Suzanne Lovell Inc


Hand-painted ceramics are a family affair at Laboratorio Paravicini

March 19, 2020

Six different snakes are hand-painted onto red glazed porcelain, other snakes are on white porcelain. The plates feature a hand-painted gold rim.
Image courtesy of: Les Ateliers Courbet

For over twenty years, hand-painted decorations have livened up the beautiful tablescapes of Milan thanks to Laboratorio Paravicini. The owner, Costanza Paravicini, along with her two daughters, Benedetta and Margheria work together to freshen traditional plates and add a whimsical design that is one-of-a-kind.

Inside the Milanese studio that sits in a beautiful courtyard within the city.
Image courtesy of: Laboratorio Paravinici

Each year, Laboratorio Paravicini introduces a new annual collection which quickly becomes insanely popular and sold at a few select e-tailers. Some past collections include botanicals, zodiac signs, and Chinoiserie. The company also loves taking on custom projects that proceed through commission via the made-to-measure program. The ladies have been known to beautifully adapt family crests, textile patterns, and monograms onto their signature dishes.

Initially, the company took inspirations solely from the most known Italian pottery; but as the world has gotten bigger, so have the adaptations within the “laboratory”. New shapes along with new designs make this the place for those looking for a product that checks all the boxes!

The adorable studio.
Image courtesy of: Laboratorio Paravicini

In the early 1990’s, Costanza Paravinici wanted to create plates and tablewares that resembled ones that were used in “olden times”… handmade but still suitable for everyday use. Realizing that today’s needs differ from the needs of people from the 1800’s, Paravinici used a decorative technique called Gran Fuoso sulla Terraglia Bianca. Through this process, white ceramics are glost-fired; in other words, underglaze decorations are bright, indelible, and non-toxic. Thus, the hand-painted designs become quite sturdy and suitable for everyday use… including the dishwasher!

The Hot Air Balloon Collection.
Image courtesy of: Laboratorio Paravicini

The ladies at the studio help customers find a dining set that mimics their imagination by showing them many sketches and samples. Everything is tailor-made and in such, it perfectly reflects the customers’ personalities. With a variety of different plates that can be moulded or smooth, and servicing pieces that complete the sets, it is entirely possible to have remarkable dishes that are as much works-of-art as they are functional dishware.

Costanza says, “People want to have something personal. They want something envisaged by an artisan but at the same time reflects their taste.”
Costanza Paravinici sketching at her studio.
Image courtesy of: La Casa in Ordine

The team at Laboratorio Paravicini is quite small… but they are mighty. It is Costanza and her daughter Benedetta that use a steady hand to paint or stencil the nostalgic motifs. Admitting that painting directly on the biscuit is quite difficult, they stress that it is a technique employed by only a few. Whether a client is looking for a traditional motif such as a family crest, or a familiar subject such as circus performers, or a modern motif with ikats… the team at Laboratorio Paravicini can do it all!