This service represents an early foray by Elkington and Co. into the production of enameled work. Elkington and Co. exhibited a thirteen-piece dessert service in the "Pompeian" or "Graeco-Pompeian" taste at the 1862 International Exhibition in London. J.B. Waring's monumental Masterpieces of Industrial Art and Sculpture at the International Exhibition 1862 described this service as "remarkable for unusual elegance of taste in design, a judicious combination of colored enamels with silver, and a degree of artistic finish which are not too often found even in the best works of this class."
The service was designed by W. Albert Willms, who served as head of Elkington's design studio from 1855 until his death in 1899. Willms was awarded a medal for the artistic merit at the 1862 Exhibition. The Report of the Juries referred to the dessert service specifically, stating that "the effect is very beautiful" and "in excellent taste" (International Exhibition, 1862. Reports by the Juries on the Subjects in the Thirty-six Classes into which the Exhibition was Divided, London: William Clowes and Sons, 1863, Class XXXIII, 2, 4.)