Wedding season is quickly approaching, and whether you’re in the middle of putting together your dream registry or want to buy a fab piece of kitchenware for the soon-to-be bride, Oscar de la Renta’s brushstroke dinner plate ($34, Saks Fifth Avenue) is a fantastic gift to give and get. The blue and white hand-painted stoneware dish was inspired by an art class the designer took in Japan. Its striped watercolor image is finished with crackle glaze to keep the color strong and free from chips, and since each piece is done by hand, all will be unique.
Speaking of which, I’m looking forward to seeing the “New Blue and White” exhibition soon, now in the middle of its run at the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston). Until July 14, the MFA is exploring contemporary interpretations of historically ubiquitous porcelain designs bearing this cobalt pigment on white clay, focusing on the ceramics world as well as fashion (Rodarte and Nicholas Kirkwood included). Below, a few items included in the exhibition:
Harumi Nakashima, Work 0808, 2008. Glazed stoneware.
Designed by Rodarte, Dress, 2011. Silk with ribbon embroidery and printed hammered chiffon.
“Kate and Laura Mulleavy, the sisters behind the label Rodarte, translated classic blue-and-white porcelain designs into this dress, recreating the millennium old pattern with ribbon embroidery and printed chiffon.” – MFA Facebook page
Designed by Rodarte, produced by Nicholas Kirkwood, Pair of woman’s shoes, 2011.
“’Blow Away’ Vase,” 2009. Hand-painted porcelain with in-glaze blue.
“A classic vessel manufactured by Royal Delft, a Dutch ceramics factory established in the 17th century, goes through a computer simulation where it meets a strong wind, and reacts in a manner dissonant from the laws of physics. Captured mid-gust, this impossible act was created in clay by the same factory that produced the original work centuries ago. The ‘Blow Away Vase’ speaks to the way historical practice and new technology can come together to inform contemporary design.”