Customising your dinnerware is not only an incredibly stylish way to tailor your tabletop during the holidays and special occasions, but allows for you to pass down hand-painted, bespoke fine bone china to future generations to cherish. Known for its translucent elegance, bone china is the strongest china available and the least likely to chip. This makes it the perfect canvas for dinner plates! Here are all your questions answered as well as a few different ways to tailor your china!
1. WHERE TO START?
Carefully consider what you want to see on your dinner service. You will be looking at it every day after all! Consider:
1. Do you want a motif from your wedding invitation, such as a floral border?
2. Or, would you prefer a simple initial in the middle?
3. Are you looking for replacement plates for the old family china where the crest has perhaps faded?
4. Or would you like to commission a line drawing of your hose?
Have a think about about what you want on your dinner service. Don't forget you will have to look at it everyday!
Select what style china you would like from our customisable collections. Classic white bone china is available, as are an array of coloured borders, both gilded and plain, in six different timeless colours: Blush, Duke Blue, French Grey, Crimson, Sky Blue or Tiger Orange. Try mixing-and-matching colours, borders and styles across our collections to create your own set of complementary dinnerware.
3. BESPOKE INITIALS
Having your initialled monogrammed on your china is the most simple option for customised bone china. It will look smart in any kitchen or dining room as well as will stand the test of time. It's as simple as:
Choose your border colour and style, and decide if you'd like to mix and match with your dinner service.
Choose your letter, either from one of the fonts below or contact us to design a bespoke monogram.
Decide whether you want your initial / monogram in the centre of your plate, its size, or a miniature version on the border.
4. COAT OF ARMS OR CREST
European families have been decorating pottery with coats of arms since the Middle Ages. When porcelain replaced metal as the favoured material for elite tableware in the 18th century, armorial porcelain became very popular. The traditional shapes in these collections suit armorial dinner services very well. From a glamorous crest in the middle of the plate, to a more discrete crest on the 'shoulder' the possibilities are endless.
Gilding is a popular addition for more formal dinner services and we can add gold touches to the crest itself for an added bit of sparkle.
Send us the details of your desired coat of arms, including a scan of the artwork if possible (the College of Arms will produce an excellent small watercolour of your crest for £150 if required).
Select what border and gilding options you would like from our customisable china range here. Don't be afraid to mix and match with colours, gilding and styles either!
We'll provide a detailed quote based on the number of colours, gilding options and type of ware you would like made as part of your dinner service. (Usually takes 6-8 weeks from point of payment).
5. WEDDING CHINA
A new set of china to celebrate the beginning of a marriage is both a timeless and beautiful tradition, and one that we celebrate. Personalised dinner services were once the preserve of royalty, but since partnering with British Xavier China, we can create bespoke tableware with a meaningful design that is unique to you as a couple. These are some of our favourite design options:
- Entwine your initials in the centre of a clean white plate
- Replicate the border from your bespoke wedding stationary
- Replicate antique family china for your new home
- Back-stamp your plates with a wedding date, or, put in front and centre so your husband never forgets an anniversary again. (*Wink wink*).
With endless personalisation options you can make sure that your china is as unique as your relationship, and means something special to you both.
The best part is you won’t be choosing between beauty and practicality. Our bone china will survive decades of family feasts. It is slimmer and more elegant than other kinds of porcelain or pottery, but also stronger and less likely to chip. It is dishwasher friendly (unless you go for gold), and happy to be used day in, day out.
How do I know what it'll look like?
For all bespoke orders we generate a product image that shows exactly what your design will look like on the plates. We will make sure you are 100% happy with this product image before going ahead with any set up costs for the design.
How is the cost calculated for bespoke china?
The cost will be made up of 1) the price of the plain white plates you want to buy; 2) the 'set up cost' at the factory for your design; and 3) the decorating cost per plate (all done by hand).
How much is the 'set up cost' for a bespoke design?
Set up costs depend on the number of colours you choose to use in your design (including 'shades' of the same colour). It is a one-off expense that will never have to be repeated as your artwork is stored for future orders. Set up costs will seem significantly cheaper on larger orders. A £500 set-up cost spread over 12 plates is quite high at £42 per piece, while the same amount spread over a 72-piece dinner service is only £6.95 per plate.
Does the number of colours include the border?
Yes. You must buy plain white plates and add the border as part of your custom design to be certain that the colour of your border matches the other parts of your design exactly. A bit like wallpaper each batch can come out slightly differently meaning clashing shades.
What is the design has more than 9 colours in it?
You can either splash the cash, or we will work with you to reduce the number of colours in the artwork. There are simple ways to do this and quite often it creates an even more attractive impression as a simple colour scheme works well with the china.
Do I have to use the colours that are listed on the product ranges for customisable china?
No. It is easier if you pick from an existing colours (Duke Blue, Sky Blue, Tiger Orange, French Grey, Blush, Crimson) but not essential. We will visit the factory and find a colour among the hundreds available that matches your design as closely as possible, which is usually relatively straightforward.
Is there a minimum order for bespoke designs?
Set up costs do not change depending on the size of the order so can seem very high for a small order. You can, however, buy the 'set up' as a gift in itself so that a newly married couple, for example, can buy any number of plates with their bespoke design without having to pay for the set up ever again. We have no official minimum order requirement, but suggest buying in sets of six.
Can I reorder plates with the same bespoke design?
Once you have set-up your bespoke design with us, we will keep the artwork and screen in stock so that you or the recipient can re-order at any time without repeating the initial set up costs. The subsequent cost for the china will be at 'normal' prices.