Can’t figure out how to select your dinnerware? Confused about how to pick the right material and style?
We get you.
In this post, we are going to go over some basic tips and guidelines that can help you make a better choice the next time you want to buy some dinnerware.
How to Select Your Dinnerware? 3 Things to Keep in Mind
When choosing your dinnerware, there are basically three main things that you have to keep in mind. Let’s look at them one-by-one in detail.
The material is the most important factor that you have to consider when buying dinnerware.
There are some materials like melamine, which are tough and hardy, and can bear some rough usage.
On the other hand, we have materials like china and glass, which look good but come with the downside of being dainty and fragile. Color is also very important besides material. If you love a unique and uniform design you should consider solid color tableware.
To educate you better on how to select your dinnerware, let’s briefly discuss some common dinnerware materials and their salient properties.
Melamine is known for its durability and toughness. It does not break easily, and it can take a lot of hits before giving out. Melamine is also easy to wash, and it is relatively affordable as compared to other materials like porcelain or china.
Melamine dinnerware is the ideal choice for parents with small kids.
If glass or porcelain dinnerware happens to be present in a house full of toddlers and 4 – 6-year-old children, it’s not going to stay there for long. It’s all going to break and shatter pretty quickly.
Moving on, we have porcelain.
As compared to melamine, porcelain is relatively weaker. But it won’t be fair to talk about it as if it is going to shatter if you merely put it down hard or bump it somewhere.
It’s just somewhat easier to chip, and it will break (in most cases) if dropped from more than 1 ft. above the ground.
However, porcelain dinnerware can be a great choice to buy because of 1) the looks, 2) the smooth and easy-to-clean finishing, and 3) because it has good heat and cold-resistant properties, which makes it oven-and freezer-safe.
Stoneware is similar to porcelain because both of them share the same manufacturing and treatment process i.e., firing and glazing.
However, stoneware dinnerware is somewhat different than porcelain with regard to the look and structure. Stoneware dinnerware is usually made thick, bulky, and heavy whereas porcelain dinnerware is more on the finer side.
Stoneware is tough and durable, and it won't as easily break like glass or porcelain. However, it is not good for high and extreme temperatures. You should only use them for normal meal-serving rather than in the oven or freezer.
There are a lot of other dinnerware materials as well but these three are some of the most common.
When picking the material for your dinnerware, you should think and consider the use that they are going to be put to. Are you looking to buy some for casual home use, and are you looking to buy some for use on special occasions i.e., for guests?
For the former case, it will be better to buy stuff like melamine since it is durable and it can handle rough home use.
For the latter case, however, it will be better to go a little fancy and buy earthenware or porcelain dinnerware. These types of materials are easier to break, but they generally come with elegant designs and appearances; which makes them ideal for using on special occasions.
So, the first step of how to select your dinnerware? Understand and consider the purpose for which you need it, and the use you’re going to put it through. Thereafter, choose the material that fits your need the best.
2. Number of Items
Once you are all done and decided on the material, the next thing you need to think about is the number of items and utensils that you need.
For sole bachelors and small families, buying 4-piece dinner sets can be a good idea whereas larger households may need to buy 8 or 12-piece sets.
Dinner sets usually come with a different assortment of tableware and elegant flatware. For example, an 8-piece dinner set will come with 8 dinner plates, bowls, spoons, serving plates, and so on. However, things like the large serving bowls and pots will be limited to just 1 or 2.
When choosing a dinner set, it is advisable to go a little over the actual number of people that will be using it. For example, a person living alone can make do with just a single plate, bowl, spoon, etc., but it will be more suitable for such as person to buy a 4-piece set instead.
3. Variety of Included Items
And wrapping up our guide to how to select your dinnerware, we have the variety of included items.
There are basically two ways in which you can buy dinnerware. You can either buy a full set or you can buy individual items according to a specific need and requirement.
Some dinner sets come with only the necessary utensils and tableware such as serving plates, dinner plates, dessert bowls, soup bowls, spoons, forks, etc. Some sets, on the other hand, can go a bit beyond the basic stuff, and also come with other various types of pots and tureens, etc.
So, before buying dinnerware, you should first decide on the specific items and utensils that you need.
And there you have it.
If you are a bit confused about how to select your dinnerware, don’t worry. All you need to do is look at the different available materials and select the one that suits your need the best. Some common materials like porcelain and melamine were discussed in the above post.
Thereafter, you should consider the number as well as the variety of items and utensils that you need to buy. Once that's all done, you can go ahead and pick a dinnerware set/collection that fits your requirement.