Porcelain figures generally predate the earthenware figures we collect, and in some cases Staffordshire's figure potters mimicked porcelain figures to create cheaper wares. We see this again and again. Let me quickly add that most Staffordshire figures are NOT derived from porcelain models. Instead, they simply mirror everyday life through the eyes of the potters. Of course, porcelain lovers appreciate the refined exquisiteness of porcelain. I like the earthy comfort of pottery, so when I figure is available in both pottery and porcelain, pottery wins out each time, by my reckoning!
We see the same thought process at work with the design of the figures of the Welch Tailor and Wife.
My interest in design sources dictates that I look closely at porcelain figures...and on rare occasions I admire them, but never enough to buy one. I am amazed by the longevity of the designs: the Welch Tailor made in Staffordshire in the 1820s looked just like the one made at Meissen 80 years earlier.
This Derby figure form--an early 19thC example of a group that Derby made in earlier decades--again inspired copying in Staffordshire clay. The theme was a popular one. You can read about it here in my January 2009 blog posting.
The Staffordshire group was a roaring success, and you can find it with varying bases and bocages. Some examples have a spill vase in lieu of a bocage. Every collector should have at least one!