Fine china is not cheap. Regardless of whether you purchased it or received it as a gift, you want to make sure it keeps its sheen, remain unbroken, and free from chips and cracks as long as possible. Proper storage and cleaning are keys to making sure they last beautifully.
If you plan to keep your china on shelves, make sure your cabinet will hold the weight of the stacked dishes. Don’t stack too many dishes on top of each other, as it’s possible for the weight of the stack to crack one or more pieces on the bottom of the stack. To prevent chipping, cracking, and scratching, place something in between each plate, you cab use felt plate protectors or thick paper towels.
Hang cups on hooks to prevent chipping. You can also keep the cups on its saucers in a cabinet. Never stack cups on top of each other as it’s impossible to keep the cups from touching each other. Stacking can cause chipping and scratches even with felt protectors in between them.
Cleaning china should be done carefully. Rinse them immediately especially plates, and serving pieces to prevent food from sticking. Never stack them in the sink, and wash one piece at a time to prevent them from hitting each other. Use a mild detergent and a soft sponge. Dry them immediately with a soft cloth.
Most china are dishwasher-safe, just like slate plate dinnerware, but some are to be cleaned hand-wash only. Whichever washing method is appropriate for your china, do not expose them to extreme heat as this may fade colored decorations.
If they are dishwasher-safe, use “china” setting (or the “light” setting if your dishwasher does not have the setting for “china”) with mild detergent. Use air-dry setting only to avoid exposing china to extreme heat.
Some china are microwave-safe and some are not so this is worth checking the box or manufacturer’s website for.
Stains and surface cracks
Even with utmost care, over the years your china can get stains and surface cracks. If your china gets aluminum stains from dish water, use baking soda. Rub gently as rubbing hard could cause more harm than good. If stain occurred from hard water or lime, soak china overnight in warm water with citrus rinds before washing as usual.
If you notice the appearance of hairline cracks on the surface of the china, soak it in warm milk for 30 minutes. If the cracks don’t vanish, chances are the cracks go deeper than the surface.
If you plan on displaying your china, it is recommended to display it in high-quality china cabinet that will offer the best protection. It is also wise to display just a few pieces and store the rest in a safe place. For especially valued pieces, consider displaying them in individual display cases.