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Like the Thomas Minton design made in England, this china pattern features the river, bridge, a fence built around the house, and an enormous willow tree, but that is where the similarities end.

The Australian design isn't blue, unless you mean true blue. It does have fairies but they are not maudlin, lovelorn souls, zero flail quotient. Red, gold and bronze, these fairies are clear, cool and candid folk. They look you in the eye and laugh. The pattern is open and generous, just as suited to the home cooked meal as to fine gateaux.

On the left the main house is that of a mandarin haired fairy, whose daughters stand with her. Around the estate is an ornamental fence, built to keep the foxes out. A rooster, hens, chickens, two ducks, mice, two dogs and a cat are woven into the pattern surrounding the house. A spider, symbol of the spirit of grandmothers, weaves in a corner. There is a giant willow tree on the grounds overlooking a pond. The unhappy fox looks through the fence.

Left and right are separated by a river. On the banks three great eucalypts reach up into the sky, and a bridge arcs between two wheaten fields. The bridge depicts three geeky friends bringing food drinks and two larger dogs. One of the geeks is skimming stones from the bridge. On the left is the humble house where the geeks live. A magpie flies overhead singing a Sunday morning chorale.

The catalogue shows a table striped with sunlight, the familiar pattern brings warmth and cheer to a table of banana pancakes, bacon, maple syrup, cream and icecream, both casual and decadent. Cups equally suitable for coffee with cream and honey, or for a short black or Jasmine tea.

This pattern, while being Summery and distinctively Australian, is also reminiscent of the whimsical charm of French designs. Elegant use of red, green and sepia creates a memorable setting for evening or morning events alike.

Truly a memorable gift.

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