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Ever hot The 1950s Thermal Teapot. Snippet Of The Day Number 4

Ever hot The 1950s Thermal Teapot.

Ever hot The 1950s Thermal Teapot. Snippet Of The Day Number 4

Do you know how a ‘Thermos’ flask keeps your tea warm, or any thermal mug or flask for that matter? Well, this remarkable ‘ever hot’ phenomenon is based on the principle of the vacuum flask invented by James Dewar in 1892! A very simple design, which basically comprises a sealed double walled container, made of e.g. glass or metal, with a partial vacuum between each layer. As shown in the schematic below.

Ever hot The 1950s Thermal Teapot.
Vacuum Flask. Double wall insulating container sealed at the neck, with a partial vacuum between the two layers.

The presence of the vacuum slows down the heat transfer by conduction and convection from the inner container. Rate of heat loss can be assessed thermodynamically but that is a bit more complicated and definitely outside the scope of this blog!

Dewar decided not to patent or copyright his invention, which was soon improved, superseded and copyrighted by the German company ‘Thermos’. Hence, you are more likely to hear vacuum flasks called ‘Thermos,’ in a domestic setting.  In  Science Laboratories and in industrial settings, they are often still referred to as ‘Dewar flasks.’

Ever hot The 1950s Thermal Teapot by Perry, Bevan and Co

Most tea drinkers know about the problems of lukewarm tea when making a ‘proper’ cup of tea in a teapot. You warm your pot with boiling water and then brew your tea for at least three minutes. In that three minutes your tea can lose an awful lot of heat due to heat loss from the teapot itself. If you want a second cup from the pot you had to find a way of reducing the heat loss.

Until late Victorian times, this was achieved via the tea cosy. {The designs and shapes of this very useful household item deserves a blog in its own right! I have fond memories of my Grandmother knitting or crocheting a tea cosy to fit the 2-cup, 4-cup and 8-cup Brown Betty teapots she owned.}  This was until the 1950s when Perry, Bevan & Co. patented the Ever-Hot tea service. At the time, Ever hot The 1950s Thermal Teapot was a very innovative design negating the need for the lovely knitted or crocheted tea cosy!

This is a contemporary advert for the patented Ever-Hot tea service by Perry, Bevan and Co. They were based at 133 Priory Road, Aston, Birmingham. The company was listed as Brass Founders in the 1940s, in addition to manufacturers of Chrome ware.


The earthenware teapot comprises a felt-lined chrome plated insulating casing, with a built-in lid. This doesn’t create a vacuum in the same way as a thermos/ dewar flask, but does provide some insulation with its two layers. Some teapots also had a separate tea strainer, that sat inside the pot, so that you could add the tea leaves directly to the pot. The felt could be removed and washed too! Needless to say that this design was also superseded by the arrival of more modern manufacturing methods and materials.

1950s Vintage Everhot Tall Teapot, Milk Jug, Sugar Bowl
1950s Vintage Everhot Tall Teapot, Milk Jug, Sugar Bowl














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All I Want For Christmas Is Memories!

Mullard Antiques

All I Want For Christmas Is Memories!

Hi everyone,

Today, is the first of December, and I wanted to celebrate the start of advent with you by sharing a post entitled All I Want For Christmas Is Memories. Intrigued? Then please continue reading!

What does Christmas mean to you?

I don’t think it really matters where you are in the World, or what faith, as many people now celebrate Christmas by exchanging gifts with loved ones. It is a time when families get together, put disagreements aside (hopefully!), for one day and focus on one another and spread some ‘Good Will’ to most people you come across. Even in the holiday traffic jams and travel chaos, people seems to have more patience and tolerance at this time of year!

Contrary to popular opinion amongst some children and adults, the 25th December isn’t about celebrating the birth of Father Christmas but, for Christians, the birth of Jesus of Nazareth.  Whether or not you have faith, I think it is striking that 2000 years after His birth people are still celebrating. Or is it?

All I Want For Christmas Is Memories!
‘Adoration of the Shepherds’ by Gerard van Honthorst depicting the nativity of Jesus

Most theologists agree that Christ wasn’t born on the 25th December, so why do we celebrate on this day? In fact, early Christians only celebrated Easter.

One of the theories is that the date was set to coincide with the Roman festival of Juliana around the time of the winter solstice (~ 21st December in the Northern Hemisphere). Or the birth of the Roman sun god, Mithra, on the 25th December.

Christianity only came permanently to the shores of the, then pagan, British Isles in the 4th-6th Centuries.

How Do You Celebrate Christmas?

Many parts of Europe, the Commonwealth, and USA have similar traditions during the festive season, but it is the country specific differences which I love hearing about.

Most of us have a gift giver who’s name differs from country to country including; St Nicholas (many parts of Europe), Kris Kringle, Father Christmas (UK), and Santa Claus (U.S and Canada). Many of these Christmas personifications appeared during mediaeval times in Europe. At this stage, Christmas was predominantly celebrated by adults. It wasn’t until Victorian times, at least in the UK, that Father Christmas appeared in the guise we now know him today and started giving gifts to children. He often wore a green cloak too!

All I Want For Christmas Is Memories!
Victorian Father Christmas Card with Santa in a green cloak

Christmas trees were brought to the UK in the 1830s. They were popularised by Prince Albert, husband to Queen Victoria and born in Germany. In 1848, he had one put up and decorated in Windsor Castle. The rest is history!

The tradition of Yule trees at Christmas had been around in most of Northern Europe from the 1400s but in Germany there was a special legend to celebrate. The folklore said that the Christ Child arrived on a Forester’s door step on Christmas Eve, as a poor, cold, boy. The forester, though poor himself, took the boy in and gave Him food, shelter and a bed. On Christmas morning, the boy appeared as the Christ Child with a choir of angels. He thanked the forester for looking after Him by breaking a branch off a fir tree and bringing it in to the home for the fire.

All I Want For Christmas Is Memories!
1950s Christmas Tree Brooch from ‘Saks’, 5th Avenue

One UK tradition that always intrigued me is ‘Boxing Day,’ the 26th December or St Stephen’s Day. The name is said to be derived from the custom of young boys collecting money in clay boxes after the Church service on the day after Christmas. Once full, the boxes were broken and the money distributed to the needy.

The arrival of the U.S gift giver, Santa Claus, (supposedly derived from the Dutch word for St Nicholas (Sinterklaas), dates back to the 17th Century. But the Santa Claus, whom lives in the North Pole, wears a red suit, and has a sleigh with reindeer, didn’t arrive in the U.S until 1863 following notable appearances in literature from the early 1800s. The UK’s Father Christmas and the U.S Santa Claus are now essentially the same person.

There are lots of lovely country specific traditions in mainland Europe but one I particularly like is the Santa Lucia ceremony, celebrated on the 13th December, in Sweden. St Lucia was a Christian virgin martyred for her beliefs in the 4th Century. The youngest female in the family dresses as Santa Lucia; usually with an evergreen crown with candles, a white robe and red sash. She then participates in a  candlelit procession with other girls , whom are accompanied by ‘star boys’ in white shirts and pointed hats. It is such a simple ceremony but very poignant and beautiful on a cold, snowy, day.

All I Want For Christmas Is Memories!
Santa Lucia Ceremony: Photograph by Claudia Gründer, 2006


What does Christmas Mean To Me?

All I Want For Christmas Is Memories!
Me, Age 5

To me, Christmas is about family memories. One of my earliest Christmas memories was as a 4-year old, just a few days before Christmas, when I was sat with my maternal grandmother watching Hansel and Gretel on the TV. I was worried that it wasn’t going to snow, and if it didn’t snow then how would Father Christmas use his sleigh? My Grandmother went over to her dresser and pulled out a small jewellery box and handed it to me.

‘Open it and make a wish’, she said.

I tentatively opened the box, it was quite big in my small hands, and inside was this wonderful Christmas tree brooch. With eyes sparking, I laid the brooch on the palm of my hand, closed my eyes and made a wish. I then put the brooch back in the box and returned it to the dresser drawer.

All I Want For Christmas Is Memories!
‘Make a Wish!’

Within 5 minutes it started to snow! I think you can guess what I wished for and why that memory will never fade!

My Grandmother died a couple of years later, and I pleaded to be allowed to keep the brooch after fervently promising that I would always look after it. I was given the brooch and still have it to this day. I wear it at this time of the year, every year.

To me, this is what Christmas is all about. I don’t remember what my Gran gave me as a present, possibly a doll. The gift really does’t matter. What she did create was a wonderful memory of Christmas and I hope that it creates notable moments for you all too!

The Christmas Tree Brooch

As I was thinking of writing this blog a few days ago. I went and retrieved the Christmas Tree brooch from its resting place and was intrigued to know more about it.

The costume jewellery brooch measures 7cm (2.8″) x 4cm (1.6″). It was bought in the 1950s (we think!) for my Grandmother (a housekeeper for a wealthy industrialist), as a Christmas gift from Saks, 5th Avenue (see the non-returnable sticker).  I wasn’t sure about the back mark impressed on the plant pot at the back of the brooch, so I turned to the Vintage and Antiques Community on Google+ for their help. It didn’t take long before several members of the community came back to me!

Originals by Robert which was part of The Fashioncraft Jewelry Co. NYC 1942 to 1979 founded by “Robert” Levy, David Jaffe and Irving Landsman.
The copyright mark makes it post 1955.

Thank you to Silver Standard Bullion , Nancy Brace, Pam WhimsicalVintage, Saras Corner, and Roma Arellano  of the Vintage and Antiques Google+ Community for all their help and support in tracing the origin of the brooch.

I will never part with the brooch.  It hasn’t got a massive monetary value but the sentimental value is beyond measure.

Thank you to all my readers for indulging my reminisces about Christmas. I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all-

‘A Merry Christmas and a time full of happy memories.’


Mullard Antiques & Collectibles








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Latest Royal Mail Posting Dates for Christmas 2017

Latest Royal Mail Posting Dates for Christmas 2017

Latest Royal Mail Posting Dates for Christmas 2017!

Hi everyone!

I hope you are all keeping well?

I can’t believe how this year has flown by! Halloween and Bonfire Night have been and gone so here in the UK the next big holiday is Christmas! I know this isn’t quite the case everywhere in the World but my apologies for not listing all your special celebrations and holidays here, but I hope you all enjoy them anyway!

Since some of you are usually very well (or is it ill?) prepared for the vagaries of the postal system around the festive season, I thought I would share with you the latest Royal Mail Posting Dates For Christmas.

I have only shared with you the dates for the Royal Mail (under 2Kg weight category) International Tracked/ Signed, (as here at Mullard Antiques we don’t ship Internationally via surface mail), and UK Inland Services.

Items weighing over 2Kg, or of a larger dimension, are normally shipped via a courier. It is best to contact us prior to purchase, as the delivery times vary depending on the courier used.

Having shared this with you, I would add that some items will take longer to ship than indicated, as things can get held up in customs.

I’ll be in touch again soon!


Mullard Antiques and Collectibles

For more information on Latest Posting Dates For Christmas 2017, click on the following link

International Standard (formerly Airmail) and all International Tracking and Signature Services (formerly Airsure® and International Signed For®)

Saturday 2 December: Africa, Middle East
Wednesday 6 December: Cyprus, Asia, Far East (including Japan), Eastern Europe (except Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia)
Thursday 7 December: Caribbean, Central & South America
Saturday 9 December: Greece, Australia, New Zealand
Wednesday 13 December: Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Poland
Thursday 14 December: Canada, Finland, Sweden, USA
Friday 15 December: Austria, Denmark, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland
Saturday 16 December: Belgium, France, Ireland, Luxembourg

UK Inland Services
Wednesday 20 December: 2nd Class and Royal Mail Signed For®
Thursday 21 December: 1st Class and Royal Mail Signed For®
Thursday 21 December: Royal Mail Special Delivery Guaranteed®
Friday 22 December: Special Delivery Saturday Guaranteed

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Do you believe in ghosts? An April fool or is it?

Do you believe in ghosts? An April fool or is it?

‘ Do you believe in ghosts?’ An April fool or is it?

Since it is April 1st and, therefore, April Fool’s day, I thought I would regale you with my tale which poses the question Do you believe in ghosts? An April Fool or is it?

As a scientist, I considered myself a disbeliever for many years. Evidence can be tampered with, and there is usually an explanation for sightings of apparitions. That was until I visited ‘War Wheels’ at High Ercall, Shropshire (UK), in the 1990s, with my ‘other half’.

This was at an event held by the North Staffordshire Military Vehicle Trust where I even had a ride on a Alvis Stalwart. My other half managed to get a ride in the cab, however I was riding in the back, open to the air, and hanging on for dear life to the rail just behind the cab. It was an impressive ride through rough terrain and deep water. Himself was screeching with delight, me with terror, and the addition of lots of bruises on my ribs and arms where I was shaken like a stringed puppet against the rail!


Alvis Stalwart “Stolly”


High Ercall was a RAF and USAF airfield during WW2. In 1941/2, it was used by RAF fighter command 68, 254, 255 squadrons and 1456 flight. The United States Army 8th Air Force’s 309 Fighter Squadron was also stationed here. By 1943 it was used as a training base. Many of these brave souls were killed in action or in training accidents, and buried in military graves around the area.

Anyway, I digress….

I was stood near a stall in the corner of a hangar waiting for my husband to finish inspecting a Lancaster bomber radio on sale at the stall. We already had one at home, so I was getting slightly bored and started to people watch around the hangar.

Most people were dressed in 1990s clothes and were immersed in rummaging through boxes and stall table contents. Then out of the corner of my eye I saw a pilot walking across the hangar perfectly dressed in WW2 uniform with a pair of military headphones around his neck.

WWII Military Unissued DLR style Bakelite Headphones/ Head Set/ Receiver
WWII Military Unissued DLR style Bakelite Headphones/ Head Set/ Receiver


I watched him for a few seconds stride across the hangar as if he were ready to take a flight. I noticed another lady, stood a few metres from me, looking at him too. We both smiled knowingly to one another and commented that the chap was taking it a bit far in dressing up in period costume, but perhaps he was a re-enactor.

Much later, (yawn!) I managed to drag my other half away to the NAAFI for a coffee and bacon sandwich, where I told him, bemused, about the chap the lady and I had seen. One of the event organisers overheard our conversation and told me I had seen the airfield ghost ‘Henry.’ I was flabbergasted, as the gentleman I saw, with sandy coloured hair under his cap, seemed real to me at the time!

Many years later, I found an article (02/01/2015) in the ‘Shropshire Star’ titled ‘There’s something about Henry in ghostly tale at old Telford air-base.’
 Mr Lloyd said: “Our churchyard is home to a number of military graves. At some particular time my wife, Pauline, worked at Motec restaurant and was to become manager. One day, a very scared young teenage motor apprentice went for his midday meal and revealed that he’d seen a ghost seated at the table in his room. He shouted: ‘Hey, who are you?’The apparition clad in World War Two flying garb disappeared.”

Mr Lloyd added: “Staff gave the spectre the friendly name ‘Henry’. Witnesses all said the same – that the ghostly presence had ginger hair.”

So is this an April Fool joke or do you believe I saw Henry? I think I do!



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What Is A Wall Pocket Vase?

SylvaC 320 Pottery Wall Pocket Vase With Pixies

What is a Wall Pocket Vase? An Introduction To Wall Pockets

What Is A Wall Pocket Vase?  Today, we probably think of them as a flat backed ceramic vase, which can be wall mounted and filled with flowers but they are much more versatile than this.

A wall pocket is not to be confused with a:

  • Wall sconce, which is effectively a wall light or a receptacle for holding a light e.g. candles or, these days, electrical wires.
Meissen Porcelain Wall Sconce
  • Wall plaque a thin, flat plate or tablet of metal or porcelain intended for use as ornament.
Art Deco Cope & Co Lady wall mask
Art Deco Cope & Co Lady wall mask/ plaque

Wall pockets date back many centuries to when they were made out of cloth or wood. In fact, they are an early form of storage for those things you wouldn’t want to lose if you hadn’t the luxury of a chest of drawers or cupboards!

Cloth pockets stored things like scissors, needles and thread. Prior to the 17th Century, wooden wall pockets became popular for holding pipes, spills, candles, matches and eating utensils. Even today, you will often see a mounted wooden candle box holder in a church or stately home. Some of these may be modern reproductions but there are many antiques out there too!

Wooden wall pocket for storing candles

It wasn’t until the 18th century that we first saw stylish porcelain wall pocket vases with the arrival of the potteries in UK and abroad.

Most of these early pottery wall pockets were just too expensive for many people but, during the industrial revolution, cheaper methods of making ceramics were introduced, and the popularity of these wonderful objects just exploded.

Most potteries and manufacturers produced a version of a wall pocket including:

  • UK potteries: too numerous to mention e.g. Bretby, Royal Worcester, Wedgwood, Royal Doulton, Grays, Crown Devon, SylvaC, Arthur Wood.


  • U.S.A e.g. Roseville, whom produced wall pockets in the form of art vases which are now highly prized.
Roseville ‘Foxglove’ Wall Pocket
  • Japan e.g Noritake.
  • Germany e.g. Meissen, Dresden

This lasted until about the 1960s when their popularity started to decline as fashions in homes changed. I blame the arrival of stores like Habitat with their range of more affordable, must have, home designs: only joking!

Wall pockets can be found in all sorts of shapes and sizes from people, characters from books, musical instruments, hats, clothing, shoes, household objects, animals, birds, houses, seashells, fantasy/ mythical/ biblical  creatures, flora and fauna. In fact, just about anything you can think of! Sizes can vary from small, 5-10cm (2-4 inches), to over 30cm (approx. 1 foot).


Manufacturers didn’t just stop at using ceramics either. Wall pockets were also made out of glass, wood, metal, cloth and plastic.

Vintage Pink Glass Wall Pocket

There are not many survivors from this era as they had a habit of falling off walls… Just look what was used to hang this Aldridge Easter Bonnet shaped Wall pocket!

Aldridge Pottery Wall Pocket Vase: hung up with electrical flex!

Prices for antique and vintage wall pockets vary from just a few pounds to 1000s of pounds for some of the rarest designs.

They had, and still have, a multitude of uses including displaying fresh and dried flowers, living plants, herbs, storing soap bars, pan scrubs, hair and tooth brushes, filing papers, and house keys. I even heard of one lady who bought a vintage mouse shaped pocket vase and kept her pet mouse in it. The mouse was able to run up and down the flocked wall paper to its house whenever he pleased…. Ugh!

Wall pockets are still made today and from all sorts of materials and called by a range of names e.g. wall planters, holders, racks but rarely pockets or even just vases. They include reproductions of vintage and antique wall pockets, sometimes using the original moulds, to glass test tubes, holding a single flower stem or herbs, with a suction cup to enable you to stick it on to a window.

In fact upcycling of old light bulbs and chemical glassware has led to a whole range of wonderful wall mounted vases and holders. Have a look on Etsy and Amazon if you need some ideas!

Love them or hate them, these versatile household items have been with us for centuries and are here to stay!

Please click on the following link for Wall pocket vases for sale on our website.