The Chinese were the first to make a form of porcelain teapot that was hard and durable. Their native clay made a pot that polished to a bright and smooth finish. Because this clay only came from China, other countries desired to find a way lazy kung fu tea set they could make competitive teapots. The English in particular took interest in teapot making. If they could make create this devise locally, it would become more affordable to those in England, who loved their tea.
English teapots also started with clay. Unfortunately the process turned out to be very expensive. They weren't very well made at first and resembled stoneware more than china because of the lack of the correct clay and production methods. Teapots came with replaceable spouts because this part broke so often. There were several types of teapot design. One popular motif was the oriental blue willow or tree of life. Other designs portrayed famous European prints and armorial or pots with wealthy or royal coats of arms emblazoned on the sides.
In 1710, Clay was found near Meissen Germany that enabled Johann Bottger to make what was called hard-paste clay from which white porcelain pots equal to that of the Chinese were born. Dresden, Germany became the center for making China in Europe and by the mid 1700's both England and France joined in. These European porcelain teapots were globular or pear shaped. Some had interesting spouts shaped by animals or dragons and the handles with rich scroll work. In the 1800's the more scrolling and gold gilt the better. Often times a teapot was very unsuitable for making a pot of tea but looked wonderful sitting up on a shelf.
During the twentieth century the design of teapots were more utilitarian and functional. However, teapots took other shapes like squares or cube shape. The Art Deco Movement influenced teapot makers to make pots that looked like airplanes, trains and racecars. Teapot production all but stopped during World War II because they were not necessary to the war effort, contrary to English belief. Production started right back up afterward and teapots are still being produced today in just about any style. The recent resurgence of old elegant and ornamented porcelain teapots bears witness to the renewed love of traditional style, as well as a good cup of tea.
Many different countries made and sold teapots. Kensington, Roy Kirkland, Spode, Royal Daulton and the Wedgwood brand are all English Companies most of which still make china products including teapots. Lomonosov China is made in Russia and they also still make lovely porcelain teapots. In America the Lenox Company makes fine teapots. All of these can be found in most fine department stores and they all bring a big price. Today department stores also offer inexpensive pots in all kinds of sizes and shapes. Antique teapots are sought after and the ones that are not chipped or cracked can cost a bit of money, but the rich history in that little item is worth it to collectors.
Old porcelain, or new can be cleaned and made to look good as new. Porcelain teapots often have white insides and tend to get stained over lazy kung fu tea set the years. It is very easy to clean them by placing 4 tablespoons baking soda in the bottom of the pot. Add enough water to make a sludge-like consistency. Take an old toothbrush and start to scrub.