In 1745, the French had established a factory at Vincennes with a 20-year monopoly on the production of porcelain in the style of Meissen. In 1748, the technique for gilding porcelain was discovered and, from 1749, gilding. In 1752, an underglaze blue, called “bleu lapis”, was introduced. From that time, the use of dark blue ground and gilding became characteristic of the more expensive wares produced by the factory. (In 1763 bleu lapis was replaced by and overglaze “bleu nouveau” which is less cloudy.)
In 1756, the factory was moved to Sevres. At the same time the emphasis shifted to exuberant, swirling rococo forms.
When the Seven Years War brought about the closure of Meissen, Sevres became the leading porcelain centre in Europe.
Sevres initially produced works in a swirling rococo style but, by the 1770s, changed to a more sober neo-classical style. Decoration was ornate with much use of gilding.