Pictures of your mismatched china please :)

posted 3 years ago in Decor
Post # 2
3920 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

keevolpi:  Do you mean for the actual wedding or in the home?

Post # 4
3920 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

So here’s my little novel with some pictures at the end:

Well, I started collecting china about a year ago, maybe? I think I had seen the idea on the Bee or something, but I began to see vintage china everywhere I went. I go thrifting a lot and am always on the hunt for really fun and pretty items. I have also been obsessed with the idea of having all mismatched plates in my home, so I started collecting a plate here, a plate there with the intent of using them in our home afterwards. 

I got 90% of mine at thrift stores. I live around the corner from both a Goodwill and a Salvation Army, so I go in twice a month to check out their inventory. (I also have a friend who works at Goodwill and she’ll text me if they have some pretty dishes come in!) Early on, FI and I set a budget. I knew this was going to cost us far, far more than simply renting white china, but I’ve been starting the process of opening a vintage rental company, so I figured it was investing. (And if the rental company fell through I could always store them–hey, it’s money already spent and gone–for later parties or to leave to my daughters/granddaughters, or I could sell them.)

I found that buying them off of eBay was way, way, WAY too expensive. Even if you could get them at a decent price, it was at LEAST $10 for shipping and handling. I think I bought a total of eight dishes for probably around a $100 and decided to just stick to the thrift stores. I started early enough so I can take my time. 

Right now our budget stands as such:

  • $3 or less for dinner plate
  • $1 or less for salad/bread and butter plate
  • $2 or less for tea cups w/saucers
  • $1 or less for tea cups or saucers on their own

Basically, my goal was to spend under $1000 on everything. Both Goodwill and Salvation Army have sales frequently enough that I can get most of these items for 50% off. Also, because I go in so often, I’m able to haggle with them if the plates have been there for longer than a month. Also, buying a set is usually more expensive than if the plates are priced seperately, simply because I am not interested in the sugar bowls, creamers, candle sticks, mini bowls, etc. that come with everything. I’m really not even interested in the tea cups and saucers (I’ve been collecting those at random–they seem much harder to find!!!). Also, if they’re priced together it seems like it’s always for the name brand of the plates (which I am also not interested in.) A couple of Craigslist ads got me several responses, but not anything I was interested in.

I don’t have a definite number for my guest list just yet, so it’s okay to keep collecting, but once I hit the 90 mark, I’ll pull back for a few months. We ideally want to keep it under 100, but won’t know for sure until we send out the save the dates and get some feedback. We have 140 invited guests as of now. What I’m going to do, though, is once I get some feedback from the save the dates, keep purchasing until I reach my final number, because I plan on having some extras in case any of them break before or during the wedding, someone needs an extra for whatever reason, and I plan on making cake stands out of the leftover plates. 

So, I profously apologize for my novel above (holy shit, shut up, MrsMeowton). Here are the pics:

I apologize for the grainy cell phone shots. We are doing dinner, salad, and dessert plates. 

Post # 6
3920 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

keevolpi:  I’m also getting married October 2015!!! My biggest problem is understanding that I still have plenty of time and not feeling obligated to purchase dishes that I only *kind of* like. I did that at first, bought loads of ugly dishes, and then once I started really hunting and finds the kind of style I wanted, I redonated the dishes. 

Also, because I’m a dork, I went to Target and bought colored lables (the round circle ones) and then basically started numbering all of the dishes, this way I don’t have to keep trying to guess how many I have. One color was only for dinner dishes, another for salad, another for dessert, etc. and because there were one hundred stickers per color, it was perfect! After they were labeled I took pictures of them, so I have nicer photos on my home computer and in another online album. This is to stop me from buying duplicates and as I start the rental company, I can begin having an online catalogue.

It took a while to do this, but with FI’s help, it went by much faster. 

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 3 months ago by  MrsMeowton.
Post # 8
154 posts
Blushing bee

MrsMeowton:  no thank yuo for the long post! 🙂 that is an amazing idea to rent them out after. I love the mismatch plates I really want to do this, but worried about spending so much money, but if I could off set the cost but renting later that would help 🙂 I’m also an October 2015 bride 🙂 having my wedding on the 10th and going for a country vintage theme 🙂 I need to get started if im going to do this!

Post # 10
11 posts
  • Wedding: August 2014 - Farm

I can post pictures later at home, but we are doing mismatched China. We set a very firm budget of $1.00/dinner and $.50/salad. We very rarely went over it. We literally went to every Goodwill in Middle Tennessee and quite a few in Indiana. We would rotate the best stores every month or so. We only have a 6-month engagement, so we probably started in month 2 and were done by month 4. We had our best luck at Goodwill and church-run thrift stores. Ours aren’t quite as ornate as MrsMeowton’s, but they are beautiful nonetheless. More shabby chic than bold. They are all vintage, real china with a floral pattern and dozens of different patterns. We were buying for 200, but had already rented 100 awesome china plates from a rental facility. So we ended up staying under $300 for 100+ dinner plates and 200 cake plates. We are not doing cups or saucers. It can be really stressful, but it’s also super fun! I think setting a budget is key, because you’ll find many beautiful plates that will completely bust your budget if you let them. 


Post # 12
3920 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2015


Sorry, couldn’t resist! I got more dishes 🙂

Some of these were donated by a friend of mine (which I would also suggest looking into–I’ve had several people donate spare plates or purchase some they saw and thought I might like!) I don’t plan on using all of these above, but you never know what will look good together!

Post # 15
485 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

keevolpi:  I was totally on the vintage china bandwagon… I wanted it SO. BAD. and was pricing out how much it would cost to rent/buy/etc.  There are some companies that rent out vintage china and depending on where you live you may be able to rent for $1-3 per plate.  It may just be easier.  Google vintage rentals/ vintage china rentals for your area.

I decided it wasn’t in the budget so I nixed the idea but I collected vintage napkins instead!  They are all mismatched and were much cheaper.  I’m renting plain white china and the napkin will be placed on the plate.  I don’t have any pictures yet but I think it will look wonderful come October!


Leave a comment

Get our weekly roundup of the best of Weddingbee.
I agree to receive emails from the site. I can withdraw my consent at any time by unsubscribing.

Find Amazing Vendors