One of the most successful chintz producing potteries, Grimwade Brothers, began in 1885 at the Winton Pottery, Stock-on-Trent when Leonard Grimwade invited his older brother Sidney to join his manufacture business. Sidney was a potter, however, it appears that Leonard was the enterprising force behind the prosperity of Grimwade Brothers. He was described by business associates and employees alike as a man of vision, energy and generosity.
His company grew quickly receiving patents for a number of innovative products including the Paragon coffee pot with a removable strainer, a Safety Milk Bowl and a Quick-Cooker Bowl. Earthenware for the kitchen, toiletry, hospital, nursery and table was produced by the company. The chintz ware for which the company is well know may have been produced as early as 1913 in more traditional patterns such as Jacobean ware, Hampton chintz and Spode Chintz. These patterns were large and widely spaced.
Today, we generally associate chintz with smaller closely packed patterns. The first chintz of this nature produced by Grimwades was Paisley in 1923. However, the pottery’s first major success with a “modern” chintz pattern was the design Marguerite in 1928. This pattern is said to have been inspired by a design Mrs. Minnie Grimwade was working on a cushion at the time. The success of Marguerite was followed by numerous new chintz patterns during the next 20+ years. Some patterns remained proprietary to Grimwade such as Julia and Welbeck, while others were sold for use by other potteries such as Rose Du Barry.
Although Leonard Grimwade died unexpectedly in 1931, his company florished for many years. By the 1960s, due to a number of factors, the market for chintz had dropped off. The Grimwade company was sold to Howard Potteries in 1964 with the Royal Winton trade name kept intact. Various company buyouts proceeded over the years with the Royal Winton name still remaining. As far as we know, the latest company to trade as Royal Winton is still producing chintz ware. There are 12 patterns available with some of the most popular original chintz designs reintroduced in the 1990s.
Royal Winton chintz continues to be a favorite with collectors. Listed below are some excellent resources available for those who wish to explore the rich history of Royal Winton and English chintz ware.
This brief summary was gleaned from Collecting Royal Winton Chintz by Muriel M. Miller, Francis Joseph Publications 1996 available on Amazon.
Collecting Royal Winton Chintz by Muriel M. Miller
Royal Winton Porcelain: Ceramics Fit for a King by Eileen Rose Busby
The Charlton Standard Catalogue of Chintz, 3rd Edition by Susan Scott
Chintz Ceramics by Jo Anne Welsh