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Beautiful Crockery on a Budget

I made a mistake about 10 years ago, when I decided it was about time I had a full matching dinner service for entertaining. The children were grown so there was little chance of it getting damaged and I would be more likely to have people round for meals

As it has turned out, I think I have used it twice since I bought it. Not that I haven't used any of it at all, but not as a full set. What a waste of money! I didn't even buy a set that I particularly liked, but one that I could afford. It's not an ugly set, but not particularly beautiful either. Now I am stuck with it and some is now missing.

Now that is the main problem, if you don't have a lot of money. If parts get broken, they usually can't be replaced to match exactly. Then it looks a bit naff if one person has the odd plate or cup. Do you buy a whole new set? And what if you have a set for six people and you have seven at the table?

So about 6 months ago, I decided that instead of having a nearly whole matching set, it would be better if every item didn't match at all. So I have starting on a quest to collect a totally eclectic dining set from second hand sales and charity shops and occasionally brand new. This way it won't matter if a piece gets broken because it can be replaced with something totally different

There are rules to this that I have made for myself so that I don't end up with just a pile of junk.

Don't buy a piece unless:

  • You regard it as beautiful, cute, pretty or elegant.

  • You will use it

  • You don't mind if it gets broken

  • You know it will be an absolute pleasure to use

  • It feels good to hold

  • It makes you feel special eating/drinking with it

Every piece should make the user say "oh, isn't this lovely" when you place it in front of them. Hopefully in a year's time, I will have the most unique and delightful eating set in the world, and all for very little money


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January 22, 20172 found this helpful
Top Comment

I did this 5 years ago and will keep doing it for as long as I cook for myself. Love it!!

http://www.thri  4595334.tip.html

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January 23, 20172 found this helpful

A beautiful set! x

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January 15, 20171 found this helpful

Great idea!

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January 15, 20171 found this helpful

For events at our church...guild luncheons etc. we use a variety of place settings, mix and match cups and saucers and salad and desert plates...festive and fun.


Recently our library had a luncheon..and they used a variety of mismatched pretty and bright...I like to do it at home when lots of people come over ...planned to not match.

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January 15, 20171 found this helpful

Great idea I now live alone except the dog and I. I done the same thing buying a matching set however I did like the set. It chipped though with every day use or a piece got broken then the set was never the same. I'm going to try this. Thanks

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January 16, 20171 found this helpful

I have always used mismatched crockery because I loved how they looked. I have some from my sister and some from my mother and lots from the local flea market. I was amazed to see Martha Stewart using mismatched items at a fancy dinner, so I felt vindicated. I have a 12 pc Val Dor dinnerware by Royal Albert that was used when I got married, but I never use it.


Every time I did my husband managed to break something. Replacing a plate sets you back nearly $100.00 per. Same with my good crystal. I use glass and just look at my fine china and crystal in the china cabinet. I can't afford to keep up with his breakage or his putting gold rimmed bowls in the microwave!

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