What To Look For When Buying Fine Bone China

Bone china can complete any dinner party, with its elegant, delicate appearance as well as the professional, hand crafted decoration. It can add an air of sophistication and can give your guests something to talk about over dinner.

If you decide you wish to purchase a fine bone china set, in the event of holding a superb dinner party, you do not want to be supplied with imitation china tableware. You will want the real deal that will become a valuable heirloom to pass down generations. But what do you need to look for when buying authentic china tableware? Here are some useful tips that will help you spot the real thing:


When bone china is made, it is created with a mixture of animal bone ash and china clay. This makes it look delicate in appearance and gives it the white colour is it associated with. To test the quality of the china and see if what you are holding is indeed an authentic piece, hold it up to the light and if you are able to see a silhouette of your hand behind the china, then it is of excellent quality.

In the firing process, the glaze or finish on the china gathers together to give it a delicate smoothness. This is called ‘Patina’, which gives the china a smooth feel, which can add a bit of class. This also adds to the value of the china. Nowadays, some bone china is labelled with ‘dishwasher safe’, but it is recommended to hand wash with a mild soap.


As fine bone china is naturally delicate looking; you should also consider the appearance of the patterns that are hand painted onto the china. These can be very sought after in collecting circles and like the ‘Patina’ can add value to the piece.

Avoid buying any pieces of cracked, or stained china as these show that it was not cared for properly in the first place and are generally considered factory seconds if purchasing from a retailer. Fine bone china is meant to last, so you will want to purchase pieces that are damage free.

High quality bone china comes with a hallmark. This is often found on the underside that will tell you who the manufacturer, when it was made and can sometimes come with initials or signatures of the artist. This will guarantee that the pieces you are buying are authentic.

The best Locations to Buy Authentic fine Bone China

It is advised that you seek out a china specialist to purchase authentic dinner ware. You will be guaranteed that you are buying a first rate set of fine bone china. Online retailers can provide genuine pieces but always ensure that what they are selling is original and not a cheap imitation, it is better to seek out antique shops where you can view the pieces in person.

In conclusion, following this brief guide will hopefully give you some idea about what to look for in genuine pieces of fine bone china. Remember to take special precautions when maintaining and storing as careless treatment may result in irreplaceable damage. There are many specialists on the internet that can provide advice and guidance on how to properly care for fine bone china, you do want to display dinner ware that will provide that sense of sophistication to any event.

Harry Price is a talented young man.  In addition to writing, he an excellant cook, he pays football for his local team and he plays bass guitar too.