After a couple of very challenging weeks focused on your wardrobe, let’s get back into the kitchen and deal with the piles of crockery, serving dishes and platters.
I do love to throw a good spread for family and friends and I love to present things nicely but found that I had accumulated many mismatched items over the years, especially in terms of serving dishes and platters and I do like things to go together where possible.
I also used to be one of these people who had a dinner set aside for “special occasions” as did my mum, and her mum. So what would classify as a “special occasion”? Usually a birthday, Christmas or Easter. So that meant that it was taking up space and collecting dust for the other 340+ days per year.
So how do we decide what stays and what goes?
Revisit the criteria you created during Week 1 of our challenge to assist you in making decisions about your crockery, platters and serving dishes and give yourself a limit.
Consider your lifestyle and ask yourself the following questions:
- How often do you host groups of people? How many people?
- Do you regularly eat family style? (ie place platters/dishes on the table for people to serve themselves)
- When was the last time I used these items?
- How frequently are they all used? Yes, each individual one.
If you have an item of sentimental value, consider this. You don’t need to keep all items in a set to retain the memory. It may be sufficient for you to keep one treasured piece as representative of the full set, or even take a photo of it.
What do I do with the keepers?
They definitely all need homes, and ones that minimise the chance for damage and enable them to be accessed easily when they are needed.
To facilitate this, you could install additional shelves, either fixed or stand-alone inserts (like this one from Ikea, or this one from Kmart). If you want to go with additional shelves, you can take your measurements to your local hardware store and many will cut them to size for you. If you aren’t confident with the measuring tape, just take one of the existing shelves with you and they can use it as a template.
For items of a sentimental nature that you don’t wish to use regularly, find a spot on a shelf or in a display cabinet, or depending upon what the item is you may be able to frame it.
What do I do with the ones that no longer have a purpose for me?
- Sell or Swap:
o Swap with your friends or family.
o Facebook Marketplace
o Garage Sale
- Donate options:
o Green Shed (Mitchell or Mugga Lane)
o Let’s Recycle Canberra (Hume)
o Your local community organisation or church – they may like some for community morning teas and events
If they have chips or cracks, they need to go as they are no longer foodsafe. You might be able to offer them to a community or school craft group or online for use in mosaics.
Some suggestions for future purchases
Before you fall in love with that new platter and hand over your hard earned cash, ask yourself if there is a home for it in your house. If not, and you can’t see your life without it, use the one-in-one-out rule and let something go to create space for this new piece whilst also maintaining your established limits for this category. If you are being honest with yourself and you just can’t fit it, great – save your money!
I have implemented a new rule for myself that helps me to maintain a reasonable level of these items whilst also satisfying my personal preference to have matching items. I just buy white. Yes, white crockery, white platters etc. That way, individual pieces can generally be easily replaced and even with some variation in shades of white and shapes, they all coordinate well on a table and work for casual or more formal events (not that I have many of those). I also think that I can dress things up with “accessories” which adds that splash of colour that I love.
How did you go? Feel free to share your successes, challenges and tips on our Facebook page.