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Yes, it’s a flower.

When I first started working in archaeology as a student, my first break so to speak, was with a company that used the a variation on the makers’ marks on a ceramic pipes as their logo. It was inspired and they beat me to it by about 20 years. I had a lot of time to get over it.

After much deliberation I finally came up with this. Of course one canvasses opinions from one’s nearest and dearest. It was amazing how much resistance there was to it. It’s too botanical. It’s not archaeological enough. Well, I beg to differ. The design was copied from a small hand painted bowl excavated from a site in the Franschhoek Valley, Western Cape.

Ceramics are a good indicator of the relative date of occupation of a site. British made refined earthenwares start making their appearance in the Cape of Good Hope archaeological record at the end of the 18th century. After 1806, when the Cape is occupied by the British for the second (and final) time, most imported ceramics brought into Cape Town, and from there the rest of the Cape, came from the Staffordshire ceramic kilns. Unlike the colonists in the Americas, there was no corresponding development of refined industrial earthenwares in the Cape. Until the 20th century, all refined earthenwares found on Cape archaeological sites were imported.

All about my logo

Something about Willow Pattern ...

The “WIllow Pattern” is one of the most enduring and prolific of designs. Originating in the late 18th century (and according to Wikipedia, the work of Thomas Minton), the “blue and white” paid tribute to the asian blue and white porcelain brought into Europe by the East India trade.


The Chinese link was further reinforced through the tale of the star-crossed lovers: the daughter of a wealthy Mandarin (Chinese merchant) fell in love with her father’s clerk. Similar to all such tales, the lovers try and escape the constraints of society, unsuccessfully, and die. In later versions of the design, the lovers are reunited in death as the pair of doves. Many variations of the tale exist, and are purely a marketing device.