Crockery designs are created, transferred and painted onto plates at the Wedgwood factory.
M/S of four men sitting at a workbench before a window in a factory in Barlaston, Staffordshire; all are engraving and have pieces of crockery before them. C/U of a design that a man is working from; it is an intricate drawing or print of a church pulpit and organ; tilt down to show the man engraving the design on a copper plate. Extreme C/U of a sliver of cooper being carved away.
M/S and C/U of another man hammering a design onto a copper cylinder; very painstaking work. M/S of a different man wearing an apron and pulling a long sheet of a printed plate design from a roller printing press; C/U of the printed sheet coming off the roller; it's a circular ivy design. The man tears the sheet and hangs it on a line with some others to dry. A woman takes one of the sheets off the line and cuts out the design; we are told it is 'Napoleon Ivy'. The doughnut-shaped design is placed on a plate and wiped with a damp cloth to transfer it.
Another girl is seen sitting among shelves of crockery and painting the ivy design in green, after the plate has been glazed and fired. She puts the finished plated on a pile; finished cups and jugs in the same design are also on the table. A middle-aged lady, Head of the Wedgwood School of Freehand Paintresses, is seen painting a grapevine design freehand on a white plate; commentator informs us she has thirty years experience of this decorative process. M/S of her painting; pan right to show a table beside her with a full dinner service in the same design.
Commentator says although freehand decoration is dying, this highly skilled brushwork is seen on practically everything that is made here, and we see M/S of another woman 'lining' a plate - painting lines around the edge of a plate design while it spins round on a hand-operated turntable. M/S of a finished dinner service set in the Napoleon Ivy design; a gravy boat, fruit bowl, cups and saucers and plates are seen: C/U of a dinner plate.
Note: Although the factory is not named, notes on file say it is Wedgwood. See out takes on *PM0129* CP 319 OUT TAKES .