While visiting an antique mall last December, the owner directed me to her room in the back. It was filled with sets of dishes and china that she bought from antique dealers closing their doors. She and her husband bought the entire store for a flat fee.
As I entered the room stacked full of dishes, she made me a deal I couldn’t refuse. She said, “$25 for any set you choose.”
I ask you, could you have walked away with nothing? My hostess went to a corner and pulled out this set of china. I came across the room and looked at these lovely dishes rimmed with blue lavender blooms.
Love!! An incomplete set, but I didn’t care. These Sheffield by Salem dishes were packed into the box of treasures I collected that day.
I took a salad plate with me to my parents’ house on my next visit. Painter Artist Mom (PAM) and I were sitting at the kitchen table talking, when Handy Builder Dad (HBD) walked through the room. He paused at the kitchen counter, where the plate was sitting, and commented, “Oh, you’ve got Grandmomma’s china.”
Grandmomma was our name for HBD’s mom, who died 20 years ago.
“What, Dad? Are you sure?”
Maybe I subliminally chose this china because I remembered it from childhood…
Yes, he thought it was her pattern but suggested I ask Auntie D, his sister. I quickly snapped a picture of the salad/bread plate and emailed it to Auntie D.
Her email reply was that yes, this was Grandmomma’s china pattern. Even in blue. She said you see it most often in purple, but the rare blue was hers. She said to notice the center emblem is not aligned perfectly with the rimmed blooms.
She’s right – see how the bloom spray on the rim above the center isn’t exact?
Much of my grandmother’s set was stolen in the 50’s – before I was born.
You get what I’m saying here? I never ate off of this china at my grandparents’ home.
There was never a china cabinet display, a table setting, or even a hint that it ever existed.
My aunt reported that she found one lone plate stashed in a kitchen cabinet while readying my grandparents’ home for sale. She kept it and hung her lone plate (in pretty bad shape) on a wall in her home.
Auntie D said Grandmomma’s china was taken to Montgomery Bell State Park in the 50’s inside a picnic basket.
The basket was stolen, so Grandmomma must have parted with the remaining partial set – all except one dinner plate.
I am still amazed that I bought this china set.
How did I know? I didn’t.
The thought has crossed my mind that this could actually be the stolen set, but why would it include a serving platter?
A gift arrived from Auntie D, some silverware pieces that match the china – from my grandmother’s collection. Thank you, Auntie D!!!
I feel my grandmother’s lavender bloom china, in a sense, has returned “home”. Amazing, isn’t it?
I am thankful for this gift that God gave me that day in the antique store. No One but my Father in Heaven could have orchestrated such!
Have you had a similar experience? Maybe not with china, but with some other item?
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