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In 1951, an American company specialised in the import of European glass and kitchenware called Lipper International starts producing Onion Pattern porcelain in Japan by the name of Blue Danube.
Blue Danube is made of white porcelain decorated with a printed Onion Pattern decor in underglaze cobalt blue.
The Onion Pattern, or Zwiebelmuster was first produced in Germany by Meissen in the first half of the 18th century. It was based on Chinese porcelain. I wrote the following blogpost about that relation: link.
Blue Danube was a huge success. It was thicker and better suited for every day use than most German manufactured Onion Pattern porcelain. It was also more affordable because the wares were printed instead of hand painted.
Blue Danube has issued an enormous range of items. Over 100 different sorts of items were available. Produced items range from everyday plates and cups to bakeware, soap dishes, large jugs and jars.
The faith of Blue Danube is unclear. In 2004 Portmeirion USA announced it took over the brand, however, it is not currently in production.
Blue Danube has two distinctive marks. The pre 1976 mark has the text ‘Blue Danube’ on a ribbon and mentions a US patent registration. The Post 1976 mark is rectangular and just mentions ‘Blue Danube’ and ‘Japan’.