The Ugly Teacup Collection

A portion of the ugly teacup collection.

A portion of the ugly teacup collection.

I’m not generally fond of fancy china, but many years ago, my husband brought back a pair of hand painted teacups from one of his international trips. They were gloriously, unabashedly garish—so ugly they were gorgeous. Thus began the ugly teacup collection. One by one, we’ve added to our collection, browsing second-hand shops for likely candidates. My mother-in-law sent us the “best” examples from the teacup collection she kept as a girl. We also picked up a suitably ugly china teapot to go with the teacups.

The collection has steadily grown, even though Christchurch’s stock of ugly teacups is greatly diminished since the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes. We love to hate the ugly teacup collection. We use them whenever we have visitors, for Sunday afternoon pots of tea by the fire, or whenever we want an extra special cup of tea. They make me smile, and I laugh at my own ridiculous fondness for these overly fussy, overly fancy, and just plain ugly dishes.

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