Belgium (BE)/ Ireland (IE)/ Denmark (DK)/ Sweden (SE)
If we look at the harvest of piggy banks from Belgium, the focus immediately goes to the Flemish pottery, but other piggy banks will also have been made (I have a few). Poterie Flamande or Flemish pottery or folk pottery originated in the period of the British Arts and Crafts movement and the Art Nouveau around 1890 as a revival of crafts in West Flanders. These are white-fired pottery, turned or moulded, finished with lead glaze and with a typical flamed colour palette. This industry flourished until about 1930-40, including in the workshops in Ghent, Bruges, Kortrijk, Roeselare, Sint-Niklaas, Bredene and Torhout. Incidentally, this area continues to north-western France, where De Bruyn, among others, made beautiful piggy banks. Well-known names when it comes to Flemish piggy banks are Maes, Noseda and Société Belge de Poterie Flamande (Kortrijk). Discovering who made what, the provenance of Flemish pottery, is a chore and sometimes impossible. In the small area in West Flanders, craftsmen came and went from Kortrijk to Bruges, Torhout and vice versa. As far as France. The potters brought their own designs with them (that was still possible then, apparently) and identical models were made in different (competitive) workshops (this was usual practice then, apparently) and identical models were made in different (competitive) workshops.
For many years there was a derogatory appreciation of much Flemish pottery because it was associated with the kitsch of the lower and middle classes. Fortunately there is now a revival, only unfortunately there are not many pieces of Flemish pottery left. And certainly very few piggy banks.
Republic of Ireland
All I have are a souvenir (1), one green SylvaC (made in Staffordshire, England by the way) and 3 of Ceramics Kilrush. I wish I had a lot more piggy banks from the Republic of Ireland. There should be many, in different shapes, but until now I have not found them. We once visited the Belleek Pottery. Nice pottery, but no piggy banks of the old fashioned type. I know of the village of Kilrush with a history of (long gone) potteries. So there are just in few in my collection.
Denmark has a history in pottery factories. Concerning piggy banks Knabstrup Lervarefabrik (translation: Earthenware factory) was well known. Nice piggy banks with the bottom stoneware and top glaze, as Muggins in the UK does. Knapstrub closed in 1989. And of course there a more Danish piggy banks.
Including the small piggy bank below (length 12 cm) that caused me some headaches in terms of 'provenance'. That it belonged to Hegnetslund Lervarefabrik (1892-1991) seemed clear given the mark on the belly. But what meant: "Til nóset vi fare - derfore vi spare". By raising this on Facebook I found out that Nóset is the name of a large beach pavilion at Ebeltoft, called Nóset Strandgaarden. The translation of the edge lettering is therefore "We save to go to Nóset" [to party]. Period 1950-1960. Nóset management confirmed that this was a souvenir at the time. You could then show that you had been ER (like many generations before you). A typical 'conversation piece'.
Both made by Hegnetslund Lervarefabrik (1892-1991). On the right one the frase: "Til nóset vi fare - derfore vi spare". Length 12 cm.
According to experts a remake of a 19th century model with modified colors. Period 1900-1930. Length 21.5 cm. Possibly Danish.
Knabstrup Keramik (1897-1988) is an old Danish ceramic brand whose factory was closed in 1988. Its history originally goes all the way back to 1622, when Knabstrup Teglværk was founded. In 1977, Knabstrup Keramik is launched again on a modest scale with the ambition to focus on ceramic handicrafts with great respect for the history as the original tile factory (Teglværk). Just no more piggy banks.
For a long time I did not focus on Sweden as a country with a piggy bank tradition, but since 2017 I buy them on Tradera.com. Striking is that many sellers state that there piggy bank is not for export, is for Swedish buyers only. Could be protection of own heritage, but is a pity for my collection.
The red Dala Horse (Swedish: Dala häst) is a symbol of Sweden. The little wooden horse originated in the landscape Dalarna (in the middle of Sweden). The Dala piggy bank, Swedish folk-art, is made of (two parts) of wood and is as the horse an old tradition. This Dala pig was used as a model for the earthenware piggy banks, made of red clay and traditionally coloured red and hand painted with flowers. Swedish earthenware (mainly tableware) is famous with brands as Nittsjõ, Guldkroken, Rorstrand (the 3 even made/ made piggy banks!). Holmegaard, of the glass design piggy banks, is also Swedish.
RörStrand, design Marianne Westman. Period 1950-1960. Number 2 of 100 (100/2). Length 21,5 cm.
The piggy bank on the left had an illegible potter's signature. However, there was also SKAN ** under it. Which, after searching, meant that it came from Skansens Krukmakeri (jug maker/potter's shop). A month later I also bought the piggy bank on the right in Sweden (via Tradera.com) with a very clear signature. And a legible signature. That is, if you know which name goes with it. I had received a list of names (signaturer.se) of all Swedish potters and searched it until I had a match. The potter is Kai Krebs, an independent potter who, after his training, worked in the Krukmakeriet of Skansen from 1956 to 1962. My search is now over for both piggy banks from the Swedish Skansen (open-air museum near Stockholm). They are from the period 1956 – 1962. Made by Kai Krebs in Skansens Krukmakeri. Length 13.5 cm. This was quite a challenging quest, which I could not have solved myself with the help of the PR department of the Skansen Open Air Museum. The signature list is also useful for my other Swedish piggy banks.