History

The Delft Story

The Delft style ceramic piece represents the oldest and one of the best known existing ceramics in the world.

In 1626 when Peter Minuit was making the best buy in history - Manhattan Island for $24 - another ingenious Dutchman by the name of Claes Wijtman was creating the first Delft. Both enterprises turned out very well. Mr. Minuit's investment appreciated about a billion times and Delft proved so popular it is still being produced three hundred and seventy years later.

The first Delft was inspired by Chinese blue and white stoneware which had become very popular on the European continent. Mr. Wijtman's imitation was well received and a prosperous industry was created in defunct breweries in the town of Delft, from which the ceramic derives its name.

Delft reached in popularity peak in the period between the 17th and 18th Centuries. It became a favorite of European nobility and art collectors. In fact, the best known art dealers today - The House of Duveen - got its start in Delft. It was also responsible for the creation of Dresden and Meisenware by virtue of Dutch potters who had emigrated to Germany with the idea of imitating Delft.

Like all art forms, the Delft style changed with the times and gradually acquired characteristics of its native Holland. The original oriental scenes were replaced by florals inspired by the beauty of Dutch flower fields and the familiar windmill scenes were frequently used. Dutch designers created many new pieces in the unique Dutch style.

Starting in the summer of 2014, the classic delft blue style design that John Braat and Company, LLC has imported for over 40 years is now available from the Dutch artisan Sylvia Brands along with a new color plate of her own design. We are thrilled to continue the tradition of birth, wedding and anniversary plates to mark every family's most important milestones.