[ Building the China Closet ]
Building the China Closet is similar to building a fashion wardrobe. The basic essentials are your place setting, specifically your dinner plate, flatware, glassware and linens.
My china closet is built with 3 solids, white, green and pink. Yes, pink! White is my first choice. Its easy to find flea market salad plates to enhance the green background.
Tip: When adding plates, look for plates with the same consistency.
Dinner plates - based on your dinning space start with a minimum of 6 dinner plates. As your space and entertaining grows, continue to add in even numbers. Bridal consultants usually suggest starting with service for 8.
Color: Solid or Pattern. A solid will take you through many glorious entertaining events. A neutral color, white, cream, green, or gray will enable you to add fun pieces as you build your closet.
Salad Plates: Think of these as your accessories. They can be traditional, costal, retro. All can add a pop of color and fun to the table.
Color: Select a theme. The number of plates depends on you entertaining space. If you are just starting your china closet, your style will change over time. You can always add more plates based on color themes and mixing patterns.
[ The Flatware ]
Select flatware that you intend to use, and your budget. Starting at the top is sterling silver, followed by silver plate that is available in gold like finish, stainless steel and plastic picnic ware.
After you select your dinnerware, flatware in the next additon. Place you plate on a neutral surface and set the fork, knife and spoon next to the plate. Does it compliment the plate? Also, hold the fork and see how it feels. Is it too heavy, too light, or perfect for you!
[ The Glassware ]
Glassware requirements depend on beverage preferences. Water, soda, juice, wine or alcohol. You can delineate between everyday and entertainment beverages. Star with an 8 ounce tumble for everday and can also be used for entertainment. If you enjoy wine, then select an all purpose goblet. I started with antique water goblets that can be used when entertaining and can also hold wine. You can also mix and match your glassware. One note on juice or 4 ounce glasses, when have you seen an adult drink just 4 ounces of juice?
Table linens are used to protect your table or set the mood of your table. Compare it to your clothing wardrobe, If it's raining or cold outside do you wear something over your outfit?
A full tablecloth or 2, table runner, placemat or chargers are all options. Depending on what is being served, and the mood of the event, I rotate from a fine all white cloth to paper placemats.