Friday, April 2, 2010

Vintage Royal Doulton "Bunnykins" signed by Barbara Vernon

This adorable vintage Royal Doulton "Bunnykins" baby bowl and cup, both signed by Barbara Vernon, is perfect for my display of bunnies this week.  This mismatched set was passed down from my in-laws.  After some research on the internet I discovered the bowl, "Visiting the Cottage," is a different subject than the cup.  The cup, "The Proposal"  above shows Mr. Bunnykins kissing his fiancee after his proposal.
Royal Doulton Bunnykins
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Royal Doulton Bunnykins Chinaware and Figurines are popular ceramic designs manufactured as nursery dishes and collectible statuettes.
The chinaware line originated with artwork by Barbara Vernon Bailey, the daughter of Cuthbert Bailey, general manager of Doulton during the 1930s. Unbeknownst to the public, Vernon was not a professional illustrator, but a nun in the Augustinian Canonesses of the Lateran.[1]
Introduced in 1934, Bunnykins tableware depicted Mr. and Mrs. Bunnykins and other rabbits dressed in human clothing, in colourful rural and small-town English scenes, transfer-printed on white china. The earliest pieces, signed by Vernon, are quite rare and highly prized. Bunnykins china was used by Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret and thus became a popular present given as christening and birthday gifts in middle-class English homes.
Figurines by Charles Noke featuring various Bunnykins characters began in 1939. The first line consisted of only six designs. All factories were closed for the duration of World War II, bringing production to a halt, and thus these six figurines have also become very rare. Following the war, production of Bunnykins figurines did not restart until Royal Doulton purchased the Beswick factory in 1969. After this, Bunnykins were numbered with the prefix DB and are still produced to this day.
The Bunnykins figurine line is famous for the large number of professions, historical and literary figures, and traditional costumes interpreted as rabbits. Named figurines include Policeman Bunnykins, Nurse Bunnykins, Sir Lancelot Bunnkykins, Betsy Ross Bunnykins, Lapplander Bunnykins, Fortune Teller Bunnykins, and more. In 2005 a Bunnykins figurine honoring Barbara Vernon was produced. Titled "Sister Barbara," it depicts a cloistered nun at her drawing table, presumably painting the original Bunnykins design

I love the bunnies hopping around the top of the bowl and cup.  Here is the scene on the other side of the cup, "The Proposal," showing Mr. Bunnykins on his knees proposing.

And what better tablecloth than another bunny throw!

  I found this website regarding Royal Doulton logos and backstamps (here).  It shows "Bunnykins" backstamp for the bowl is c1934 - 1937.  The backstamp for the cup with the lion coloured brown is c1937-1953.

Believe it or not I still have some bunnies hopping around my home to show you.  


  1. Just love all the Bunnies..... Especially the childrens china!!
    Easter Hugs!!

  2. You had me at "Royal Doulton"

    I immediately thought of Hyacinth on Keeping up Appearances! it made me chuckle.
    I've never known anybody but her to own "Royal Doulton"!!!

    I must say- I'm impressed with yours. The subject matter is precious. 'the proposal' , How do we know that Mr. Bunny wasn't going to the cottage to propose?

    Very cute! glad you showed them. Love your collection of cups, saucers, (now this bowl) and all the bunnies!

  3. The china is adorable! Is the chicken made out of shells?

    Happy Easter!

    ~ Tracy

  4. In answer to the questions above. Yes, the chicken is made out of shells. My Mom, who had retired to Florida, gave it to my MIL as a gift years ago and then it passed down to us. It is cute isn't it? I put it there to support the cup but it is appropriate for Easter too. Thanks for the nice comments. I think this may be the only Royal Doulton I have and I have it only because my in-laws had it. LOL!

    Teacup Lane (Sandy)