Melissa Haviland News


Roaming…

I was able to roam the showroom and storerooms of Replacements.

I compared shapes of gravy boats…

Comparing Gravy Boats!

Comparing Gravy Boats!

Published by melissah, on June 20th, 2010 at 12:02 pm. Filled under: Uncategorized Tags: , , , No Comments

The second visit…

During the week of May 10th, I was able to spend more time at Replacements. It was a very fruitful visit due to the generosity of Keith Winkler and his fellows within the company. I was on premises from 10am until 4pm Monday through Thursday. During this time I collected over 1,500 images of china, crystal and flatware.

I was excited to spend time walking the stacks in the warehouse and in the showroom. I came upon many of the top 25 patterns during my investigations. I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed Runnymede-Blue by Wedgewood. I was not at all interested in the pattern when experiencing the teacup on its own…but a table laid with Runnymede is lovely.
Is this the case with many of the patterns?

This is an interesting pattern for Replacements. It has always been a top seller for them. At one point Wedgewood decided to no longer make Runnymede-Blue. Replacements persuaded them to pull it out of retirement. It continues to be a top seller.

Runnymede Blue Tureen from Wedgewood

Runnymede Blue Tureen from Wedgewood


Runnymede Blue

Runnymede Blue

Published by melissah, on May 26th, 2010 at 1:32 pm. Filled under: Uncategorized Tags: , , , , , No Comments

25 Teacups

“We create, honor and preserve traditions by connecting our customers with their most cherished memories” Replacements, Ltd. motto

I was able to spend two 9-5 days at Replacements during Spring Break. Guided by my contact from the company, Keith Winkler, I was able to meet a number of the Replacements staff and begin to get a view into the workings of the business. I spent time with staff from the sales floor, research, purchasing, order processing, imaging, etc.

It is a large and successful retail business, so it is humming with life and energy. Most of the workers are long-term and very happy to be there. It is a very supportive and positive work place. And inspirational place in many ways.

During the last three hours of this first visit, I spent time with 25 teacups. These teacups represented the top 25 china patterns in LIFETIME sales at Replacements. By dollar amount. This means that the top seller, Spode’s “Christmas Tree”, which costs around $30 per teacup and saucer, had multiple tens of thousands of buyers. But Royal Copenhagen’s “Flora Danica”, which costs around $600 per teacup and saucer, would need only around a thousand buyers to come in at its 18th place.

This is the first time that I EVER held a $600 teacup.
And what an object it is. “Flora Danica” was BY FAR my favorite of the 25. Lighter and smaller then the rest. Delicately hand painted with a truly over the top amount of gold. Each piece of the china showcases a different flower, snaking around the surface…its latin name painted on the bottom of the piece with the back stamp.

Flora Danica

sketch of Flora Danica, 4/12/10


25 teacups

some of the top 25 selling china patterns at Replacements

Published by melissah, on May 19th, 2010 at 2:14 pm. Filled under: Uncategorized Tags: , , , , No Comments

Replacements, Ltd. — The Beginning

In the Fall, I approached Replacements, Ltd. about the possibility of working with them as an Artist in Residence.

Founded in 1981 by Bob Page, Replacements, Ltd. is a distributor of china, flatware, crystal, etc.
They have over 13 million items in their stocks, representing over 300,000 patterns spanning over 100 years. Replacements buys and resells these items, pairing the buyer with the missing piece of their family china…

I have been referring to their website and purchasing items of china through them for about 5 years. In the summer of 2009, I began to visit their store front in Greensboro, North Carolina. They offer a tour of the facility, which after moments of experiencing–made me realize that I needed a deeper look…

The Replacements staff responded very positively to my inquiry, meeting with me in February to begin discussions of how this relationship could develop. I was then able to spend my first full days at their store in March 2010.

Replacements, Ltd.

in the stacks at Replacements, Ltd.

Published by melissah, on May 19th, 2010 at 1:34 pm. Filled under: Uncategorized Tags: , , , , No Comments