From fine china to day wear, retailers like Crate & Barrel and Domestications sell serving wear for every occasion no matter how you want to set your table. But, owning more than one set of dishes can be expensive, not to mention space consuming. Save yourself cabinet space and big bucks by choosing one set of dishes that are not only friendly for day to day usage, but also look rich enough to dress up your table for holidays or fancy dinner parties. Here are a few ways to find that perfect platter.


For dishes that will be used daily, you'll want to ensure that the dishes are high quality and heavy. Certain dish companies like Corelle have guarantees about chip proof and shatterproof items. These details can make your dish set last long and avoid the appearance of wear from daily usage. You'll want to make sure the plates are made of quality porcelain or china to ensure longevity.


In the instance that a plate, bowl or cup is broken, it is important to replace that piece before your next dinner party. Unless you want to buy a complete new set, it will be important to choose a dish set that sells pieces a la carte. This way, when a clumsy child or dinner party guest drops a glass, it is quick and simple to replace the broken item. This will also be a more cost effective way to replace broken items. You should ask about your pattern to make sure it is a line the company plans to carry for a long time in order to assure future availability.

Classy Details

The devil is in the details when it comes to choosing versatile dinnerware. You'll want to choose something simple with a casual elegance in design so that it looks natural for casual dinners as well as fancy ones. Try a plain plate with a textured rim, or a solid color with a metal band around the edges. Try to avoid plates in loud colors with heavy patterns. While these are modern and fun for daily use, they often lack the elegance needed for fine dining.

How to Dress It Up

As mentioned above, opting for a simple pattern is an easy start to basic and versatile dishes. When you need to dress these dishes up for a dinner party, you can do this by adding crystal drinking glasses, fine silver silverware, and cloth napkins with napkin rings. Dressing the table nicely will draw attention away from the plates which may not be designed for fine dining exclusively. Another simple way to add sparkle or a flare of rich feeling to the table is to use metal or bold plate chargers. These items go beneath the plate to create a rich appearance.