History of the Artist :
One of seven children, Susannah Margaretta 'Daisy' Makeig-Jones was born in 1881 in a small mining village near Rotherham, where her father was a GP. From an early age, Daisy showed she had an artistic talent and when her father moved his practice to Torquay, she entered the town's School of Art.
After a short spell at a London school of art, she managed, through a relative, to obtain an introduction to Cecil Wedgwood, at that time managing director of the company. Despite his fears that a doctor's daughter might find it difficult to adjust to factory life, in 1909 Daisy joined the company as a trainee designer. Wedgwood need not have worried. Her art school training helped considerably and by 1914 she was considered good enough to be given her own studio. Fairies bring good luck, they say.
Daisy's run started by being placed in the studio next to the one where trials were being carried out on the new glazes that were to add so much to her inspired designs. There, she was able to watch the female painters at work and pass to them water colour drawings of her Fairyland ideas so that, in effect, they became part of the experimentation. In fact, Daisy subsequently carried out her own test firings with glazes of different colours and lustre that were later adopted when production began - just nine months after being taken on as a staff designer. Impact of the ware on the public taste at this time was phenomenal and all the very best shops clamoured to obtain pieces for sale.
At first, decoration featured butterflies, dragons, fish, birds and other naturalistic designs in stunning colour schemes that were such a welcome relief during the drab and austere war years. However, these earlier pieces should not be confused with true Fairyland Lustre. This first appeared in 1915, by which time Daisy's imagination was beginning to run riot. Rich blues, purple, orange (her favourite colour) yellow, green and gold, were all worked together with pixies, elves and sprites in ways reminiscent of book illustrations by Edmund Dulac and Arthur Rackham.
Like all clever pictures, the harder you look, the more you see: elves playing leapfrog; spiders spinning evil webs; rainbows over romantic castles; ghostly woods and apparitions in the Land of Illusion. Interestingly, rather than being figments of an over active imagination, many Fairyland designs have strong links with folklore, legend and tradition, though clearly, Daisy's fairy people did things their way, resulting in one of the most remarkable fine china designs ever conceived.