While out one Sunday looking for yard sale treasures we stopped at an estate sale in the country. It was late in the afternoon and things had been picked over pretty good, but Sundays are also when people are ready to make deals.
In this case I was looking at a big box of china when the person running the sale came up and offered a lower price than what was posted on the box. The price was good but we were not really interested in buying another set of china since we already had two sets at home. I said thanks but told them we would have to pass. We looked around a little more and were about to go when we were offered the china set for $60. We decided to take a closer look at the china. It had 12 complete seven-piece place settings, four large serving plates, as well as a covered sugar bowl and creamer. A total of 90 individual pieces for just $60 and the set had a simple pine pattern design which was easy to like. We were told the set had been a wedding gift in the early 50’s but the marriage ended quickly and the china wound up in the attic for the next 50 or so years. We paid the $60 loaded it in the car and headed home.
Once at home, I found the maker was Narumi of Japan. They have been making fine china since 1911 and continue to do so today. The pattern, Madera Pine, was discontinued but replacements are available from Replacements, Ltd. The set has a few chips but overall it’s in fantastic condition. We looked at selling the set for a profit but instead decided to keep and use it for special occasions.
There is absolutely no reason not to use china like this. While it can be a little delicate for everyday use it’s great for special occasions. A word of caution though; when it comes to vintage china, I strongly recommend hand washing only. Our china has hand painted silver trim and the harsh chemicals in dishwasher detergent can damage it. Also remember to never put any dishes with metallic trim in a microwave, it will damage the dish and possibly the oven too.