Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Dinnerware Dilemma

I have this thing with dishes. In all my adult life, I have yet to find a set that I can live with for very long. I use dishes every day for meals, snacks and desserts. I love to cook! Why is it so hard for me to decide on a set of dishes? It didn't take me this long to decide on a husband, whether or not to have kids, which cat to adopt from the animal shelter or even which house to live in. I just don't get why this is so hard for me.

My first set of dishes when I was in art school were shiny black art deco. Very chic...for a while. Just after I got married, I moved onto slightly oversized earthy-colored stoneware. Then, I decided to go all white. I found a complete service for 12 at a thrift store and used them with abandon until about two years ago. Those too grew tiring so I bought a set of solid blue dishes from Target and thought that would be the end of it for a while. But I got sick of the oversized blue plates and recently resold them at my booth in the Greenwood. I now have three random antique dinner plates and four random dollar store luncheon plates AND guests coming into town over Thanksgiving. I refuse to buy paper plates because I don't want to promote or support that industry. I need to get serious about a new set of dinnerware.

I was talking with one of my best girlfriends about this the other day. She's been asking me the same question for 10 years, "Have you decided what color you want your kitchen to be yet?" Though I love her dearly, she's the kind of person that only colors inside the lines. I don't want my kitchen to be just one color. People ask me if I have a favorite color. Not really, just favorite shades of almost every color. So what to do? I feel like Elizabeth Taylor looking for the right husband when it comes to picking out dishes. But the game is afoot, with company coming in a few weeks I've got to find something that's both affordable and appealing. Hoping that I can also make a choice I can live for more than a season.

I think it's time for an intervention so I'm taking you with me. That's right, I want you to hold my hand and help me through this seemingly mundane, yet important life decision. I am accepting any and all suggestions for places to shop, specific patterns, etc. Please let me know why you do or do not like your dishes; what helped you decide which dishes to buy, etc. Feel free to ask me questions to walk me through this. Seriously I need some help here!


  1. My everyday dishes are all white. I rarely have dinner guests so I don't think about my dishes too much. I also have a small set, I think 5 plates, that are white with a silver trim from Eastern Europe that my mom picked up for me at a flea market. If I have guests I use those and if I need more than 5 plates then I intermix my everyday white ones. Do I have you completely horrified by now? he he
    I have an older lady friend of mine that has lots of vintage and antique dishes in all different colors and designs. When she throws a party everyone gets a different plate and glass. It's so much fun looking at all the different colors and shapes/designs on the table.

    Over the years we change so many things in our homes like paint color, furniture, textiles etc. so why not change our dishes too! Maybe you just need to accept that it is OK to buy new dishes every once in a while and then it will not be a dilemma. Happy shopping. :)

  2. LOVE this post! I too have problems with my dishes! I have an incredible set of Homer Laughlin China - the complete service for 12 that my mother found in a thrift store and gifted me with on my 40th birthday. These are just in the hutch and do not get used. They are from the 40s.

    I JUST handed over my Hull Brown Drip set that I died to collect and used for a few years, and then they just became too dark for me and did not have a large enough rim around the plate edge.

    I'm totally into the Mikasa Earthenware pottery now. AND, the hunt of finding the pieces. I actually have 2 sets of Mikasa that I can intermingle, and I think I'm set for a bit. These too sets, all from the Thrift Store! They were BRAND spanking new, or at least appeared that way to me and I didn't pay more than $12/for the complete sets!

    I'm sure they will lose their appeal after a while, but back to the thrift store I will go in search of another perfect set!

    I too - color outside the lines! =0)

  3. I'm new to this whole dishes thing. However, my husband actually picked out our dishes. I almost told him no, being shocked thinking they were too "girly"...however I LOVE these dishes. Honestly, I've always had a thing for square plates. It just makes eatting more fun to be a little different and have plates that aren't round.

    We bought these dishes from Bed Bath and Beyond. There isn't a single thing I don't like about them. They are holding up well, plus they make everything you cook look better. With the swirly design, it makes presentation easy and you now how into presentation I am!

    Check them out:

    I'm really happy with them! :) I hope you find the perfect dishes for you!

  4. oh leslie! you are too funny! we'd go shopping with you anywhere!
    karrie has our grandmother's blue onion patterned dishes & she mixes and matches them with white ironstone that she finds here and there....along with some glass dishes in clear & blue - again - from anywhere we find it!
    I have a great pattern of dishes by dansk that I thought I loved when we got married 14 years ago....I have grown out of love, but I am holding on to them, because they have royal blue, teals & reds in them, so I'm planning on finding other dishes to mix & match with it...that's the plan at least! (right now my dining room is gold & black, and they soooo don't go - but perhaps they will when I redo the kitchen - there is always hope!)
    guess the hard part about being a creative person is that color decision - we know there is so much more that one color, one design, etc!
    best of luck!


Blog Widget by LinkWithin