Vest Keramiek Gouda - van Woerden aardewerk - collection  vase jug  identification  model glaze Oliva Negro Rubens

Vest Keramiek Gouda - van Woerden Gouda Aardewerk - characteristics

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Recognizing Vest Keramiek - van Woerden Pottery

Used characteristics are:

- Sticker and the name "van Woerden" on the bottom
- Red , black or white clay
- Flat bottom with a mould line across the bottom
- Bevelled perimeter of the bottom
- Small round felt pads on the bottom
- Numbers on the bottom
- Glaze on the outside
- Glaze on the inside

Vest compared with Jopeko, Wather Becht, Prosman and Duif's Keramiek
Some factories made vases that are hard to distinguish from Vest. Differences are mentioned at the end of this page. You can also click on the yellow button.

Tip: To see more details you can enlarge a picture by clicking on it.

vase  Van Woerden - bottom Van Woerden Holland red  clay

Sticker or on the bottom the name "van Woerden"

Many vases from Vest are not labelled with a number or name. However some, have a sticker with a name or a bottom with the name "VAN WOERDEN". These vases are easy to recognize.

The old vases wih on the bottom "VAN WOERDEN HOLLAND" are made of red baking clay.

There is a sticker with "van Woerden" or "van Woerden GOUDA AARDEWERK". This vases are before 1973.

After 1973 there are stickers of "Vest Keramiek" with a picture of a castle with two towers.
There are four different stickers.

Vest Keramiek - van Woerden  -  stickers

Vest keramiek  / van Woerden  -  bottom red and white clay

Red, black and white clay

In the early period, the vases were made of red clay that was rotated on a turntable. This was very labour intensive. Later on, a model was first made by hand. Then there was made a mould consisting of two halves. The mould was casted with red-baked or black-baked clay. Due to the casting, much more vases could be produced. Red and black clay were used only in the beginning. Later on only white German clay was used. The vases with white clay are the most common ones.

Vest keramiek - Van Woerden  bodem rode en witte klei
Red-baked clay was sometimes used as casting clay or on a turntable. If you see red-baked clay with a mould line across the bottom, it's almost sure that Vest made this vase.

You can find photos from the factory of Vest that shows how vases are casted, on the Marius van Woerden website ( .

Vest keramiek / Van Woerden  -  characteristics bottom

Flat bottom with a mould line in the middle

Almost all vest vases have a flat bottom. Often there is a dividing line or seam on the bottom in the middle. This line indicates the place where the two halves of the mould were connected.

Other factories use also this method. So a flat bottom alone is not enough to determine if you're dealing with Vest. In addition, there are some Vest vases with a bottom with a raised edge. This vases has mostly a casted nummer.

On the right is a flat bottom of a vase, which Vest has not made.

The photos below show bottoms of Vest vases. With angular vases the mould line is sometimes diagonally. The two halves are always the mirror image of each other.

See also at the end of this page: Vest compared with Jopeko, Wather Becht, Prosman and Duif's Keramiek .

Van Woerden  - Vest flat bottom with a seam in the middle

Vest Keramiek - Van Woerden  -  Angled cut off edge of the bottom

Bevelled outer perimeter of the base

The outer perimeter of the bottom is usually bevelled by grinding.
There are two Vest vases on the right picture. The perimeter is only bevelled at the left vase.

I have never seen vases from German factories with this bevelled perimeters. Sometimes the Dutch company Prosman does the same with the bottom. Vases from Prosman and Vest can easily be mixed up.

See also at the end of this page: Vest compared with Jopeko, Wather Becht, Prosman and Duif's Keramiek .

Small round felt pads

Because the bottom often was rough, Vest put 3 or 4 small felt pads on the bottom. Most are green but also gray and beige occur. When there are no rounds of felt anymore, you can still see where they have been. Some other factories also used round pieces of felt. So it's not really a proof that you're dealing with Vest, but it is a clue.

See also at the end of this page: Vest compared with Jopeko, Wather Becht, Prosman and Duif's Keramiek .

Vest Keramiek / van Woerden  -  bottom with Small rounds of felt

Numbers on the bottom

Many Vest vases have no number or sticker. If there is a number, it usually consist of one or two letters followed by one or two digits, such as NG 25 or K3. There is also a 100/200 series of small vases.
The numbers are usually written on the base with felt pen or pencil. There is often a point between letter and number. Numbers with a frame are also printed in ink. Often the frame is not or partial visible.

Prosman also used the same way of numbering.

Van Woerden  - Vest bodem  characteristics  bottom numbers

Usually the bottom of Vest is flat, but sometimes there is a raised edge or sunken area. These vases has a number, casted in the clay.

See also at the end of this page: Vest compared with Jopeko, Wather Becht, Prosman and Duif's Keramiek .

Vest keramiek  - van Woerden  -  characteristics  bottom numbers inscribed


Vest has made some characteristic glazes. Glazes with a lava structure and glazes that are smooth. Click button glazes to see names.

Below are the Fat Lava glazes that are not found in other factories.
These glazes are matt with sometimes a shiny background.
Other factories made glazes that look similar to Vest, but there are always differences.

See also at the end of this page: Vest compared with Jopeko, Wather Becht, Prosman and Duif's Keramiek .

 Vest Keramiek - van Woerden  -  characteristics glazes

Smooth glazes can be solid or mixed and half matt or shiny.
Below are examples of striking colours.
Vest Keramiek - van Woerden  - Vest  characteristics glazes
Discreet glazes with overflowing colours.
Vest Keramiek - van Woerden  - Vest  characteristics glazes
Discreet glazes with beige and brown colours. Vest has also made ceramics with a white glaze.
Vest keramiek - Van Woerden  characteristics glazes

Vest Keramiek - van Woerden  characteristics  glazesbinnenkant

Inside glazes

An important characteristic of Vest Keramiek is the glaze of the inside. Vases had to be watertight, so they pay special attention to this glaze.

The glaze is always shiny. First the indoor glaze was dark brown. Later on the glaze was switched to a coulorless transparent one. The inside has the colour of the white clay. For a quite long period, both glazes were used together.

The picture on the right shows examples of the glazes used by Vest. The four lower vases are very common. The three upper ones are older vases.

Vest compared with Jopeko, Walther Becht, Prosman and Duif's Keramiek

There are several manufacturers that have made products that often are mixed up with Vest. Examples are the German factories Jopeko and Walther Becht and the Dutch companies Prosman and Duif's Keramiek.
Below you can read how you can recognize Vest.

Prosman jug  TK20 1 Prosman
Prosman was an accountant of Vest. After the brothers van Woerden stopped with the production in Gouda, Prosman started his own factory in St Philipsland. In the beginning he was helped by Hugo van Woerden.

The brown jug on the right is made by Prosman but it has also many Vest characteristics.
Similarities are: the brown colour, the shiny inside, the flat white clay bottom with bevelled perimeter of the bottom, a stamped number TK 20 and three round green felt pads.
However, this jug TK20 is not made by Vest. The glaze is far too smooth and the ribs are too flat. You can see it better if you enlarge the picture.
Vest  keramiek L2 en Prosman V11 Other vases from Prosman are easier to recognize.
On the left are two models that are not the same size but still looks very similar. The left (L2) is Vest and the right (V11) is Prosman.

Apart from the number, there are also other differences:
- At Vest the rings are thicker and run in a spiral.
- At Prosman the rings are thinner and smoother and they run in circles.
- At Vest the glaze is not as shiny and smooth.

Generally Prosman has simple models with simple colours. In general Prosman has simple models with simple colours. Some glazes seem to be that of Vest because Porsman got the recipes from Hugo van Woerden.
The glazes is smoother and more shiny.
Prosman also has used a lava glaze resembling Negro. His coating of lava is much thinner.

verschil tussen glazuur Negro bij Vest en Prosman
Vest Keramiek vase T2 and  vase Prosman

On the picture right are three vases. The middle vase is a Prosman copy of the Vest vases T2.
All three vases have no bevelled outer perimeter of the base.

The Prosman vase is smaller and has a thinner foot. The ridges are at Prosman much smoother, just like the glaze that is also shiny.

Also Vest vases sometimes differ in size. This is caused by the clay. The white German clay shrank more.
Vest Keramiek  and Jopeko blok vases 2 Jopeko
Jopeko is a German company that used glazes that look very similar to Vest's glazes. Vest made a variety of models (round and square) with one or more holes in it. Jopeko made a few one. Square-edged one-hole. On the picture there are Jopeko vases on the right side and similar Vest vases on the left.
This block vases are the only Jopeko vases with a flat bottom and without numbers.

Vest Keramiek  and Jopeko vases bottom

The differences are small:
- The Jopeko models are slightly bigger and the holes are sometimes smaller.

- The Jopeko models are rounded at the edges. Vest has sharper corners.

- At Vest the edges of the bottom are usually angled cut off. This is never the case at Jopeko.

- Jopeko made famous glazes like Paris and Alaska. They are different from those of Vest.

Jopeko vase  glaze Paris Jopeko vase  glaze  Alaska

3 Walther Becht - Oberhessische Keramik
Walther Becht has made some models with a flat bottom. These models often have one or more holes. Sometimes there is an ink stamp with two numbers on the bottom. The second number indicates the size.

Walther Becht vases are easily identified by the glazes that greatly differ from those of Vest. This is clearly seen on the photos below.

Walther Becht and Vest keramiek

Duif's keramiek with kind of Vest  bottom
4 Duif's Keramiek
Duif's Keramiek is a wholesaler that does not make pottery itself. They put their own sticker on the products they sell .

Some models with a hole and a flat bottom are advertised as Vest. The model at the right was my first "Vest" vase I bought. After contact with Marius van Woerden, he wrote that he did not make it.

There are two similarities with Vest Keramiek. It has a flat bottom with the seam in the middle and the model has a round hole. All other characteristics of Vest (such as the inside and outside glazes) are absent.
Vest  vase NK 2 and unknown vase with standring 5 Unknown Factories
Vest has also made models similar to those of other factories. In this case the form of the vase is not reliable for an identification. Usually, the glaze and/or bottom are different.

The two jugs on the right picture are an example. The right one is from an unknown factory and the left one with sticker is from Vest. They have the same model, but not the same size.

You can see that the unknown vase is not Vest because:

- The bottom has a raised edge and is not flat. Vest only has such an edge in combination with an inscribed number and white clay.

- The white inside glaze is not shiny.
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website made by Cor Gijben - last update 10 Februari 2019