Northwood Leaf & Beads Clambroth or Pastel Marigold Tri-Corner Candy Dish

Northwood Leaf & Beads Clambroth or Pastel Marigold Tri-Corner Candy Dish


I bought this Northwood Leaf and Beads tri-corner candy dish from an eBay listing which described it only as a "White Carnival Glass Dish" and featured grainy photos showing hardly any colour taken against a light background. I recognised the pattern, liked the shape and thought it was worth a taking a chance on.

When it arrived I immediately saw it wasn't white and I was amazed by how colourful it actually is. This is the version of the Leaf and Beads with a plain interior.

Viewed against a darker background or with reflected light, the interior iridescence presents a symphony of delicate shades of  pink, lilac, yellow, peach and blue, radiating out symmetrically from the centre. The finish has a soft matt pearl effect, slightly stretchy towards the edges, and, being light and translucent, it lets the Leaf and Beads pattern on the reverse surface show through very effectively. The colours constantly change as the light intensity falling on it changes.

The underside shows similar colour effects, but with a shiny finish. The tiny rayed flower cartouche within the marie, which is often overlooked on this pattern, displays a particularly attractive iridescent effect; a hidden secret which I'd never spotted before I took these photographs. The rustic feet are a more even colour being a light yellow brown shade. Viewed from below against a light background the overall appearance is of a pale yellow brown pearlised glass. Only the edges of the central marie appear as clear glass.

This leaves me with a burning question: "How do I categorise the colour of this particular piece?" Is it Pastel Marigold or Clambroth? The definition of each seems to be a source of continuing debate amongst collectors. Some assert that Clambroth is a base glass colour, while others say it's a coating over clear glass. Some say that only Imperial made true Clambroth, and any similar effects by Northwood are simply accidental variants of Pastel Marigold. There is no orange tint in the coating of this piece but there is clear glass underlying it.

Perhaps I'll never know which to call it, but at the end of the day, it doesn't really matter; it's beauty speaks for itself regardless.

The David Richards Collection, Cumbria, UK