Josiah Spode I effectively finalised the formula, and appears to have been doing so between 17. The importance of his innovations has been disputed, being played down by Professor Sir Arthur Church in his English Porcelain, estimated practically by William Burton, and being very highly esteemed by Spode's contemporary Alexandre Brongniart, director of the Sèvres manufactory, in his Traité des Arts Céramiques, and by M. As the understanding of the work of the early potters depends in part on the study of actual specimens, the loss was both aesthetic and scientific.
The business was carried on through his sons at Stoke until April 1833.
His early products comprised earthenwares such as creamware (a fine cream-coloured earthenware) and pearlware (a fine earthenware with a bluish glaze) as well as a range of stonewares including black basalt, caneware, and jasper which had been popularised by Josiah Wedgwood.
The history and products of the Spode factory have inspired generations of historians and collectors, and a useful interactive online exhibition was launched in October 2010.
Josiah Spode is known to have worked for Thomas Whieldon from the age of 16 until he was 21.
These designs, including edge-patterns which had to be manipulated in sections, were cut out using scissors and applied to the biscuit-fired ware (using a white fabric), itself prepared with a gum solution.
Blue underglaze transfer became a standard feature of Staffordshire pottery.
Spode also used on-glaze transfers for other wares.
One copy is in the Joseph Downes collection at Winterthur Museum, Gardens, and Library, Delaware, USA.
After some early trials Spode perfected a stoneware that came closer to porcelain than any previously, and introduced his "Stone-China" in 1813.