Frequently Asked Questions

Q: The process of creating and maintaining this Guide must be very costly. How can the Tea Leaf Club afford to make this resource available for free?

A: The Tea Leaf Club and the Tea Leaf Education Fund (two separate 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations) share the commitment to educate Club members and the public about Tea Leaf Ironstone China. For many years, Club members have been contributing funds to the Tea Leaf Education Fund with the intent to education the public on Tea Leaf. The Club and Education Fund have invested more than $10,000 to make this resource a reality!


Q: I sell Tea Leaf online and would like to use your photos to advertise my piece. Your pictures are so much better than the ones I could take myself. Is this OK?

A: No – all photographs on these pages are copyright to the Tea Leaf Club and may not be used in any publication or online without the express written permission of the Tea Leaf Club. You are welcome to use them for your personal use and education, but you are not granted permission to take credit for these photos as your own.


Q: I inherited or have a collection and have been able to identify and learn more about my pieces through the Identification Guide. Is it possible to figure out how much my Tea Leaf is worth and get current market values through this system?

A: The Tea Leaf Identification Guide is an educational resource intended to help you identify the maker, body style, decorative motif, approximate dates of manufacture and country of origin of your Tea Leaf, along with other attributes about the potter and the piece. The Identification Guide is not intended to be an appraisal tool. The Tea Leaf Club does not provide appraisal services.

The Tea Leaf Club has, however, created a Tea Leaf Ironstone Value Guide to help you look at your Tea Leaf through the lens of age, condition, body style, etc. to determine if the item you are wondering about is common or rare. The Value Guide can be found on our website at


Q: Some of your search terms are confusing to me. I don’t know what you mean, for example, by a Body Style, decorative motif or footprint. Help!

A: Those unfamiliar with Tea Leaf might initially find these terms confusing. Tea Leaf was made on nearly 200 different body styles by more than 50 potters with dozens of decorative motifs. The Tea Leaf Club website will soon have sections to help you better understand these terms and make better use of this online Tea Leaf Identification Guide resource.


Q: This site is great, may I incorporate it into my own website?

A: You are welcome to add a link to your website to the Tea Leaf Identification Guide, but not “imbed” our site into your own as if the content belonged to you.

Copyright Notice

All of the material on this web site is Copyright © 2015 by Tea Leaf Club International and the Tea Leaf Education Fund. All rights reserved. No part of this website may be reproduced, published, distributed, displayed or copies in print or digitally without written permission of the Tea Leaf Club. You may not, without the Tea Leaf Club’s express written permission, "mirror" any material contained on this web site on any other server.

No part of this web site may be modified or changed or exploited in any way used for derivative works, or offered for sale, or used to construct any kind of public database without the express written permission of the Tea Leaf Club.

Permission is granted to download and print the materials on this web site for personal, non-commercial use.


Q: I love collecting Tea Leaf, talking about Tea Leaf, learning and sharing information with my friends about Tea Leaf. Can I use your pictures for a presentation I am doing for my local antique collectors group?

A: As long as the presentation does not result in a printed document and is not published and posted online, you may use these photos. Please credit the Tea Leaf Club for the photos and mention that the pictures are the copyright to the Club.


Q: I have some Tea Leaf pieces that are not pictured in the Tea Leaf Identification Guide. Do you want me to send you my photos?

A: The more pictures we have available to us the better. We currently have thousands of Tea Leaf photographs and the process for us to get them loaded online will take years. We started with a small sampling of items but would love for you to return to this website frequently as the contents will be ever-changing. If you think your Tea Leaf piece is rare or unusual, we’d love for you to send us your photos and become a part of this exciting project.


Q: How do I learn more about Tea Leaf?

A: Of course, the absolute BEST way to learn about Tea Leaf Ironstone China is to become a member of the Tea Leaf Club. Join with other collectors, read the newsletter, attend the national convention and regional meetings, and learn from our educational publications. The following printed materials are also available.

"Handbook of Tea Leaf Body Styles"
A project of the Education Committee of the Tea Leaf Club International, published in 1995 and updated in 2000 and 200666. Published by TLCI. Available for purchase from the Tea Leaf Club. Not a price guide.

"Grandma's Tea Leaf Ironstone"
By Annise Heaivilin, c. 1981, republished 1996 with no changes or corrections. Not a price guide.

"American Tea Leaf: Manufacturers, Potters and Decorators"
By Julie Rich, c. 1992, Published by Tea Leaf Club International. Available online.

"Tea Leaf Readings"
The Official Newsletter of the Tea Leaf Club International, available to Tea Leaf Club members


Q: How can I contact the Tea Leaf Club?

A: or use our Contact Form.


Q: How can I add a bookmark for the Online Guide onto my mobile device?

A: To save a button to this website onto your screen follow the instructions below for the type of device you have. 

Apple Devices

Click on the share icon iOS share button in the center bottom of your screen then choose ‘Add to Home Screen’.


Android Devices

Click on the menu button android sample on your device then choose ‘Add Shortcut’.