The patterns of Royal Copenhagen
Like words on paper, the hand-painted blue lines of Royal Copenhagen porcelain have told stories since they first came to life with Royal Copenhagen’s signature pattern no.1, Blue Fluted Plain. As history evolved, pattern no.2, Blue Flower, continued the floral tale. To this day, the two original patterns are the foundation of all new patterns of Royal Copenhagen.
Pattern no.1 Blue Fluted Plain
For more than 240 years, the beautiful brushstrokes of Blue Fluted Plain have painted a picture of passion, history and quality in royal blue paint on the dinner tables of many homes around the world.
A Chinese influence
Pattern no. 1, Blue Fluted Plain, was the first pattern to adorn the porcelain of Royal Copenhagen, then named The Royal Porcelain Factory, in 1775. At that time, porcelain production across Europe found inspiration from China, the birthplace of porcelain; its exports represented wealth and refined taste, and porcelain had become a valuable commodity. And so, with inspiration from Chinese patterns, the Blue Fluted Plain design came to life and was to be labeled as Pattern no. 1. To this day, every piece of Blue Fluted Plain is marked with a ‘1’.
Origin of the name
The original Danish name for Blue Fluted Plain is ‘Musselmalet’, ‘clam-painted’. While many believe the name refers to the fluted shape of the porcelain being reminiscent of a clam or seashell, the shape is in fact inspired by a stylized Crysanthemum and cinquefoil motif. Chrysanthemum flowers were a popular motif in China when Blue Fluted Plain came to life, and as the pattern developed, it kept its stylised chrysanthemum in a simple form, while a plant native to the Nordic region, the cinquefoil, grew next to it.
Building on a legacy
Blue Fluted Plain has evolved since its inception in 1775, but the fundamental characteristics of the pattern have remained. As time has gone by, pattern has been reconsidered and appropriated, painted in new shapes and in new colours. The stylized flowers have been uprooted and replanted in new colours and contexts, and the palmette-ornamented arches have begun to tell new stories. Elegant disruptions that bring new life while respecting the legacy of the historical pattern.
Pattern no.2 Blue Flower
In 1779, Blue Flower came to life as Royal Copenhagen’s second pattern. The pattern, which is no longer in production, featured a spray of flowers, seemingly freshly picked from the gardens of Denmark and hand-painted in Royal Copenhagen’s signature royal blue on fine, white porcelain.
The Blue Flower decoration
Originally, in the 17th century, the Blue Flower decoration was painted on two different shapes, braided and fluted, typical for the late Rococco period’s asymmetrical, organic shapes. In 1885, G.F Hetsch designed a coffee set with an angular shape, which was adorned with the Blue Flower decoration among other patterns. The result was an expression with angular bodies met by soft decorations of acanthus on some handles and spouts.
In 1913, Arnold Krogh redesigned the angular shape and expanded it into a full dinner set, decorated with extra compact, heavy decorations.