cow teapots or decanters

If you think those are weird, try these. The one with the dark purple head, knobby horns and bulgy red nose (which is actually a stopper) is most likely from Thames of Japan. It still has a couple of the cups that are supposed to hang on the little hooks (these are the ones I ‘borrowed’ for use with the rhinestone long-neck), but also has had a couple of its hooks broken off. Its companion has a hole at either end, and is designed to hold two different liquids. I tried it and it does indeed have two separate compartments. Presumably it originally came with a sugar and creamer like the ones above.

Japanese long nected cow teapot or decanter

This variation on the long-skinny-funny-looking-cow theme comes with 6 cups each stamped “Japan” but with only a single hole, under the nose stopper.  Heavens knows whether it was intended to hold tea, sake, or whatever…

Stoneware cow teapot from Java

This stoneware teapot with brass bells around the neck is entitled “Buffalo and Bird Friends”, and was bought from Novica, which operates in association with National Geographic and sells all kinds of articles crafted by artists and artisans from several countries in South America, Africa and Asia.  This lovely teapot came from Bali or Java and was made (their site informs me) by Tat Yan Soo, who “was born in November 1955.  As a lover of nature and avid gardener, he wanted to create designs that revolved around flora and fauna. He also loves to cook, so he strives to craft products that are decorative, functional and durable.” 

Character Collectibles cow teapot

This floppy eared black and white cow wins the prize for the biggest ceramic bell. It bears a 2001 copyright mark, is called “Oh My Darling Cow”, and hails from “Ontario CA 91761, Handcrafted in China, © Character Collectibles.

Jameson & Tailor cow teapot

I always try to find a cow creamer or teapot when my wife and I take an overseas trip.  I do have a Latvian creamer that I bought through eBay, and thus had high hopes for our jaunt through the Baltic nations, but was devoid of success until near the end, when I found this teapot in a teashop in Vilnius, Lithuania.  Unfortunately it’s not Lithuanian – rather it is marked for “Jameson & Tailor, Artists of the World, strange 200”, a German company whose bilingual website www.jameson-tailor.de proudly states “Tea and coffe (sic) accessories are our passion”.

Small jester cow teapot Jester clown teapot and salt shaker

Here’s a strange one – a cow jester, dressed in a box…accompanied by a salt shaker for some reason, presumably because the other parts of the set got lost. The only sticker on it says ‘hand wash only’, and it’s made from some very heavy material, so I have no idea about its origins.


Egg Tokes cow teapot flat sided B&W cow teapot Spherical body and very long thin leggs cow creamer

Three more fanciful teapots – the one on the left is by “Egg Tokes, ©sigma the Tastesetter”.  A matching creamer and sugar are in the Modern Variations theme.  The other two arrived via eBay (the round one on the right from Calgary Alberta), with no further information.


Homemade teapot with bull heads left Homemade teapot with bull heads, right

This one probably shouldn’t count because it just has cow or rather bull heads rather then the whole animal shape, but it’s homemade…the writing on the bottom looks to me like “Mbiiers”… and rather intriguing. I coudn’t resist.

Cow teapot composed of vegetables

This ‘veggie’ calf is marked for CBK Ltd of Taiwan (to learn more about CBK, check out the aluminum cow creamer near the bottom of page 3 of Modern Variations), and dated 1988;

Khein ceramic cow teapot with bluebird on lid

and this one with the bluebird on its lid and a milk bottle for a spout has a leaf-shaped tag for “Khein Ceramic”.

U*nmarked white cow teapot

This simple pure white lazy teapot is unmarked.

Brown and White cow teapot with rooster on lid

This rather large brown and white cow is also unmarked, but bears a rather colorful roosted on its back.  It came damaged, with a re-glued left ear, but I have never seen another like it.

Signature Home holstein teapot

Here’s a large pretty Holstein decorated with fruit and vegetables from the Signature Home Collection, made in China. I bought this one on eBay in 2004. I liked it enough that a few years later I got a duplicate, complete with box.


Seemingly identical, these three teapots have somewhat different histories. The one on the right, which came to me from Germany, is stamped for “Erphila, Germany” and bears the mold mark 718. Erphila ia the mark used by Ebeling and Reuss, a giftware importer and distributor founded in 1886 in Philadelphia (thus E…R…Phila) and sold to Strathmore Corp in 2002, on porcelain and art work imported from Europe. The Erphila, Germany mark would indicate that it was made by Porzellanfabrik Carl Schumann of Arzburg Bavaria which traces its history to 1876 and closed in 1994 (see PM&M, www.porcelainmarksandmore.com/bavaria/arzberg_2/00.php). Apparently in spite of the Erphila mark it never made it out of Germany, or somehow it made a return trip. The cow on the left bears the same mold mark but also a conjoined “AK” and the word foreign, which indicates it was imported for sale into the UK, which is where I got it. The middle teapot looks very similar but has a different mold mark and is both stamped and has a sticker for Cortendorf, the Bavarian city (today Coburg-Cortendorf) where (from PM&M) Porzellanfabrik Julius Griesbach operated from 1890 until the factory was taken over by Goebel in 1973. Interestingly, most Cortendorf teapots like this were sold unmarked to Ebeling and Reuss, but pretty obviously this one was sold into the US under the Cortendorf label. Not only was this an apparently popular German-made animal teapot, but…

Similar English and a Japanese cow teapot

it was also copied in the UK. Here the teapot on the left, seemingly identical to its German cousins, is stamped for Price Bros England, and clearly marked “Made in England”. The Stoke on Trent Potteries web site tells us that Price Bros. started as an earthenware manufacturer at Crown Works, Burslem from 1896-1903, continued as Price Bros (Burslem) Ltd at Top Bridge Works, Longport & the Albion Works, Burslem from 1903-1961, and became part of Price & Kensington Potteries Ltd, from 1 Jan 62 on. The mark on this treapot was used by them from 1934 till 1961. The Japanese also seem to have gotten into the act with somewhat similar teapots, although their interpretation shown here is simply stamped Made in Japan.

Holstein teraport set

Now for a series of sets – teapots with creamers and sugars, and an occasional pitchers or salt and peppers.   This “Tabletop Set” is made in China, but for an American importer.

KMC black and white cow teapot set

Here’s another Made in China set, marked “©KMC”.  There’s a matching set of storage jars that go with it.

Peaceful Kingdom cow teapot setr

This pretty set, with two teapots/pitchers, is titled “Peaceful Kingdom” and claims to be hand painted faience, “exclusively for ©Seymour Mann, Inc”, dated 1992.  I certainly can’t quibble about its exclusivity, but would wonder if this isn’t a bit of a loose usage of the term faience.


Pudgy caricature cow teapot set Barnyard cow teapot set by Appletree Design

Two other made in china sets, the round guys with the gold bells marked for “©J.S.N.Y.”, and the ‘barnyard’ set with bandannas and chickens on the teapot and sugar from Appletree Design .

Rectangular shaped cow caricature teapot set with checkerboard design

China yet again…this time a strange looking checkerboard caricature, from “Unique Produx, Inc.”

B&W rectangular Dept 56 teapot & C&S

Another black and white rectangular set of teapot, creamer sand sugar. This one is from Department 56, which per their web site began in the mid 1970s as a department in a large retail florist in Minneapolis. They initially specialized in Christmas or snow viillages, later added 'Snowbabies' and over the years have expanded into other giftware and collectible schlock. The history page of their website gives you a year by year breakdown of their expansion, through acquitition by a NY iunvestment firm in 1992 to ultimately became a part of the huge ENESCO falify of 'stuff' peddlers in 2009. They give a nice short history of ENESCO which I copy here: " Enesco's International Headquarters is located in Itasca, Ill. ENESCO was founded in 1958 as the import division of N. Shure Company, one of the largest and oldest general merchandise catalog companies. Following N. Shure's sale to Butler Brothers, the import division reorganized as Enesco Corporation, formed from the phonic spellings of the prior parent company's name initials - N.S.Co. Enesco was sold four times, culminating in 2007 when substantially all of Enesco's assets were sold to Tinicum Capital Partners II, LLP, a private investment partnership. Enesco then became a privately-held company and changed its legal name to Enesco, LLC." They then add that ENESCO was bought by a LA pruvate equity firm, Balmoral Funds, in 2015. Through all of this Dept 56 has kept on keeping on with its seasonal items and snowbabies. They didn't make a lot of cows, but have turned out a few. There is a unmarked pitcher similar to these on that page.


tea set

This set of knitters bears the sticker of Applause, Inc., and was made in Thailand. Applause seems to have had the same sort of ups and downs as a number of other toy and novelty companies, inclusindg Russ Berrie that acquired the name after it went bankrupt around 2004. From what I can make out from a rather confusing short article in Wikipedia, it bagan as the Wallace Berrie Co in 1966, did well with Smurfs in the late 70s early 80s, acquires the Applause name part of Knickerbocker Toys and then changed the company name to Applause Inc. It licensed a number of famous brands, acquired a number of other companies, but ultimately ran out of gas.

Holsteins in green teapot set

This set of farm hands bears stickers on their aprons and bib overalls that announce they are from Coopercraft, Made in England. From poking around on the web, it appears that Coopercraft was best known for dog figurines. They were apparently a brand of Summerbank of 38 High Street Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent, foiunded in 1954 and ultimately dissolved in 2001. This company apparently struggled for a number of years, since the UK records show a number of dissolutions from different addresses in that area. Almost 20 years after I acquired this set, I bought a 'vintage' sugar and creamer (no tea pot this time, and no indication of the maker) from the same mold, shown on that page.

tea set

This handpainted 'Cow in the Corn' set is by Clay Art of 389 Oyster Point Blvd in San Francisco, and was made in Taiwan. Clay Art was founded in 1979 by Michael Zanfagna and Jenny McLain-Doores, and in 2009 was taken over by Renovo, which best as I can tell is a private equity firm founded that year in Dallas that "makes control equity investments in troubled and underperforming companies and other special situation opportunities." The web shows a number of other acquisitions by then, in a variety of fields. I have several other Clay Art pieces including some stacked animals, all made somewhere in SE Asia. They were apparently best known for masks made to hang on walls, from the few snippets available on the web.

corn themed B&W cow teapot

No accompamnying creamer and sugar with thi one, but it does stick with the corn theme. It came in a box marked “Kitchen Basics Novelty Teapot, Imported & Distributed by Port-Style Enterprises Inc, Markham, Ontario, Canada, Made in China”.

Trippie's cow apple grower teapot set

Yet another farmer – apple growers this time.  They’re from Trippie’s, Inc, and were made in China.  For some reason I keep forgetting that I have this set – I have ended up with three of the teapots, the last one bought at (of all places) Rock City on the top of Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga, TN.  I guess I was bewitched by their fairies.

Loblaw's Cow Chef teapot set

Loblaws Inc of Canada designed this cute Chef  set (French Chef of course), © 2007 and stamped “Life@Home and La vie @hez soi”, ‘spring meadow’ théière (Produit de Chine, of course…). Loblaws started in 1919 in Toronto as something new for the time – a ‘groceteria’ which combined self-service and cash and carry. They weathered hard times by introducing many innovations (including No Name products, President’s Choice, banking, and more recently Joe Fresh Style clothing), and today operate a successful chain of ‘market’ stores. For us Yanks that aren’t familiar with them, there’s a fun history of this innovative company on their great web page at www.loblaws.ca. I’d like to thank them for one of the neatest cow teapot sets I’ve seen in quite awhile.

Andrea by Sadek cow teapot setr

This set comes from Andrea by Sadek, per their web page: “also known as the Charles Sadek Import Company or j. willfred, Andrea by Sadek is a product line with over 2,000 products in 20 categories.” They were made in China. There are several other cows from this gift and tableware company scattered through out the web site.

Flat faced cow teapot set with cups and saucers

This flat-faced group is part of a “Grandeur Gift Set” by “TOP maestro”, made in China. In addition to these pieces the set contains 4 cups and saucers. 

Heavy older ceramic white cow teapot set

This unmarked, though likely post-war Japanese, set is of very heavy ceramic.  The teapot still bears a few signs of black cold paint.

Large red-nosed cow teapot set with huge S&P

This set, which has a huge salt and pepper as well as the pitcher, sugar and creamer, bears an impressed “Japan” on the base.  It would appear to be designed to resemble the cows popularized by geo. z. lefton, see the Brands theme. 

Otagiri Formal Cow with red bow tie teapot set with cups and S&P

This pristine, never used set that’s about a decade or more old comes complete with salt, pepper and cups and is marked for Otagiri.  Another one of the teapots and the little girl creamer were in the ‘Brands’ theme where that company was described.  I got those two separately, but was pleased to be able to get a full set.


Small grey cow teaset with heads on handle Small brown and white cow teapot set

Here are two older sets with heads on the handles – one with pudgy water buffalos, the other with cows. They're unmarked, but I’d guess both sets are from the same factory and that they are early post-WWII Japanese.

Thames of Japan black cow teapot nstack

Yet another older Japanese set - this one bears a sticker from Thames of Japan. Sort of cute, but awkward to use. They must have been fairly popular in their day because they come up not infrequently on Ebay.

Older Japanese cow teapot set

This is another interesting old Japanese made tea set, with just heads for the creamer and sugar.  It has a rectangular blue sticker with a white rim and “Japan” in white.

Lady cows with pearls and fancy hats teapot set

These ladies in their pearls and fancy hats – teapot, pitcher and creamer - bear a made in China sticker.  They came from Australia via eBay.

Eliz Brownd black and white cow teapot and creamer by Otagiri

These are from Otagiri, now one of the Enesco brands of ceramic collectibles.  The design is copyrighted for Elizabeth King Brownd, and they were manufactured in Malaysia.  As noted in Favorite Brands, Oragiri has produced quite a few cow creamers over the years.

Fiona Stokes coiws with red sneakers

Two more from Otagiri, these made in Japan. They are marked for 'Fiona Stokes, J. Papel'. A quick web search turns up a cow mug and a cow on a music box also wearing the red moon sneakers. It also seems that Fiona Stokes-Gilbert is a Los Angeled based designer of cunsumer products and textiles. I think this is her only cow. I don't understasnd the S. Papel bit, but it seems to be attached to the red sneakers items only, best I can tell.


Cow farmer in green overalls teapot Boy asleep in haystack cow teapot with cups

The hefty round headed farmer in the green overalls is marked from the “Down Home Collection Made Exclusively for Roshco in the Philippines ©1995”.  Little boy blue, asleep in the hay with accompanying tiny cups, is from Department 56, and was made in China.

Three cow farmer teapots Two cow farmer teapots

More farmers – two with corn, one with carrots that have endeared him to the little rabbit, an ugly pug-nosed one with flowers (marked “Young’s, China”) and one in blue overalls that's just sort of standing there (Savoy Housewares, made in China).

Happy Holstein being milked teapot

This unmarked white and black cow seems to enjoy being milked.

Two barn teapots with cow heads sticking out

These two cows seem to have outgrown their barns.  The one on the left has a blue and white sticker from “The Manual Woodworkers and Weavers Inc” (what they’re doing with a cow in a barn is beyond me), and the one on the right is impressed with “Mercuries 1994” and has a gold Mercuries, Allentown, Pennsylvania, Made in China sticker. A web search failed to find any remains of Mercuries, but MMW as the Manual Woodworkers and Weavers of western NC is now branded, and which has been in business since 1932, has been run since 2008 by the third generation of the founding Oates family. They now claim to be the nation's leading supplier, manufacturer and distributor of printed and woven textile based products, and even have a facility in Germany to serve international customers. No more cows in barns can be expected from them, but there seems to be an offshoot called 'Manual' that has a huge catalog with all kinds of stuff including ceramics, so I guess there's still hope.


paint it yourself cow with shell horns teapot 1paint it yourself cow with shell horns teapos 2 Light blue smiling cow caricature teapot

The teapots with what look like shells for horns are paint-it-yourself ceramics. Some people are better artists than others.  The light blue ceramic teapot sort of resembles them.    

Mr and Mrs Farmer each have their own bawling calf. I got him many years before I found her - and initially wasn't quite sure what he was doing to the poor little animal.

Russ Berrie cowboy with guitar and Omnibus Blue Brothers Sax player cow teapots

Here are a couple musicians, but I bet they don’t play in the same band.  The cowboy with guitar is copyrighted for Russ Berrie Co., and was made in China. There is a creamer and sugar that I think may accompany it, but they don’t have instruments.  The Blues Brothers saxophonist comes from Omnibus, ©OCI, and was made in the Philippines in 1993.

Taiwan cowboy cow teapot

This happy cowboy, done with a fair amount of detail, hails from Trans-World Associates, Inc. For those who may wish to visit, they’re located at 2f, No.20, Min Chuan West Road, Taipei , ROC , and their web site (www.transworldinc.com) proudly notes that they have “been manufacturing sundry goods since 1965. We mainly export giftware, housewares, bathroom accessories, garden supplies, lighting covering ceramics, wooden ware, glassware, plastic ware, and metal goods. In view of our steady increase in business, long experience, sound organization and efficient service, our company has won a good reputation among our overseas customers…Trans-World Associates is a specialist in product invention and development. We employ a knowledgeable team of more than 100 people who creates an average of 150 new items annually.”

French dairy farmer cow teapot

Zis vache ees ze French producteur de lait…or so she appears to be, sporting a pink beret with blue overalls. Made in China, of course.

Natty gentleman cow creamer

We have to cross the Channel to England for this natty gentleman. At least, that’s where he came from to my collection (though I suspect he wasn’t made there)

Mary's Moo-Moo teapot
Back to the US for at least the designer of this one, albeit it's an Enesco product, made in Taiwan in 1993. It's by Mary Rhyner-Nadig who designed a whole flosk of her "Moo-Moos", but as far as I know no creamers and only this one teapot. The rest seem just to be kitchy figurines. There's a collectoir;s club although they are only on facebook and I don't do that so can't tell you any more about it or her, except that they are no longer in production.


Ombibus cow waiter in black suit teapot Omnibus cow waiter in grey suit teapot

These waiters are from Omnibus OCI 1994, and I think they bear a certain resemblance to that company's sax player that's a few sections above. These two are obviously from the same mold - but I was intrigued by the one in the grey suit becaiuse all the others that I have seen are like the chap on the left.  

Dancing cows teapot with c&s

This hefty dancing pair is from The Good Company, a division of Applause, Inc.  It’s dated 1989 and was made in Korea. The accompanying creamer and sugar are in their best duds.

Susan Winget cow on wheels with cat teapot

This cow on wheels tolerating a cat comes from the Certified International Corporation, © Susan Winget, and was made in Thailand.

red and white cow teapot

This is just a nice simple red and white cow teapot with a spherical body, marked only "A3".

Big cow teapot with chef's hat and overalls

This is “Sunshine”, or so it’s inscribed on the bottom…made in Taiwan.  I must admit I don’t get the connection between the name, the chef’s hat, the overalls and the pitchfork. Not the world’s most beautiful cow teapot, but it is big…

Kelly Theodore's Cornwallis the Cow teapot

As the purple tag says, this is Cornwallis the Cow Teapot, copyright 2002 from KT and TEG, Made in China. On the other side it says ENCORE presents Kelly Theodore creations. Cornwallis is all ready for a picnic.

Pudgy girl cow with basket teapot

This pudgy girl shopper bears a green and gold sticker for Gempo Giftware. She also is stamped for Japan and has an impressed crown.

Beatrix Potter's Peter Rabbit teapot with cow creamer, rabbit sugar

It was the cow creamer that induced this purchase – albeit it’s a lovely Peter Rabbit rendition in its own right.  The Beatrix Potter figures were initially made by Beswick (see Favorite Brands), but they were bought by Royal Doulton in 1969.  This set dates from 1998.


Fitz&Floyd hot pepper cow teapot Large Grey & White cow teapot

This hot-pepper teapot was featured in the introductory section. It’s from Omnibus by Fitz and Floyd, and was made in Indonesia.  There’s a matching creamer and sugar.  The large white and grey teapot is unmarked.

Debenham's Fun at Breakfast cow teapot

This teapot is entitled “Fun at Breakfast” and was made in Thailand ‘exclusively’ for Debenhams, the UK Department store. 

Roman's Patchwork pattern cow teapot

No, it’s not a pig, it really is a cow…you can tell because it has horns. There is, however, a pig version which looks very, very similar…both by Roman, in their Patchwork Giftware line. Roman, Inc. is an Illinois-based producer and distributor of giftware and accessories.

Lumpy cow decorative teapot

This lumpy cow with flowers and a baby riding on top was made in China for Collections, Inc. Although it’s sort of cute I’m not overly pleased with it, for two reasons – first it’s marked ‘for decorative purposes only’ – and what good is a teapot in which you can’t make tea? And second, it’s poorly made – when it arrived, the lid wouldn’t fit properly on to the pot. I had to do a bit of surgery with a dremel tool to get it to fit.

Ucagco purple cow teapot

Although unmarked, I’m almost positive that this purple and yellow caricature comes from Ucagco, made in Japan.  There are three sets of Ucagco cows as well as a bit of information about the company about halfway down on the sugar and creamers page, as well a  fair number of their cow creamers scattered through the Modern Variations pages.  While they used several different molds, all are more or less similar in style, with the bulgy eyes, bulbous nose, and a rope and bell around the neck. 


Zow Cow teapot purple spotted cow teapot with tree on top

Zow Cow, the three-piece black and white spotted ‘tea for one’ lid, pot and large cup, came from Italy in summer ’07.  Its box informs us it’s “Zoo tea, Teiera e tazza in ceramica dipinta." The little purple and white cow with the tree on its back was made in Taiwan; I’ve had it since ’95, and umpteen years later I still don't pretenbd to understand it. 


Two cow caricature teapots Cracker Barrell and printer cow teapots

The sitting-up black and white cow with the blue rope that’s demonstrating how big a fish he caught is from Young’s, China.  The little lady with the asparagus licking her nose and the painter in the blue zip-up coveralls are unmarked; but the brownish and black creamer with stubby grey horns and a belt around the neck, that’s about to be painted yellow, is copyrighted for Cracker Barrel, and was made in China.


Two lady cow teaports Paint it yourself and bisque cow lady teapots

Here are three ladies.   The one with big ears and the red apron hails from China, and her diminutive companion with the basket of flowers is unmarked. On the right are two 'paint it yourself' versions, one ready for me to take a hand to it. This one has also been produced commersially, and you might recognize her as being from the same mold as the Coopercraft farm-scene lady dressed in green shown earlier along with a creamer and sugar..


pig/cow/cat teapot stack cow-pig-chicken teapot stack by Clay Art cow-sheep=hen teapot stack

Following the farm ladies, here are the animals they tend, all "barnyard stacks". The cow that’s squished between the pig and the cat on a cushion is by Highland Arts. In the middle image, the black and white cow bearing the sprawled pink pig and spotted chicken is from Clay Art’s 1992 “Stacked Animals Series”, made in the Philippines. The black and white cow with the red bow and blue bell that's giving a lift to a sheep and hen is copyrighted for E.K.Brown, and is by Otagiri, Japan. 


Cow tea for one and cow-pig-rooster stack teapots

  Here's another barnyard stack, this time with a big pink pig with flowers on its butt and a standing rooster on its back, on top of a cow that seems to have been forced to its knees by the heavy load. It is by Figi Graphics of San Diego, dated 2001, and was made (guess where?) in China.  It's facing off against a black and white cow with a pink nose and bandana and a brown chicken roosting on her back that's a tea-for-one pot and cup.  It’s from Certified International Corporation, also made in China.

P&K tea for one teapot & cup

This and the next few pictures include a number of tea-for-one cups and pots.  This one is from Price and Kensington, one of the traditional potteries of  Stoke on Trent. Its tag says that P&K is part of the Arthur Wood Group; trying to find them on the web, it turns out that they in turn have been acquired and are now part of the Rayware Group  (www.rayware.co.uk).  There has apparently been a lot of consolidation and re-shuffling (along with closures) in British ceramics in the last few years. The Rayware web site notes that the Arthur Wood Company was founded in 1884, and that the origins of the Wood family go back over 250 years to the famous master potters Ralph and Enoch Wood. 

3 Tea for one cow teapots with cups Cow tea for one and sitting cow teapots

The cup/pot in the middle, with the crossed eyes and ears sticking out, is marked for Bella Cassa , by Ganz.  The calves flanking it are unmarked, but have companion pig and bunny versions. There’s a very similar one – only the cup is different – in the other picture, next to an unmarked ceramic cow whose lid is the top of its head.

Matching cow tea for one and large cow pitcher

The tea-for-one on the left with the ever-popular rooster on its back is standing next to a pitcher in the same pattern, by Dennis East International, Inc, ©2002, Made in China.

Clay Art tea for one cow teapot & cup Two similar tea for one cow teapots with cups

Here are three more ‘tea for one’ sets – the one with the daisies is from Clay Art of San Francisco, © 1994, Made in Sri Lanka. The ones with a bucket for a spout and corn around the bottom are a good example of similar molds in use by more than one potter. The one on the right has “Paula” written on the bottom along with a light green sticker that reads “BP, Paula’s Place”. The one on the left bear an impression for “© GARE Inc 96”.  Apparently the copyright expired, or Paula chose to ignore it. Whatever, it’s a rather cute little teapot.

Two Cows on Parade teapots

These two are, as far as I know, the only teapots from Cows on Parade. “Where’s the Beef” is on the left, and “Fruits of Summer” on the right.  They’re marked “©2000 CowParade Holdings Corporation, China”.

Two Moorland cow teapots

The orange and white teapot on the bumpy brown base is by Moorland, from “Staffordshire, Chelsea Works Burslem, England”.  A black and white version, along with a matching creamer, is shown in Favorite Brands. Moorland pottery was established in 1990, and they have since been restoring their old factory and bottle kiln. From their website they seem to specialize in personalized mugs from around the UK, with a few other things thrown in. The splotchy blue teapot, which appears to be from an identical mold, is unmarked, but is presumably also one of theirs..

3 teapots

These two smiling caricatures it are both from Wood Pottery of Burslem.  As noted above, the Woods of Burslem date back to the three brothers Ralph, Aaron and Moses, born in the early 1700s.  The potteries web (www.thepotteries.org) site has quite a bit of information about them (and many other famous Staffordshire potters…and it lists some 32 Wood’s, including a Tony Wood whose studio produced a number of creamers in my collection…at any rate, more than enough Woods to thoroughly confuse me), including the tidbit that “Wood & Sons called in the receivers in February 2005.” 


Two black and white cow teapots with birds on lids Two B&W cow teapots with birds on their lids

Some black and white cows have birds - rooster and chicken to the left, little blue birds to the right. The cow with the blue collar hosting the rooster is from Midwest Importers of Cannon Falls, Inc (made in Taiwan). It's accompanied by the little tea-for-one shown earlier, by Certified International Corporation.   The dark blue bird is on a cow that likes grapes from Wang’s International Inc, dated 1993 and made in China; and the blue and yellow bird is on a happy little cow from Albert E Price Products of Bellmawr, NJ (made in China).

3 Cow Teapots wearing bandanas

Some cow teapots wear bandanas…the one on the left with the yellow bandanna is from "Cook’s Club, Quality & Design, Taiwan". It's neighbor with the red bandana is also from Taiwan, but the one standing in grass is unmarked…

Three made in China cow teapots

Here are three more made-in-China teapots, two with bandannas; the middle one is marked for “Oriental Eagle”.  The one on the right, with the red bandanna, matches a creamer and sugar from Trippies, Inc. that I bought separately sometime later.  It has to be a bit uncomfortable since its udder is sticking out on both sides as well as in front.

Three cow teapots with birds on lids

More cows with birds.  The one on the left is entitled “Darjeeling Bessie Teapot”.  In the center is a teapot from Potpourri Designs (can only fins fashion places with that name on the web), and on the right is “Priscilla the Cow” by Peter Mook, whose name is incised in gold in the cow’s side. According to his website, Peter is an English freelance sculptor from Southport,carving large statues as well as being an approved sculptor for the likes of Disney, Warner Bros and Marvel.

Three sitting up cow caricature teatpots

Here are three sitting-up cow caricatures, all wiearing something around their necks to help them look dressy.  The one with the yellow necktie is by Standard Specialty Company, made in Taiwan. 

Three lying down cow teapots

Three kneeling cows here.. The little one on the left with the white daisies on her lid is from Andrea by Sadek, made in Japan.  I may have provided this info elsewhere, but...a web search yields "Andrea by Sadek, (pronounced AN-dree-uh by Say-dek), also known as Charles Sadek Import Company or J. Willfred is headquartered in New Rochelle, New York. The company was founded in 1936 by Charles and Norman Sadek and is still owned and operated by the Sadek family. Currently [circa 2019] Charles' son, Jim, his wife, Sandra manage the day-to-day operations with a faithful staff of customer service reps, shippers, designers and product developers. The namesake of the company, Andrea, is Jim's sister and Charles Sadek's daughter; she is heavily involved in the design of Sadek's products." In the middle is “Sweet Bessie’s Bouquet, © 1996 Karen Bell, Licensee, Giftcraft Inc, 14120, Handpainted in China”.  Per a web site in her name Karen Bell is a ceramic sculptress from Arizona who specializes in reptiles and amphibians. At least that's what the web turned up. Maybe there is another Karen Bell, or maybe Sweet Bessie the cow is actually an amphibian in disguise. Mystery. Nice pteapot at any rate. The lovely cow on the right is marked “Design by Greg M Vale for Martinvale, Made in China." Yer another trip to the web tells us that Greg Martin Vale is an artist from Kiama New South Wales, and that Martinvale has for over 30 years been a NSW supplier of gift and housewares. One assumes from the similarity of names and location that there is some connection.

Sitting cow caricature teapot with hair bow Smiling round glossy cow teapot with chicken oin lid Bulbous nosed cow teapot with pointy legs

These three don’t really have much in common except for the lack of marks. The one with the flat nose, somewhat reminiscent of a couple of the sitting up dressy ones a couple sections above, is of rather light and thin ceramic. The smiling cow caricature with the bandanna and a chicken taking a ride is heavy porcelain with a lovely glossy glaze. It does bear the usual – these days – ‘Made in China’ sticker.  The unmarked bulbous nosed one on the right came with salt and pepper shakers that have since been relegated to a closed box.

Cow teapot with fly on lid

This is a rather nice if unmarked interpretation that deserves a little section of its own because it's the only teapot in my collection that has a fly on the lid. Schuppe would be proud. Also, interestingly, it met my initiaL rule of <$10.

The cow carrying its calf claims to be a "Special Issue for "APEX", Made in China. The sort of spherical one with the pink flower necklace was also made in China but apparently isn't as special. On the right,the little gal with the pink bow came to me from the UK without further information expcept for a silver "Made in Taiwan" sticker.

Chubby Cow Tea Kettle and box Three chubby cow teapots

The ‘earthenware, Chubby Cow Tea Kettle’ is marked for J.S.N.Y. China.  Its three chubby neighbors are, from left to right, from Taiwan (with a mark of two hands around a flower, and S and E above the hands); from China, ©Popular Creations 2003; and unmarked, but having come to me from Queensland, Australia.


Chubby cow teapot with bulbous red nose Spherical cow teapot with tiny horns Funky Animals english cow cariucature teapot with big orange nose

Yet more chubby, indeed round cow teapots .The one with the bird and big bulbous red nose has a bright oval yellow and maroon sticker that reads  "tii Collections, D7097 Ceramic Cow w/Bird Creamer, Handcrafted in China for Transpac, Vacaville, CA".  The one with the orange noise that's either flying or so fat its hooves don't reach the ground is English, by "Funky Animals" of Daventry, NN11 1AB.  Probably quite an embarrassment to its dignified Staffordshire ancestors.   The spherical one with small head and miniscule brown horns is unmarked.

Caricature black and white cow teapot with simple flowers

And another, this one Made in China but bought from an Australian seller.

Chubby caricature cow teapot with big nose and double bell

Yet another Made in China, unusual only in that she has a double bell.

Two happy pudgy cow teapots with bugs on lids

These two are beyond chubby – pudgy, maybe. Neither is marked.

Two spherical cow teapots with calves on lids

Cows with cows – two interpretations of calves getting a lift from Mom.  The one on the left is from EDC, Made in China; the other is unmarked

Three thick ceramic cow teapots with cold paint

.The two larger standing caricatures, onein grass next to a matching smaller sitting up creamer and the other with white stars for a necklace, are made of very thick ceramic. They are all colored with what is called ‘cold paint', meaning applied over the glaze; thus it rubs off easily. Although unmarked, from the nature of the paint and the material, I’d guess they were fairly early post-WWII Japan.


kneeling b&w cow teapot Sttting up, 'praying' b&w cow teapot 2 B&W cow teapots

Black and white cow teapots here. The well made one on the left is marked for Otagiri, Made in Japan. One of their nicer pieces I think. In the middle is a cheaply made one that seems to me praying, marked only with an impressed "M" (or "W" depending on how you turn it). On the right, the one with the pink nose and inside ears was 'Made in Taiwan Expressly for R.H.Macy & Co. Inc'. Its quite similar companion is unmarked.

One winsome and one strange cow teapot

The winsome looking fat hornless cow on the left is unmarked. Its neighbor, whose white horns are curled forward and touch in the middle making its head look flat, has Japan inscribed on the base and at one time bore a green sticker on its rump that proclaimed it is Old MacDonald by Westwood.  The only Westwood I’m aware of is Westwood Ware of California, active in the 1940s and 50s – but their goods were all made in California as far as I know, so this maker remains a mystery.

Small French Editions Atlas cow teapot

This quite small caricature bears a decal that reads “Editions Atlas Collections” and came to me from France. From a web search we learn from www.closinglogos.com that "Editions Atlas is a French company specialized in collections and mail order. It was founded in 1954, but got their current name in 1975. They were purchased by Italian multi-national company De Agostini. They released magazines about various subjects, such as cinema, travelling, model construction, history, geography, photography, and many others." As is often the case these days, in the US as well as from other countries, the postage cost more than the cow.

Miniature cow teapots, a farmer and a lady with a cake Three miniature cow teapots

Here are two photos of small or miniature teapots.  In the shot to the left the smallest one, the farmer with the milk bottle, is less than 3” tall. He bears a smnall stricker for Young, China. His companion holdinga cake for a spout is impressed with EPL. Both of these were also shown at the bottom of the Miniatures page. The photo on the right - dancing holsteins, couch sitting reader and cylindrical caricature with a bandana, are all unmarked.


Cow teapot with purple hat lid small cow teapot with pink nose and big yellow horns

More small teapots. On the left the chap with the purple hat proudly announces that it was distributed by Dolgencorp Inc of Goodlettsville, TN albeit made in China. A quick trip to the web reveals that Dolgencorp LLC is a subdidiary of Dollar General Corporation, founded in 1973, a discount retailer of basic consumer goods across the US. I've been in plenty of their stores, especially in the south, but never knew that they distributed a cow! The one with a pink nose and bulgy yellow horns simply has a sticker that says Made in Taiwan. The one by itself is unmarker.


Two small cow teapots Small cow teapot with blue bandanna

TThe sort of semi-spherical teapot on the left with the yellkow bell bears a raised copywrite mark for "Bolke, 1991". I can find a couple 'Bolke's' on the web, but none of the photos of their work bear even the slightest resemblance to this piece.nIts companion sporting the little yelow duck had "SOU'WESTER - $9.95" on the price tag, plus a couple blue stickets that read Giftcraft, China". The one standing by itself is unmarked.

Copco and Kammenstein whistling cow tea kettles

These are metal whistling tea kettles, quite widely available.  The one on the left is Copco’s “Mrs. Moo”, and the one on the right from Kammenstein. Both are made in Taiwan. 

Supreme Housewares mooing tea kettle

I found this one in the fabulous Old Forge Hardware Store in the NY Adirondacks. Its box says, “Supreme Housewares, Made in Taiwan”. I tried it, and when the water boils it does indeed say “moooo…”, albeit at a rather high pitch. They also make them shaped as roosters, giraffes, and mallards. Their (wholesale only) website states “Supreme Housewares contain products that are never ordinary and always entertaining. About 14 years ago (meaning @1996) the vision of Supreme Housewares began by Michael Chen (CEO), who devotes time and product development to new products each year”. They operate out of Fremont, CA.

Another Supreme Housewares tea kettle

It turns out that Supreme Housewares makes cow tea kettles in more than one style. This one is shown with its head up.

Teapots with cow head on front and on top

I generally have tried to avoid teapots with just pictures of cows – but the head of one on on the left is sticking out so it sort of counts, and the one on the right came as part of a set with a couple pitchers.

Thames brown cow head teapot and Lipper & Mann cow head teapot with creamer and sugar

My wife thinks these are extremely ugly, and I find it hard to argue with her.  But beauty isn’t one of the criteria for the collection, so…they’re here, even though near the end of this theme.  The brown one, although unmarked, is most likely Thames of Japan based on the red clay, frosted brown coloring and gold knobs on the horns. The white and purple set with the big flat red noses bears the red and gold stickers of  “Lipper and Mann Creations, Japan”.  This company was founded in April 1946 as an importer of glass and ceramics from Czechoslovakia and other European companies. They had a showroom on 5th Avenue in NY, and sold to department stress and other retail outlets.  They began importing from Japan in 1947, and I’d imagine that this set dates from around then. There was a period when ugly was popular… Mr. Lipper bought out Mr. Mann in 1963, and the company since then has been Lipper International; their website from which I derived this info is www.lipperinternational.com.

Blue Moon Cow over the moon teapot set in bob

Dept 56 cow overv the moon teapot set, front

Dept 56 cow over the moon teapot set, back

Wang's International cow over the moon teapot

These cow-jumped-over-the-moon teapots don’t meet my criteria and I wouldn’t have gotten them if there was only one version, but as you can see there are at least three.  Hey diddle diddle is popular with kids, so these were most likely designed for children’s teas.  From top to bottom they are from Blue Moon (complete with tea), Dept 56 (front and back), and Wang’s International. 

Teapot with cow head for lid marked for Holland

I never should have bought this one – don’t usually go for ones with just the head of a cow – but I guess I was intrigued by the fact that something as hokey as this would be marked “Holland”. And sure enough, on the base it says “Blue Delft, Deco, Handpainted, Holland”.  At 5 GBP it was cheap enough, although the shipping cost was horrendous.

Red japanese cow caricature teapot

Here begins an area with a number of oriental teapots - first a couple most likely from Japan, then three from what's probably India or Southeast Asia, then a whole bunch from China. This lovely Japanese (I think) interpretation came from an antique mall in Annapolis, MD. Can anyone help with the writing?

Meiji japanese cow caricature teapot

This beautiful Japanese cow porcelain teapot was soldas Meiji, pre-1893. The antique dealer seemed to know what he was talking about - it's certainly high quality, unlike anything from recent eras. I was also features on the 'places' page as a fine example of Japanese ceramic art.

Small unglazed water buffalo with bird on lid teapot

This small and very nicely crafted water buffalo teapot with a bird on its lid that’s lashed to its tail with a red macramé string is fashioned from hard dark clay and is chased in an interesting pattern.  It’s quite small and could serve as a creamer, but it’s much more likely that it was designed to hold tea.  It has oriental writing – Japanese I believe – on the bottom.

Blue and white mythical cow teapot

Here is an unmarked, sacred or mythical cow. It looks to me like it might be from India or Indonesia.

Kneeling blue and white water buffalo teapot with bird on lid

This is definitely a water buffalo – it came to me from Australia (via eBay), so although it’s unmarked, and very heavy ceramic, I suspect that it was probably made in Indonesia, Thailand, or somewhere in that vicinity.

White water buffalo with gold horns teapot from Sri Lanka

This recumbent bull is clearly marked: “Pure Ceylon Tea packed in Sri Lanka by MlesnA (Ceylon) Ltd, Manufactured by Lanka Porcelain (PVT) Ltd, Sri Lanka”. And indeed, it is full of tea. Hitting the web, we find that "Noritake Lanka Porcelain Private Limited is the pioneer porcelain tableware manufacturing conglomerate in Sri Lanka. The Company was established in 1972 as a joint venture company between Ceylon Ceramic Corporation and Noritake Co., Limited of Japan. Noritake Co., Limited of Japan is a hundred years old company which markets tableware under the brand "Noritake" all over the world. The Company's production facility is located in Matale where country's rich minerals such as quartz, feldspar and dolomite deposits are spread."


2 fancy Chinese teapots Top of the 2 fancy Chinese teapots

We now start the part of the page that has a number of Chinese cow or water buffalo teapots, with these two that were arso featured on the Places page, along with their marks. To reiterate a bit, the one on the right, which I bought in Lisbon., dates from around 1880 and bears a "PIN" or Precious Treasure mark along with that of its factory. The one on the left is a quite modern version (they seem to be quite popular, numerous on ebay from both sides of the Atlantic), made in the year of the dragon (likely 1988) in a factory that used older blanks or molds and specialized in products for expats.


Small clay Chinese teapot with water buffalo heads for spout and lid Small clay Chinese teapot with water buffalo heads for spout and lid, bottom and lid Two small metal Chinese teapots with water buffalo heads for spouts and lids

I suspect that these and most that follow have been produced for the tourist trade rather than actual use, albeit at least one – further down the page – has certainly seen some hard use.  The little pots shown here seem to be a quite popular shape – what appears to be a water buffalo head for the spout, and another with curled horns for the lid.   I have two metal ones, as well as the one in dark green clay.

Chinese rotund metal cow teapot with water buffalo on lid

This one is definitely a bulgy-eyed cow (or bull), with a water buffalo on the lid. It came straight from Beijing (via eBay), at the price of $.01…but with a shipping cost of $43. Worth every penny, as they say.

Modern Chinese clay water buffalo teapot and padded box

I think this is a quite lovely modern Chinese interpretation…and it came in its own padded box.

Mean-looking Chinese water buffalo teapot

This Chinese one is also boxed, but is hardly lovely.  It’s very heavy, of some unidentifiable grey material – and the ‘cow’ or water buffalo has a body that’s very rat-like.  It’s about the meanest cow in the barn, from the looks of the teeth.  Truly weird.  And it came to me from Australia.

Two small Chinese yixing clay cow teapots

The lovely, simple little Yixing purple clay teapot on the right here came to me from Hong Kong. Yixing clay teapots are quite popular these days because their unglazed surfaces absorb traces of the tea, creating a more complex flavor…but for that same reason they should always be used with the same variety of tea, and never washed with soap. This type of clay derives its name from the location where it’s found, a region near the city of Yixing in Jiangsu Province. The Wikipedia article about it states that its use dates back to the Song dynasty. Its companion teapot on the left arrived from a much less exotic place – Texas – although the seller was Chinese. It’s delightfully unusual in that the cow or water buffalo head embellishes the handle rather than serving as a spout.

Small Chinese yixing clay cow teapot

This one has the same face as the one above that has the head on the handle, but here it serves the normal function of a spout.


Stylized Chinese red clay water buffalo teapot Modern Chinese red clay cow teapot

Here are two additional red clay Chinese teapots (shipped from Beijing), both with interesting modern shapes and featuring a stylized figure with a conical hat on the lid.

Chinese red clay and plastic amber water buffalo teapots with napping boys on lids

These are two identical and fairly large interpretations of the reclining water buffalo with  a napping boy on its back.  One is of dark red clay, and the other was sold as ‘amber’ – yeah, sure…amber colored plastic that is. The clay one came from Beijing, and its amber cousin from “Zhujinlin, Shifosi Zhenping, Nanyang Henan China”.

Smnall brown stone Chinese water buffalo teapot on wooden stand Three smnall stone or jade Chinese water buffalo teapots

Here are four quite similar water buffalo interpretations in jade or stone. Given the nature of the material they must have been carved as opposed to molded, but whether by hand or machine it’s impossible to say.  In the picture of three, the dark one with the pug nose and a round knob on the lid was sold as “Tibetan Jade” and came from Hong Kong. The green one with a gourd on the lid – sold as Chinese jade – came from Wuhan, Hubei, and its black companion from Zhaenghou, Henan. The orange one on the little wooden stand is quite similar to the black one with the gourd, and I found it in an antique mall in Annapolis MD.   I seriously doubt that these have any practical purpose other than decoration (and earning a bit of money for the carvers), albeit they do hold liquid and pour through the mouth.

Two Chinese stone water buffalo teapots

Two more: a heavy brown kneeling stone water buffalo with a straddle-legged bull riding its lid, and a somewhat different Asian interpretation, also stone of some sort and interestingly colored – with a disjointed front leg (shouldn’t bend that way) and a stoic red coated oriental man along for the ride.


Two Chinese clay water buffalo teapots with boys on lids Two Chinese resin water buffalo pots

Four more – the two with lazy boys, one on his back and the other kneeling, are yet more reclining water buffalo interpretations in clay.  The other two came from a gift shop at the ‘Airport Garden Hotel” where we spent our last light in Beijing before flying home  - one a water buffalo on a stand of some sort with a boy on the back, but the other – possibly a mythical beast – with a turtle on the lid and a bearded old man on the rump. Heavens only know what they’re made from – resin based something or other I’d guess. They looked better that evening, probably because we had a couple Chinese brews before we bought them.

Two Chinese flatish metal water buffalo teapots with boys playing flutes on top These two are from identical molds, but one is said to be Tibetan silver, and the other is copper.  Both bear a 4-symbol Chinese mark in a square on the bottom. They are quite nicely sculpted, with considerable detail on the tree and the boy on the lid.  The boy with the flute riding a water buffalo or bull is a traditional Zen Buddhist theme – you can read more about this on the Suiteki page. The copper teapot here was somewhat corroded so I took a bit of polish to it – it also has a considerable amount of solidified material of some sort inside, so I doubt that it was really used just for tea. Both came via eBay from Nanyang City, Henan, China; interestingly the seller had simultaneously listed the silver one for $ and the copper one for £, probably not expecting some foolish collector to search ‘worldwide’ and decide to get both.
Chinese metal mythical cow like beast pot, side Chinese metal mythical cow like beast pot, front

This one hails from Heian China, and was said to be Qing dynasty – actually a copy of one from that era I’m certain – heavily decorated, with masks and embossing on the sides. Cow? Well that was how it was sold, and from the front it does resemble one. Phantasmagorical cow that is.

Chinese ceramic cow teapot with blue trim and pink flowers Chinese thick ceramic teapot with creamer and sugar

Here are two more Chinese interpretations – this time cows for sure.  The set with the creamer and sugar is of very heavy thick ceramic, and has its “Made in China” in white on an oval red sticker.

Two small fake collector's cow teapots by Nini

To close out teapots, here are two fake collector’s versions, both by Nini, a company that makes a line of these in a variety of shapes.

Clay water buffalo tea 'pet' with sleeping boy on back

This is a rather delightful little water buffalo with the boy resting on its back, and is included to remind me to read the eBay adds more closely…once it arrived and I found it had no holes, I got ready to chew out the seller for misinformation but on closer inspection found that it was described as a “tea pet”.  I’m not sure what a tea pet is supposed to be or do, but I now have one.  At least it’s small and doesn’t take much room on my ‘whoops’ shelf.