A to Z Anthology

As the Society no longer produces newsletters, we will post occasional items of interest here.
Topics will be chosen at random.
Your contributions are welcome.

L is for Lay Lady Lay

Beneath our dubious humour and cryptic comments there is always a nugget of knowledge. Thus:

LAY - This is a "lay" or "service" plate - a sort of fancy table mat. You weren't supposed to eat off it, but put an ordinary plate of food on top of it. These were introduced in the mid-1930s, but suffered when the outbreak of WW2 brought a ban on selling decorated wares to the UK market. Post-war Britain was still in the grip of austerity, so the late 40s advertisement (right) is aimed at the US & Canadian markets. (More in newsletter 12.)

LADY - She bears an impressed date of 1946, but doesn't appear in the advertisement. Nor can we find an example from the 30s. Maybe she was designed at a time when tastes had moved on and this style wasn't in vogue any more. The other lay plates are common, but the lady isn't. For once we have to use the word "rare".

Apologies to Mr Zimmerman. Please don't sue us Bob.

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