I first discovered antique cheese slabs when I saw them in a shelter magazine many years ago. For some time afterwards, I kept looking and looking in antique stores and at flea markets, but to no avail. I didn’t even know what they were called at the time. How naive I was! These antique dairy slabs are incredibly rare, and unbelievably expensive, with originals selling for literally thousands of dollars. Once I found out how rare they were, it all made sense. No wonder I never came across any! And if I had, I certainly would have been shocked to learn how valuable they were. Originally, they were used to display dairy products, “cheese” or “butter”, etc, in English groceries over a century ago. They have since grown in popularity, and of course, this has driven up the prices.
Luckily, there are amazing reproductions to be found. And the best I’ve seen are the ones by Emma Bridgewater Pottery, sold by Joanne Hudson Basics. Her pottery is based on traditional English farmhouse designs. Each piece is made in England, hand painted and hand finished. Below is an amazing butler’s pantry with a mix of antique dairy slabs and the reproductions by Emma Bridgewater. So cute!!
|An actual antique butter slab|
|Another real antique slab|
Below are the reproductions offered on Joanne Hudson:
I’ve finally broken down and ordered the cheese platter and the large rectangular butter platter. I’d love to one day be able to get a real antique one, but for the time being, these will have to do. Normally I’m not a huge fan of reproduction items, really preferring to get the real thing if I can. But in this case, not only is the price prohibitive, but the repros are done so well, they are collectible in their own right. And they look so amazing in a white kitchen! Can’t wait to get mine so I can do a little vignette in the kitchen with them. And of course, use them to serve cheese as well.