Use these alphabet illustrations to create your own Victorian children's drinking
china was an easy and fashionable craft during the Victorian
era. A popular project was decorating children’s dishes and
drinking mugs with nursery rhyme characters or the alphabet.
A nineteenth century magazine, The Art Amateur, A
Monthly Journal Devoted to Art in the Household, once
provided delightful alphabet illustrations for decorating
children’s drinking mugs. The publication also suggested
drawing these whimsical patterns on tiles as a charming
mantel decoration for the nursery fireplace.
The figures and letters were outlined in black so they would
stand out in relief – dark against a pale ground. The
following color schemes were also suggested for those who
wished to add some color to the original design:
Letter “A” - Make this a study of blue
with a very dark blue and black dress, pale blue
headdress, and a white neck handkerchief.
Accent the bowl with pale sepia on a pale
yellow brown ground.
Letter “B” - Paint the baby’s gown white
and the woman dress a yellow brown. Cover the
chair with brown and outline the window with
blood red while showing a light blue sky.
Suggest panes of glass by adding thin black
Letter “C” - Color the baby's gown pale
green and the nurse’s dress light violet with a
deep purple and apple green yoke.
Whether recreating your own nineteenth
century children’s dishes or designing a truly Victorian
nursery and bathroom, these illustrations will offer an
opportunity to create a fun-filled craft. You can hand-draw
the alphabet motifs on mugs or tiles at a pottery or ceramic
studio – they provide everything including supplies, a
little coaching, and a lot of encouragement. Another option
is to create your own decals with the images, using your
inkjet printer with inkjet water-slide decal paper. These
decals may be applied onto almost any smooth, non-porous
surface. These decorative non-fire inkjet decals make arts
and crafts projects fun and easy – your imagination is your
only limit! An online source is located here.