Shapes and colour
An indicator of when a piece dates from is the shape. Many shapes were discontinued, or changed over time. The different cup shapes include the casino teacup, don one handled mug and two handled mug (don mugs ceased in 1983), and the handled don beaker. From 1979 the more squat shape of the hug a mug with turned out top rim was introduced.
Pattern numbers are preceeded by a code depicting the shapes, known as LF (large flatware, large bowls and plates etc) SF small flatware (small flatware such as small bowls and plates), and HW (hollow ware such as cups, jugs etc) and EC (eggcups). There are exceptions to the rule, with flatware patterns sometimes appearing on hollow ware pieces and vice versa.
here are the examples of cup shapes, from left to right casino teacup, don one handled mug, two handled don mug, and don beaker
Don beakers date from 1937-89. early examples have the border of bunnies running around the inside of the top rim, then they changed to the outer rim.
the pattern on the left is quite hard to find, HW3R fishing in the goldfish bowl issued 1937-52, the one on the right is a later example of the don beaker with the bunnies on the outside, HW22 wheelbarrow race style one pattern issued 1952-1998. The colour difference between the older piece and newer piece is quite obvious to see in this picture as well.
The casino shaped teapots, jugs and sugar bowl were withdrawn by 1968, with the exception of the teacups and saucer which continued production.
The jugs and teapots came in 3 sizes, small medium and large.
here are the 3 sizes on display together
casino shaped teapots shown from left to right patterns SF 13 letterbox 1952-1968, LFc carving the chicken 1937-52 (rare pattern) and HW16 lambeth walk 1937-67
casino jugs from left to right SF4 frightening spider 1937-52, HW11 Proposal 1937-67, and HW12 family at breakfast 1937-52.
There are the 3 examples of eggcup shapes, footed (1940-68), footless (1937-68) and semi-footed (1968-present).
examples of the 3 shapes are shown here, patterns EC126 drummer and bugler, EC3 sheltering under an umbrella EC2 drummer
The large heavy bowls and oval bowls, bread and butter plate with tab handles, porridge plate (which is like a large shallow bowl), beaker covers, jam pot had all been withdrawn by 1968 or before, so can be more difficult to find. The rimmed fruit saucer or jaffa bowl as it is sometimes called, changed from a wavy rim to a plain rim in 1950.
The small round baby bowls, changed shape in 1978 from having straighter sides to one with an outer top lip which protrudes further than the base, as shown here. Note also the colour change from the earlier cream coloured earthenware dish on the left, to the later white bone china piece on the right.
The lidded hot water plate dates from 1940-69, with the 2 stopper version introduced in 1952.
here is an example of a one stopper hot water dish along with a lidded jam pot featuring the pattern HW13 Feeding the baby
The beaker pad or cover, looks like a small pin dish and is 9 cm diameter, as a rule eggcups and beaker pads do not have the barbara vernon signature, but there are rare examples of signed pieces around.
Some of the most difficult shapes to find are the candle holder (1940-52) and night light (1937-45)
Here is an example of the candle holder featuring the pattern SF9 santa clause.
for more information about dating bunnykins including backstamps and more examples of bunnykins patterns, please see my other guide on ebay Dating Royal Doulton Bunnykins Tableware
I hope this guide has been helpful. I often get people emailing me asking for help with their bunnykins pieces. I am always happy to help out where I can, just message my id through the ebay system with any questions.
thankyou for taking the time to read my guide and happy collecting!