How To Care For Your Ware
Ceramics have a timeless appeal that's hard to resist. Whether you own delicate porcelain dinnerware, sturdy stoneware plates, or decorative earthenware, you know that ceramics bring both beauty and functionality into your life. They can be intricate and delicate, like fine china adorned with delicate patterns, or robust and rustic, like handmade pottery with earthy textures.
Ceramics are known for their remarkable durability. When crafted and cared for correctly, they can last for generations. It’s what makes them so special. Whether it's your grandmother's heirloom teapot or a set of contemporary dinnerware, ceramics are built to withstand everyday use and still look stunning.
However, even the most durable ceramics require some tender loving care, including knowing how to clean ceramics, to maintain their beauty and functionality. Let's learn more about some common issues and solutions for caring for ceramics.
Clean with a Light Touch
When it comes to cleaning your beloved ceramics, remember to approach the task with a delicate touch. Gently clean with warm, soapy water and a soft sponge/ cloth, and avoid abrasive scrubbers that can scratch the surface, so opt for a kinder approach. Remember, not all dirt or stain removal is required, as they may hold historical significance or be challenging to eliminate without damaging the piece. Before cleaning the entire piece, test a small portion to ensure its safety. A little patience and gentle cleaning will restore your ceramics' shine.
Gentle Handwashing is the Key
While some ceramics may be dishwasher-safe, it's generally best to handwash your pieces, especially those made of porcelain or adorned with intricate designs. Use warm, soapy water and a soft sponge or dry cloth to gently clean them. For sturdier stoneware and earthenware, a dishwasher on a gentle cycle may be suitable, but avoid extreme temperature changes.
Handle with Care
Handling your ceramics with care is essential to ensure their longevity and preserve their beauty. Store your ceramicware carefully with soft liners in between pieces to cushion them. When stacking, place liners to keep items from touching directly. When moving them from one spot to another, lift them, don’t pull or push them. This will avoid scratching and chipping.
Mind the Temperature
Ceramics are made from natural materials like clay and minerals, and have a unique structure that makes them sensitive to sudden temperature changes. Allow hot dishes to cool a bit before placing them on cold surfaces or immersing them in water. Gradual temperature changes are essential for maintaining the structural and aesthetic beauty of ceramics.
Protect from Direct Sunlight
Ceramics are often treasured as long-lasting pieces, appreciated for their timeless beauty, that are passed down through generations. By protecting them from direct sunlight, you extend their lifespan. Ceramics displayed in shaded areas are less prone to glaze deterioration, surface cracks, or fading, ensuring that your pieces remain in excellent condition for years to come. Your ceramics will thank you for their shady spot.
Do Not Microwave Gold-Plated Ceramics
Ceramics, with their enduring charm and ease of maintenance, are a kitchen favorite. Caring for ceramics, even those adorned with delicate gold accents, is a breeze. When reheating food, just transfer it to a microwave-safe container without any metal, including gold plating, to ensure both your ceramics and microwave remain in top shape. This simple precaution safeguards against potential damage or safety risks. It's an easy way to make sure they stay beautiful and last a long time in your kitchen. So, enjoy the simplicity of taking care of ceramics and keep enjoying their timeless beauty without any worries!
Frequent Inspection and Professional Care
Regularly inspect your ceramics for signs of damage, like small cracks or chips. Catching problems early can save your treasures. Sometimes, your ceramics may require more than DIY cleaning. Learn when it's time to call in a professional conservator to ensure proper restoration without further damage.
Appreciate the Perfection in Imperfection
Lastly, When caring for unpainted ceramics, behold the mantra of "less is more." These pieces lack glaze protection, so a gentle touch and minimalist approach is the key. The same principle applies to decorative ceramics like figurines or vases. Not every smudge or blemish requires removal; some imperfections contribute to their unique story. Learn how to balance the art of cleaning with preservation.
Sage Large Plate + Small Plate
Always remember, with a little attention and the right care, these pieces will remain more than just objects; they will become companions on your journey through life, forever radiant and gleaming.