Dishes as a travel journal


Instead of having a matching set of “wedding china” I always thought it would be pretty cool to create an eclectic collection of handmade pottery from our travels and add it to a beautiful collection with an insane story…”Oh yes, this Wasabi dish was a special gift from the Buddhist monks I prayed with in Osaka…yes, that coffee mug was actually handmade by this lovely little Turkish fellow” etc. etc.  You would never order a “set of jewelry” to wear for the rest of your life, so why would you be content to have one set of fine china?  No, no – pottery is an art form, each piece is a piece of art that tells a story.  Some day when I’m old and gray, I will throw a dinner party served on the most exquisite hand-crafted dish-ware with an even better story – the story of our family’s journey around the world.

The dishes have to be hand-made, rough around the edges, asymmetrical by fault.  The glaze is really important, slight imperfections only add to the allure. A great place to find inexpensive yet beautiful pottery is at a local college art sale.


This serving dish came from a Zero Minus Plus @ Fred Segal sale in Santa Monica (home!).  I paid $40. The glaze is exquisite. Click to see it up close.


Bought these sake glasses at a little cave of a store at the Nishiki Market in Kyoto.


This mug came from a Jusco Store in Okinawa, Japan.


Nishiki Market in Kyoto – the glaze is this really cool crystalline matte turquoise, not quite shiny.

Here are a few on my wish list…


[via VivaTerra]


[via Etsy]


[via Coco Blu Home]


[from Right Bank]


[via Etsy]


[via Etsy]


[via decorology]


[via Etsy]


[via Etsy]


[via Etsy]


[via Etsy]


[via Etsy]


[via Etsy]

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4 Responses to Dishes as a travel journal

  1. Luphia says:

    there is something about the simple white “i love you” plates that is so beautiful!

    ps, i think the light art could be fairy lights wrapped on a small dry branch? i agree it looks so amazing! 🙂

  2. I love dishes too. I plan parties just to set a new table. My favorite place to shop is Goodwill. I chose a color or theme and shop for soup bowls or salad plates or napkins in a new color. If I don’t think I will use them again or have room in a cupboard for storage, I donate them back! Everyone wins.

  3. thecreme says:

    That is a brillie idea, Merri. I have a funny story about Goodwills – out here in Japan, the “Goodwills” are actually computer stores, which I found out when I went shopping there on Halloween last year. Perhaps when I get back to the states….

  4. I am so with you on this – souvenir and art with a practical use. I actually started bringing home handmade ceramic pieces from my travels a long time ago but they were usually larger, serving pieces which are just about the hardest things to transport. I should have gone for smaller pieces like you’re talking about.

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