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Adding to our vintage crockery collection with a charity shop bargain

Posted by on Monday 11 June 2012 in charity shopping | 5 comments

We had a good charity shop score on Saturday – 4 little plates and two bowls for £1, all in perfect condition, from one of the charity shops in Shipley (which is the place to charity shop these days – all the cool kids are doing it).

Not only is that a pretty decent bargain by itself, it’s an especially good score as it’s in the classic 1970s Bacchus by Kilncraft design – which is “our” vintage pattern.

It was one of those everywhere patterns in the late 1970s-early 1980s and my mum & dad had a set – I remember it vividly from my early childhood, especially as it regularly turned up as props on TV shows back then (which, as a small child, is enough to make you feel special by association).

Here is a picture of me at about 18 months, Christmas 1980, with one of the Bacchus dishes on the table in front of me (bottom right corner):

We stole acquired what remained of my mum & dad’s set a few years ago (including that dish from the picture) and have slowly been adding to it with charity shop finds over the last few years. A milk jug here, a couple of bowls there. A couple of years ago, we found the remains of another family’s set in a charity shop in Armley – dinner plates, side plates and cups – on a white background instead of the mustard, but that was close enough for us (and they’re the ones I tend to use when taking food pictures). And we get items from other sources too, for example, just a few months ago, John’s mum found a few more not-quite-dinner plates at her mum’s house so we’ve added them to our pile.

I’m not very much into collecting things because special collected items tend to end up as unused Sunday best but they are very much in everyday use here so it’s fun to find these items as we go about our travels – especially when they’re cheap or free. Coffee cups and individual dinner plates often pop up on eBay for £5+p&p or so but that misses the point for me — the hunt or rather the stumbling-upon is half the pleasure. The other half of the pleasure is, of course, still using perfectly good crockery that is as old as me and will probably still be usable in another 30 years time :)

Do you have anything in particular that you collect or look out for in your charity/thrift/op shop adventures?


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  1. Lynsey aka Swirlyarts

    That is a bargain and the bowls are lovely! And Shipley is a right treasure trove isn’t it. I will have to make excuses to go back!

  2. Sooz

    Ooooo they’re lovely! excellent bargains! I always look out for vintage fabrics when I’m charity shopping, at least I can pretend they’re useful…I love vintage crockery but I ban myself from buying it as it has to live in the garage waiting for me to have my own house!

  3. Kathleen

    I’m glad that you don’t let your collection sitting around waiting for Sunday best. We have a similar philosphy about old china. It doesn’t do anyone good sitting in the cabinet. Our everyday dishes are from the 1930s. My husband grew up using them everyday, and his mom passed them on to us. We also have a set of handpainted Japanese china from the 1930s that we inherited. We take that out whenever we have guests over. Sometimes people get nervous (you can see your hand through the demitasse cups), but we tell them that it’s all better off getting broken while being used than sitting in a cabinet somewhere, unseen.

  4. Dana

    So nice that you use the dishes that bring you joy. I’m collecting Candyland game pieces to decorate a Christmas tree, but so many games get tossed instead of sold/donated…here’s to a challenge! =)

  5. Rachel

    Love it. I collect the very same crockery and use as much of it as I can, although the the coffee and tea set have been stored. Most of it came from my grandma but I have collected more pieces since from charity shops and proper ebay bargains. I was absolutely distraught when I dropped and broke the lid from my casserole dish :( happy collecting, maybe we will be fighting over a piece in a chari shop one day :)

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