Tuesday, June 9, 2009

New old dishes - Arrowstone

My mom sent me a set of dishes she picked up at Goodwill. They are white with band of black and charcoal, the same colors as my entire apartment and wardrobe, and they are solid. You could probably knock a person out just with a dessert plate.

One of the things I love about this stoneware is that it was made by Arrowstone, a Japanese company that gave each set decidedly American names like Navajo Blue, Apache Gold, and my set, Black Foot. EBay sellers call the line "vintage " which could mean anything. (I probably qualify as 'vintage' myself.)

At any rate, the arrival of my retro set means retiring my current set of dishes, which are froufy with blue and pink flowers - completely not my style. However, I've had these dishes as long as I've been on my own, longer than I've had Mr. Bromeliad. It's hard to break up with a set of dishes, even when the coffee cups are so dainty that nobody will touch them, let alone drink from them. Fancy dishes lend a certain elan to the dumpiest of meals.

But I don't have space for two sets, so one must go.

How about you? Are your dishes minimalist or fancy? Do you have more than one set? Are you emotionally attached to your plates?


  1. I LOVE your new set. Love love.

    My dishes are coupe white porcelain. Years ago, I was a Pier 1 Imports store manager and at Christmas, the company would give us gift certificates as a holiday bonus. I remember buying the white porcelain because I could get a set of 6 using only the gift certificates, without spending any of my own money. I didn't really want white. I thought it was boring and simply did it because I needed dishes badly. Turned out to be one of my great joys. I adore my white dishes and though they are now chipped and I've lost several and they probably need replacing, I know with certainty that when I do, I will replace them with another (possibly nicer) set of pristine white dishes. I love the way they look, stacked in my dish cabinet. I love their simplicity and the way food looks on them. I love that I can add to them inexpensively and endlessly and still maintain continuity. I love that I can add a little set of frivolous salad plates to the mix, if I really feel like I need some color. I adore them. They are my only set. I have nothing fancier because budget has never allowed and honestly, I don't know what I would do with them if I had them.

    That said, I wouldn't turn down those nice Arrowstone dishes, no how no way.

  2. What a great set!

    Like everything else in my house, I tend to like a little bit of everything so our china is a bit on the frou frou side whereas our everyday is contemporary. I also have a more rustic set that I usually like to use outdoors in the summer. And I see new ones all the time that I'd love but have absolutely no room for. That's probably a good thing(!)

  3. LOL... I buy my dishes a couple at a time... whenever I see one that I like. None of them match, so, in a way, that makes them all match. I admire your ability to get rid of things you don't need, though!

  4. Red Shoes, what an awesome story. I love that you got your dishes with gift certificates and still love them every day. That's not a dish set, that's a relationship.

    Alek, welcome back from your trip. I guess we kind of had an everyday set, too. (A set of two black and white dishes, ironically.)Somehow swinging from china to contemporary to rustic makes perfect sense.

    Karen, how cool to have completely mismatched plates. Somewhat unrelated, but have you ever seen this table made from vintage plates? http://ninasapartment.blogspot.com/2009/03/table-made-of-vintage-plates.html

  5. I love dishes and the countless ways to set a table. I chose a set from Crate and Barrel a couple of years ago that is quite plain and completely versatile. It's called Margo and is french vanilla in color. I have a variety of chargers and linens to spice them up and change the look. They are an everyday set but can easily be made into a more elegant set with a charger and fancy table dressings. I have enough to serve 16 even though the table only seats 10 comfortably. I also have a set of china that belonged to my mother. She had two sets and was willing to part with one when I got married. It is a white plate with silver edge and a beautiful gray rose in the center. The occasion to use them is generally a special one. Oh and I also have an entire Japanese style set from World Market purchased on a whim with my sister when she wanted to do a sushi party. So, yes, plates are wonderful things and thankfully I have a basement to store the excess....much to my husband's chagrin. Oh, and I have at least three sets of flatware to go along for the ride. It's a tad ridiculous!

  6. OK, folks, if you're planning a sushi party, be sure to call Steph.

  7. Hi, there...please don't get rid of your froufy dishes! Turn one of the cups into a planter and put a succulent in it. That way you can still have one around for nostalgic sake and succulents are super low maintenance.

    Here's an example of what I'm talking about:

    Enjoy, Mary Grace

  8. ok, if you EVER, EVER, EVER want to get rid of the Arrowstone dishes, I'd buy them from you! I also have these dishes but they were given to me by my Grandmother (now deceased), and they were given to her by my uncle when he was stationed overseas. You can find these on ebay in every pattern EXCEPT this one on a regular basis. I'm desperate for more dinner plates. I have 8, but 4 are cracked through the center and could go at any time. And we are a family of 5. Yeah, not good odds we'll still be eating on them in a year unless I can find more. Alas, I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

  9. Hi Tjarehill. Send me some contact info at bromeliadliving@gmail.com just in case.

  10. I have the Navajo Blue set. I acquired 4 dinner plates and 4 salad plates from an ARC store in Fort Collins back in grad school. I loved them and just recently found service for 8 on craigslist. What a find. I love 'em. And the dishes I ditched (well, sold for $300) for service for 8.- My wedding gift Mikasa Inner Peace pattern that's no more than 4 years old. It just wasn't me. Too Zen-ish. So, I too am going VINTAGE. Love the robin egg blue color and YES, they are VERY heavy and can't go in the microwave. LOVE IT!

  11. Just wondering if you have used these in the dishwasher or microwave? I just inherited a set of the the Navajo Blue pattern and absolutely love them but before I start using them would like to know if they are dishwasher and or microwave safe. Thanks a ton.

  12. I don't have a dishwasher, but I have used them in the microwave and they've seemed OK. To be honest, I didn't even think about it. At least I hope they are OK.