Word of the Week: Bisque

Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately?), I’m not blogging about soup today.

No, the bisque we’re talking about is a type of porcelain that is, simply enough, unglazed. It’s fired in a kiln at a certain temperature and is typically quite porous.

Bisque is easy to spot because it’s often white and scratchy (not smooth), which are both the result of not being glazed.

Here’s a picture of a bisque figurine:

Do you prefer the soup or the figurine?? 😉


Word of the Week: Ball and Claw

“Ball and claw” refers to the shape of the footed legs of an item – whether it be as small as a sugar bowl or as big as a tub. In particular, this gives us a claw that is gripping a round ball (usually glass). It’s a pretty classic design and kind of Medieval-chic, if such a thing exists.

It’s as simple as that! This particular ball and slaw foot belongs to one leg of a piano stool we recently sold. Check out the wide shot:

Have you come across this before? What item was it?

Word of the Week: Andirons

An andiron is an L-shaped iron bar used in the fireplace to hold wood. They come in pairs and logs are laid across the horizontal portion, in order to build up a fire. Getting the wood up off the ground allows more air to pass under the logs, reducing the amount of smoke. The vertical portion is there to catch the logs in case they settle and decide to roll.

These are usually made of cast or wrought iron (though the ones below are mostly brass). They’re footed, and some of the better (and older ones) have legs that are actually in the shape of legs! They may have clawed feet on the end, too. Some of these can be extremely ornate.

P.S. Happy Halloween to everyone out there planning some spooky or silly fun tonight! Eat lots of candy!!

Word of the Week: Shaving Mug

About a month ago I told you what a mustache mug was. This week I’m here to tell you what a shaving mug is, and the difference between the two.

A shaving mug is simply a mug you fill with water in order to clean the soap from your brush.

It may sound like these two types of mugs are worlds apart, but they look very similar and are often confused for the other.

Side view of a shaving mug.

The difference is that mustache mugs will ALWAYS have the “shelf” with the hole that protects the mustache when drinking hot liquids. A shaving mug will NEVER have this.

This is a mustache mug, with the distinctive hole that you would drink from.

Sometimes a shaving mug looks like a regular mug that you could drink from. The more you deal in these items, the easier it will be to distinguish if one is a shaving mug or not.

This is a shaving mug, with the three holes that would allow your brush to drain water into the cup below.

However, some of them will have a dead giveaway: a “shelf” of their own. Now, before you get up in arms and storm out of here, just listen. The shelf on this one looks vastly different from the shelf on the mustache mug. Shaving mugs will have three small holes on their shelf so that when you lay your brush on it, it will drain into the body of the cup below.

Easy, right!?