Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Vintage Tea Cup Terrarium

As I promised last post, here's what I did with those dollar succulents I picked up from the Melrose Trading Post last week.

So it all goes back to the last time I was visiting my parents in New Jersey, I promised to clean out their basement for them. In an old, dusty box, I found the dinnerware set that I grew up eating off of as a little kid:

I remember many a plate of spaghetti bolognese served on these plates on a Sunday night after Chinese school. Turns out this china is Myott/Staffordshire's discontinued Finlandia line, manufactured in 1982 in England.

As you may remember, it's the little old lady in me that can't turn up an old tea cup that was made in England, Japan, or basically anywhere but America or China (unless it's like, old China china). Sadly, cleaning means getting rid of stuff, so I donated the whole set to Big Brothers Big Sisters, in hope that someone will need a beautiful set of dishes to eat off of. In the meantime, there's such nostalgia for me when I look at the's just such a gorgeous hue of blue on white.

I stared many hours at that sugar bowl on our breakfast table, and though my parents rarely used cream in their coffee or tea, we used it on nice occasions. As a kid, I remember thinking that cluster pattern on top looked like weird grapes. And it looks like I'm also not the only person who has an appreciation for this pattern. Blogger Anne Marie, who runs the site did a whole post on how lovely the Myott Finlandia is...

 And check out what seller Botanicalgems made for sale on Etsy from an original Myott tea set:

From Botanicalgems on

A pretty awesome jewelry holder!

Had I found that image before I donated all our dishes, I would've kept them and made my own jewelry dishes with them. Or at least sold them on eBay...looks like I could've fetched a couple hundred bucks at the going rate. D'oh!

But alas, old dishes must go, and actors must fly to Los Angeles with carry-on luggage, which means...I saved four pieces from charity. Yes, four of these tea cups were wrapped in underwear and sweaters and stuffed in my suitcase and flown across the country.

Not pictured above is the sugar bowl. Just looking at these makes me happy, but I rarely drink from teacups like that. So I decided to repurpose them in a way that I know all too well...

Just grabbed some basic potting soil and added some perlite...

...and mixed these suckers up, topped with some pretty white rock and sand.

Here's a close up of one of them, sitting pretty on my cluttered kitchen window sill.

I'll give a couple away as gifts and keep the other two so that I can think of my childhood while I do the dishes.