The Most Valuable Haviland China: A Collector‘s Guide

Since its founding in 1842, Haviland & Co. has been synonymous with some of the finest porcelain ever produced. For nearly two centuries, this renowned French company has created exquisite china cherished by everyone from royalty and heads of state to luxury hotels and discerning collectors worldwide. The Haviland name represents the pinnacle of craftsmanship, artistry and elegance in fine tableware.

Today, antique and vintage Haviland china is highly prized by collectors, with rare specimens commanding substantial sums at auction. If you‘re fortunate enough to inherit or acquire Haviland pieces, you may be curious about their value. Which patterns and sets are most sought-after by collectors? How can you determine if your Haviland china is worth a significant amount? And if you wish to sell, what‘s the best way to fetch top dollar?

To answer these questions, let‘s first delve into the key factors that make certain Haviland china so valuable. Then we‘ll explore 14 of the most expensive Haviland pieces and sets ever sold. Finally, we‘ll provide expert tips for identifying, valuing, preserving and selling your treasured Haviland porcelain.

What Makes Haviland China Valuable?

Several elements can contribute to the collectible value of Haviland china:

Age: Generally, the older the piece, the more valuable it is. Haviland has been producing china since the 1840s, so some antique specimens are nearly 200 years old. Pieces from the late 19th and early 20th centuries tend to be highly desirable.

Rarity: Certain Haviland patterns and designs were produced in very limited quantities, making them exceptionally rare today. Generally, the rarer the piece, the higher its value to collectors.

Pattern and Design: Some Haviland patterns are more popular and collectible than others. Highly detailed, hand-painted designs with rich colors and gilding often command a premium.

Historical Significance: Haviland created custom china for many of the world‘s most prestigious individuals and institutions, from U.S. presidents to European royalty. Pieces with a documented history of use in places like the White House hold special value.

Condition: As with any antique, condition plays a huge role in value. Haviland pieces that show little to no signs of wear, with no chips, cracks, crazing or fading of color will be worth far more than damaged items.

Maker‘s Marks: Checking the back stamp or marker‘s mark on a piece of Haviland can help date it and verify its authenticity, which provides clues to its value.

The 14 Most Valuable Haviland China Pieces Sold at Auction

Now that we know some of the key value indicators, let‘s look at 14 of the most expensive Haviland china pieces and sets that have sold at auction in recent years. All sale prices are listed in U.S. dollars and accurate as of August 2022.

1. Haviland Limoges "Matignon" Pattern Service – $14,000

Sold in October 2021, this spectacular 175-piece set in Haviland‘s iconic "Matignon" pattern is the priciest auction sale we could find. Featuring a stately green border, the set is dated back to around 1941. A full service in pristine condition, it includes place settings for over a dozen people, plus dozens of serving pieces.

2. Abraham Lincoln Presidential China Dinner Plate – $9,200

Though only a single plate in fair condition, this piece has immense historical value. It bears the "Solferino" pattern selected by Mary Todd Lincoln for White House state dinners. Records show it was part of the original Lincoln presidential china order in 1861, making it a priceless artifact of American history.

3. Haviland Limoges "Oasis Green" Set – $8,000

This pristine and extensive "Oasis Green" set sold in 2021 for double its auction estimate! A modern yet classic pattern, this service for 12 features a whopping 150 pieces and sold for an impressive sum despite being produced in 1998.

4. Haviland Ritz Club Burgundy Service – $7,100

From 2002-2013, Haviland produced their "Ritz Club" china in a lush burgundy colorway for the legendary Ritz hotel. This partial service for 12 still commanded over $7k at auction, even with signs of use. No longer in production, Ritz Club sets will likely only increase in value.

5. 20th Century Limoges "Marjolaine" Pattern – $6,956

Dating back to 1983, this sprawling 171-piece set in the floral "Marjolaine" pattern brought in nearly $7,000 in France. With delicate bouquets and blue palms, it‘s a quintessential example of Haviland‘s signature style.

6. Limoges "Oasis Green" Service For 12 – $6,736

Another appearance of the modern-yet-timeless "Oasis Green" pattern, this set was part of Haviland‘s Grand Siècle collection inspired by 17th-century French design. Pristine condition helped it achieve this hefty sum.

7. Composite "Val de Loire" Pattern Assembled Set – $6,465

Produced in the 1990s, this huge set contains both dinner and breakfast wares in the classic "Val de Loire" pattern. A complete service plus accessories like trays and baskets added to the value.

8. Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Fish Plates – $5,500

A rare set of "Fish" pattern plates made for 19th U.S. President Rutherford B. Hayes around 1880. Hand-signed by Hayes‘ White House china designer, these are legitimate pieces of Presidential history.

9. 63-Piece "Claude Monet" Set For Tiffany – $4,500

In an elegant yellow and blue color block design, this service was based on china Monet used at his Giverny home. Produced for Tiffany from 1991-2010, it‘s gained value since Haviland discontinued it.

10. Early 20th Century 221-Piece Set – $4,400

Intricate, colorful and extensive, this set features 221 pieces in a floral pattern from the early 1900s. Proof positive that size and condition matter hugely when it comes to value.

11. "Colbert" Blue Porcelain Set – $4,134

This boldly beautiful set in Haviland‘s "Colbert" pattern features dramatic midnight blue and gold. Made from 1988-1992, this complete service contains hard-to-find accessories like a soup tureen and covered dishes.

12. 205-Piece "Louveciennes" Service – $3,800

The classic "Louveciennes" or Marie Antoinette pattern is one of Haviland‘s most iconic designs from 1974 onward. This massive set was a great score for some lucky American buyer!

13. "Drop Rose" (Schleiger 55) Partial Set – $3,750

Dating between 1880-1930, this small set of 18 "Drop Rose" pieces by famed Haviland artist Joseph Schleiger still garnered nearly $4k at auction. It‘s exceptional artistry and age were key to its high hammer price.

14. "Jardin d‘Hiver" Table Service for 12 – $3,677

Though produced in the 1990s, this "Jardin d‘Hiver" set still achieved an impressive sum, nearly doubling its estimate. With an elegant blue border and dark green foliage, it proves Haviland has continued to create covetable designs decade after decade.

Identifying & Valuing Your Haviland China

If you suspect you may have valuable Haviland china, there are steps you can take to assess its worth:

Inspect It Carefully: First, give your piece(s) a thorough once-over. Look for any signs of damage or wear. Generally, pristine condition is essential for fetching the highest values.

Identify The Pattern: See if you can determine the exact pattern name of your pieces. Haviland‘s website has an extensive pattern archive you can browse. If that fails, try pattern identification databases like Replacements.com.

Check For Markings: Flip your pieces over and look for any back stamps, signatures, or numbers. Certain marks can help date your piece and prove its authenticity. Consult online guides to Haviland marks for help deciphering them.

Get An Expert Opinion: For any pieces you believe are particularly old or valuable, it‘s wise to get a professional appraisal. Contact a reputable antiques dealer or auction house specializing in fine china to request an evaluation.

Compare To Past Sales: See what similar pieces have sold for recently on sites like Invaluable, 1st Dibs, eBay, and china replacement sites. This can give you a ballpark idea of your pieces‘ value.

Caring For Your Haviland China

To preserve the value of your Haviland pieces, it‘s crucial to care for them properly:

  • Always hand-wash pieces gently in warm water with mild dish soap. Never clean them in the dishwasher, as this can cause microscopic scratches and damage.

  • Store pieces in a china cabinet with plenty of space between each item. Never stack pieces, as this risks chips and cracks.

  • If you must ship Haviland, use copious cushioning and sturdy double-boxing. Pad each piece carefully and don‘t let them touch. It‘s worth paying extra for shipping insurance for valuable items.

Where To Sell Haviland China

If you‘re looking to sell your valuable Haviland pieces, you have a few options:

Auction Houses: For high-value sets and historical items, selling through a reputable auction house may be your best bet to reach serious collectors. Look for auction houses that specialize in antiquities and decorative arts.

Antique Dealers: You may be able to sell your pieces on consignment through antique shops that specialize in fine china and porcelain. Some may also buy items outright for resale.

Replacements & China Matching Services: If you have individual pieces or partial sets, you can often sell these through china replacements services online.

Online Marketplaces: While selling on eBay or Etsy is an option, beware that you may not get the best value for high-end pieces here. These sites are often better for more casual collectors.

Haviland China: An Enduring Legacy

From its roots in 1840s France to the present day, Haviland has remained one of the world‘s premier porcelain makers. Perennial favorites of royals, dignitaries, luxury hotels and discerning private collectors, Haviland china is synonymous with elegance and prestige.

For nearly two centuries, Haviland‘s master artisans have set the standard for quality in fine tableware, producing some of the most exquisite (and valuable) porcelain pieces in existence. Cherished for their unmatched beauty and craftsmanship, vintage and antique Haviland pieces are sure to remain highly coveted collectibles for generations to come.

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