I got several questions about the china from our Christmas dinner spread. The pattern is a discontinued style. Of course it would be discontinued since I love it so!! It's Narumi Sonata in a turquoise and green with gold gilded edge, plume pattern in the middle. While Narumi made several different patterns in the Sonata line, I still love this one the most. Many of the others that I've seen are too flowery for my taste. Some of the other patterns can be found at Replacements.com, and the line also includes patterns made by Mikasa. I'm guessing that this means the two company names are related? However, I'm not going to pretend that I understand the full history of the brand, patterns or anything else.
What I wanted to share are the three differing marks on the bottom of the china I have, as well as how some of the replacement pieces are slightly different in size/shape/style than what I had. When I originally received the set from my grandma, all of the pieces had the following mark on them: It is a very simplistic metallic/gilded gold mark.
Because Replacements.com receives china from thousands of individuals, while the pattern might be "technically" the same the marks could be different - as was my situation. All of the replacement pieces clearly say "Occupied Japan." Some of the replacement pieces have this magenta mark, which is much more frilly than what I'd had preivously:
Then, there are some which are even more detailed. They also have the name Kingsley on them. This one was VERY tough to get a good clear shot with my current lens. The lettering is REALLY small:
Aside from the differences in mark, there are some other details that I've noticed since I received the replacement pieces..
First, the plume is not as finely detailed in the replacement pieces as it was in the originals - the originals seem to have a finer brush stroke and details, as well as a thinner layer of the colored pigment. Additionally, the plumes on some of the replacement pieces seem a touch smaller than on the originals of the same piece - such as the plates.
Second, the shape of the soup bowls is different. Though, when I researched this I found that there WERE two styles of bowls made - a rimmed soup bowl (which I had originally) and a "coupe" soup bowl (the replacement pieces). The overall volume capacity of the bowls appears to be the same. I now have 6 of each.
Original, rimmed soup bowl:
Replacement, coupe soup bowl:
Bowls, side by side:
The plates differ only VERY slightly with the replacement pieces being a touch smaller in diameter than the originals - less than 1/2 an inch.
Plates side by side, original on left:
Plates stacked, replacement on top:
Close up of size difference:
The serving platters are also slightly different. While they're essentially the same dimension in width and length, the depth is greater in the replacement pieces.
Now... maybe someone out there, who's FAR more knowledgeable than I am when it comes to this sort of thing, can tell me which pieces are older based on the marks on them??? I will be forever grateful because it's really starting to become a NEED to know issue for me!