riviera ware

16 Jan

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We’re all familiar with the classic, brightly colored Fiesta ware, but I was happily surprised when I came across a feature on the lesser-known Riviera ware in the February issue of Martha Stewart Living.

Martha’s collecting expert, Fritz Karch, says, “The dishes are Riviera ware, the scarcest of three everyday dishware lines introduced by Homer Laughlin China in the 1930s. Fiesta and Harlequin were the other two. Riviera was made for only a decade or so, but Harlequin was produced until 1964. Fiesta is still manufactured today.

“You can identify Riviera dishware by its light weight (it was the least expensive of the three lines) and the scalloped corners of the plates and bowls. These characteristics also made Riviera more prone to breakage and chips, so it’s hard to find pieces in mint condition. Your best bet for adding to your collection is to find specialty dealers (Mood Indigo in New York City is one) and scour online auction sites.

“Expect to pay $20 to $50 for a dinner plate or bowl and upward of $150 for larger, even less common pieces, such as juice pitchers and covered casseroles.”

 

I, for one, love the charm of the scalloped edges. And, of course, the rarity — isn’t the fun all in the pursuit anyways? What do you think? Will you be keeping your eyes peeled for Riviera ware at your next flea market?

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