The story of French porcelain begins in 1768 when a woman from the village of Saint-Yrieix La Perche near Limoges discovers a soft, white clay that she uses to bleach her household linens. Experts would identify this substance as kaolin: the crucial, long sought after ingredient that is responsible for the resiliency, durability and flawless iridescent translucency of fine porcelain. The search for this “secret ingredient” had lasted four centuries since Marco Polo’s discovery of Chinese porcelain. The discovery of kaolin in France marked the birth of industrial and cultural significance of Limoges porcelain. Léonard Bernardaud began working in one of the first French porcelain workships, and distinguished himself amongst other workers, becoming partner and then sole owner in 1900. Leadership of the company has remained in the Bernardaud family, where it is currently in its fifth generation of family ownership by Michel Bernardaud. Bernardaud perpetuates and diversifies traditional skills and techniques in the fabrication of porcelain and thus preserves a valuable component of the cultural heritage of France. The company continually reinvents the art, craftsmanship and fabrication of porcelain. Because of the traditionally made nature of Bernardaud dinnerware, delivery times may take up to 4-6 weeks. The products shown below are only a selection of currently available products. Please call 1-800-747-9288 to speak with our sales staff about current availability or to inquire about additional products.