Solving The Crockery Conundrum

By Admin on 26 June 2024
A well-chosen crockery set can make your dining table look stunning and create a memorable atmosphere for your family and guests. But with so many options available, how do you choose the best one for your home? In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about dinner set crockery.

Call them what you will – plates or dishes – dinnerware can be a focal point of your table. Before you start thinking of patterns and colors, it’s helpful to begin your search by focusing on the material you like. Common dinnerware materials include bone china, porcelain, earthenware, stoneware, and melamine. Each type of dinnerware has its benefits that can help you make your selection:

Bone China: Lightweight and elegant, bone china is a durable option for everyday and special occasion dinnerware because it resists chipping. It’s the strongest variety of china, and unlike fine china, it’s typically dishwasher- and microwave-safe.

Porcelain: This versatile material has a non-porous surface and excellent durability from high firing temperatures. These pieces are typically dishwasher-, microwave- and oven-safe. Watch out for porcelain dinnerware with metallic accents – these make microwaves a no-go.

Earthenware: Earthenware offers value, durability, and casual appeal. It’s one of the oldest industrial materials, giving your dinnerware substantial weight. It’s a good idea to avoid sudden temperature changes, high heat from the oven, or high settings on the microwave, to keep this dinnerware looking its best.

Stoneware: The special finishing glaze on stoneware dinnerware sets gives the material a smooth appearance and an impermeable finish that makes it family-friendly and ideal for everyday use. Stoneware is more durable than earthenware, but you’ll still want to keep it at even temperatures without exposure to high heat or freezing. Pieces with hand-painted designs may require hand washing.

Melamine: An entertainer’s dream, melamine dinnerware is shatterproof and break-resistant, which makes it ideal for outdoor use. Melamine dinnerware sets are typically dishwasher-safe but aren’t suitable for your oven or microwave.


Blending your style with your dinnerware is easy! These pieces come in a variety of designs ranging from casual to elegant and everything in between. Formal dinnerware sets are typically made from china or porcelain, while stoneware, earthenware, and melamine make great casual dinnerware. Choose durable dinnerware sets for everyday use, shatter-resistant options for kids and outdoor parties, and fine materials for upscale dinner parties and formal gatherings. You may want to have one set for everyday use and another for special occasions and holidays.

Beyond formal and casual design considerations, dinnerware sets can be further divided into four styles: solid, banded, patterned, and hand-painted. Colors and patterns are a great way to express your personality and complement your home’s decor. For the most versatile formal dinnerware, you might choose a neutral such as white or ivory. Selecting dinnerware with a border or rim detail can add color and personality while still showcasing the food itself. For casual dinner plates, make a splash with the colors and patterns that appeal to you: Be adventurous! If you’re shopping for longevity, consider going with options that are classic instead of trend-driven. Solid or banded white pieces are timeless, versatile choices that make a stylish base when you want to add more colorful accent pieces to your table, and they make food look great.


Once you have a good idea of what you want, it’s time to consider the different options. Should you buy a dinnerware set, place setting, or open stock? The answer depends on a variety of factors, including what your personal needs are. Consider the following:

1. Formal dinnerware is often sold in place settings, which include all the pieces that one person would need at the table. Ideal for individuals or couples building their collections, most place settings include five pieces: a dinner plate, salad or dessert plate, bread plate, teacup, and saucer. Some sets may include soup bowls.

2. Dinnerware sets include multiple place settings to take care of the whole table. The most common sets are 20-piece sets, which offer service for four people. They usually include a dinner plate, salad plate, teacup, and a saucer for each setting.

3. Open stock is dinnerware sold piece by piece. This is ideal for anyone who only needs a few pieces or someone who wants to mix and match within a collection.

Most experts recommend having eight to 12 five-piece place settings to ensure you have enough dinnerware for general use and entertaining. If you’re buying two sets – one for every day and another for formal use – you might choose four to six casual place settings and up to 12 formal place settings. It depends on the size of your family, the frequency of which you entertain, and the amount of space you have to store extras.

Another idea is to buy white dinnerware that works for formal and casual use, and then dress it up or down with accessories such as placemats, chargers, and linens. You can use accessories like napkins to add color and personality to an otherwise neutral table. Alternatively, these accessories can tone down boldly collared or patterned dinnerware.

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