I bought two bowls from Laurel House Antiques. The way they nest I think it was a set of three originally. Does this lessen the value?
You have two classic Cane patterned mixing bowls by the English pottery company Mason Cash of Church Gresley, Derbyshire. They made these bowls in a variety of sizes so they are not found in conventional “sets”. I would estimate the values on these bowls individually.
Like its neighbor, the better-known Staffordshire, Derbyshire was home to a number of potteries dating to the 18th century. In his 1878 book The Ceramic Art of Great Britain from Prehistoric Times Down to the Present Day, author Llewllynn Frederick William Jewitt describes Derbyshire pottery as “buff or yellow” and declares, “The local clay from which these goods are produced is peculiar to this district, and is not found precisely the same anywhere else.”
Beginning about 1813, Mason pottery made household goods, as did fellow Derbyshire Watt and Cash. In 1901, Thomas Cash, son of Watt and Cash founder William, purchased Mason and combined the two names.
Mason and Cash have produced their “cane” patterned bowls almost without change since 1901. The zig-zagged rim and the textured exterior of the bowl provide solid one-handed grip and the narrow foot provides stability. If you look at kitchen scenes from any British drama you’ll see cooks – including Downton Abbey’s Mrs. Patmore – using these bowls. As far as I can tell, they’ve never been out of production.
Mason and Cash currently make these bowls in 10 sizes ranging in diameter from 12 to 35 centimeters so I suppose having two rather than three nesting bowls does not lessen the value. In good condition, these vintage bowls sell in the $25 to $70 range. You can buy these bowls new for about the same price.
(Mason and Cash have expanded their line of wares. They have a line specifically for pets!)