A Guide to Clarice Cliff Pottery Markings

Clarice Cliff’s pottery is renowned for its spectacular colour and abstract style, it is now sought after worldwide!

Clarice Cliff is one of the most significant and noteworthy ceramic artists of the 20th century. Her work has helped to shape Art Deco ceramic design and influenced style and design around the world. In recent years Clarice Cliff pottery and ceramics has become even more popular and is coveted by collectors.

Our Clarice Cliff markings guide will help you identify valuable and collectable Clarice Cliff pieces. Keep reading to discover more.  

The History of Clarice Cliff Pottery

Clarice Cliff started making pottery at just age 13, which is perhaps one of the reasons for her success. Starting her craft at an early age meant Cliff was given her own studio in the heart of The Potteries, aged just 28, after a decade of experience.

Cliff studied at the Burslem School of Art and the Royal College of Art, as well as spending time studying design in Paris, with all of these experiences adding to her design inspirations.  “Having a little fun at my work does not make me any less of an artist, and people who appreciate truly beautiful and original creations in pottery are not frightened by innocent tomfoolery.” – Clarice Cliff.

The most famous Cliff ranges include, ‘Bizarre’, ‘Crocus’ and ‘Fantasque’.

This document is one of the few remaining documents from the factory archive. It is a copy of the factory shape sheet that would have been used in the 1930s when Clarice Cliff pottery was being manufactured in hundreds of different shapes.

This document is one of the few remaining documents from the factory archive. It is a copy of the factory shape sheet that would have been used in the 1930s when Clarice Cliff pottery was being manufactured in hundreds of different shapes. 

Photo Credit: ClariceCliff.com

Why is Clarice Cliff Ceramics Famous?

The stunning colour and abstract design of Cliff’s ceramics often speaks for itself, and the geometric patterns can stir up a mixture of responses. Love it or hate it, you’ll always recognise a Cliff piece. 

It’s often suggested that Cliff ignited the Art Deco movement with her ‘Bizarre-ware’ range, and this popular collection has been instrumental in the popularity of Cliff’s ceramics. 

Clarice Cliff ceramics are often the easiest to identify because of the distinct shapes and design. It’s also important to explore the markings on the pieces to check for authenticity.

If you are looking to expand your Clarice Cliff collection, our experts can help you curate the perfect collection of valuable Clarice Cliff for your enjoyment. Or if you want to sell your collectable Clarice Cliff pieces, then we can help. There are buyers worldwide that are looking to complete their collections of rare and patterned pieces.

A Clarice Cliff three-piece tea set decorated in the Solomons Seal design, sold for an amazing £500 at one of our Antique, Rare Pottery and Fine Art SalesA Clarice Cliff three-piece tea set decorated in the Solomons Seal design, sold for an amazing £500 at one of our Antique, Rare Pottery and Fine Art Sales.

What Clarice Cliff Markings Should I Look Out For?

Looking for markings can be tricky. If they are hand painted there can be inconsistencies, and if the markings have been added with a rubber stamp then letters can be missing or irregular. 

The famous Bizarre range will often have ‘Bizarre’ hand painted in black ink alongside ‘Newport Pottery England’ or ‘Royal Staffordshire Pottery’ markings. There are common versions of these markings that you can look out for on the back of your pottery. 

Clarice Cliff Trademark Backstamps

Due to the long and successful career Clarice Cliff had, there have been various backstamps spanning the years of production. Look out for the following back stamps on your pieces. 

This first selection of stamps are often found on pieces from the late 1920s to the early 1930s. You might find these stamps to be handwritten.

Handwritten stamps from the late 1920s to the early 1930sHandwritten stamps from the late 1920s to the early 1930sHandwritten stamps from the late 1920s to the early 1930sHandwritten stamps from the late 1920s to the early 1930s

This next selection of stamps are often found on pieces from the early 1930s. These stamps may also be handwritten.

Handwritten stamps on pieces from the early 1930sHandwritten stamps on pieces from the early 1930sHandwritten stamps on pieces from the early 1930sHandwritten stamps on pieces from the early 1930s

The following stamps are the most common stamps, found on pieces from the early 1930s to the mid-1930s.

Common stamps, found on pieces from the early 1930s to the mid-1930sCommon stamps, found on pieces from the early 1930s to the mid-1930sCommon stamps, found on pieces from the early 1930s to the mid-1930sCommon stamps, found on pieces from the early 1930s to the mid-1930s

The final stamps were used from the mid-1930s and used in the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s.

The final stamps were used from the mid-1930s and used in the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s.The final stamps were used from the mid-1930s and used in the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s.The final stamps were used from the mid-1930s and used in the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s.The final stamps were used from the mid-1930s and used in the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s.

Photo Credit: Clarice Cliff Back Stamps

Do you recognise any of these markings on your pieces? If you need further support, Potteries Auctions can step in.

This beautifully distinctive Clarice Cliff Newport Pottery inkwell and cover, in the Orange Erin design, sold for a wonderful £280 in our 2019 rare pottery auction.This beautifully distinctive Clarice Cliff Newport Pottery inkwell and cover, in the Orange Erin design, sold for a wonderful £280 in our 2019 rare pottery auction.

How Much is My Clarice Cliff Worth?

Potteries Auctions can identify and provide valuations on a wide range of Clarice Cliff pieces. The value of your Clarice Cliff piece will depend on the style and age. Please get in touch with us to discuss how we can help you or request a call back if you are looking for an expert evaluation and are seeking to sell your Clarice Cliff pottery. 

At Potteries Auctions, we can value pieces worldwide with Zoom appointments and email valuations. We have a large client based who are interested in buying Clarice Cliff pieces, as it forms an integral part of our auction listings. Our team can help value your collection or turn you into a collector!

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