Thursday, 4 February 2010

Gather ye Rosebuds

I have always wanted a formal dinner service. We didn't register for one when we got married as I figured that it would very much be a present for me, rather than a present for us. For the same reason, I have never been able to say to my husband, "Come, let us part with hundreds of pounds for something that you have no interest in!". However, the yearning for a fine china service remained. I decided recently that I could choose a china pattern and gradually build up a service over many years. I could buy the odd piece and perhaps family could buy me the odd tea cup or plate for birthday and Christmas gifts (hint, hint, Mark!). I figure that by the time the children have left home, I might have acquired a complete 8 piece service. By then, I might actually be able to use fine china safely! I'm planning ahead with an 8 piece service. I figure there are five of us, so the Podlings' future spouses will make eight. Of course, if I have another baby I'll make it a ten-piece. Having children is expensive!
Anyway, this preamble leads in to the information that I have chosen a china pattern and have bought my first piece. It didn't take me long to discover and fall in love with 'Old Country Roses' by Royal Albert. Everything about this pattern screams 'Paula', from the Montrose shaping, to the scalloped edges finished in 22ct gold, to the blush rose motif. My favourite flower in my three favourites colours. If someone had set out to design a dinner service just for me, 'Old Country Roses' would be it. I am in love!

I'm an old fashioned girl. My outlook, values and taste all run to the traditional and I'm not ashamed of it! My mum has always said I was born thirty and I maintain that I have been ageing ever since (for those keeping count, that would make me 62!). I am also, and have always been, unashamedly 'girly' (let's call it sounds more grown-up). My mum sometimes refered to me as her Edwardian Lady. I prefer skirts and dresses to jeans and love anything with a floral design! I tell you this to give you some idea of why Old Country Roses appeals to me.
The downside to this particular service is the price. I kid you not, a new dinner plate in this pattern will set you back £17! On the plus side, this pattern has been around since 1962 so eBay is awash with Old Country Roses treasures at much lower prices. However, I learned a lesson with my first piece, having picked up a milk jug for the exciting price of £3.99, I unwrapped it to discover it was a second. Caveat Emptor! I'll know to be more careful next time. At least I won't mind using this jug until I replace it with one of first quality.

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