Training Your Eye for Quality: Housewares

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A very important part of choosing to live this “Full and Frugal” lifestyle is that you have to develop your eye to spot quality. There are so many well made things to be had out there in the world or second-hand and thrift stores, but if you don’t have the eye to catch something truly well made, you may very well find yourself lost in the piles of stuff that some people should have considered throwing away instead of giving to charity. It can be such a daunting task! Making yourself familiar with quality can take so much of that stress away.

For example, I have posted some photos of a hand-made pottery tea set that I purchased several months ago at a local thrift store. As you can see, this is not just a couple of mis-matched pottery cups of similar color, but not-so-similar size and shape. These cups are all of the same size and intricate pattern of colors. You can see that the same pattern is used very consistently between each cup and also with the teapot. The set also has a very nice, thick, shiny finish. And finally, when you turn each each piece over, you can see that each one is signed by the same artist. (NOT made in China! Thank goodness!) In this case, the set was crafted by an artist named Don Herron. Other than the obvious quality of the craftsmanship, I had no idea whether or not this man’s work was well known. I looked him up online and apparently he is a professor of ceramics at the University of Texas and has a large gallery to display his work in Austin. Wow! Pretty neat! I think we can gather that this man has a gift. And the most satisfying part is that I was able to recognize quality when I saw it!

I payed $25 dollars for the set of six cups and the teapot. I was extra blessed that day because that particular thrift store had 50% off of all of their houseware items! Best of luck developing your “eye for quality”!:)

-Sierra:)

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