I have a great job. I love food and cooking and all the things that go with those topics which, when you think about it, covers a lot. Because part of my job involves doing book and product reviews, people occasionally send me things to evaluate and report on, and that is how I came to own a set of Fiestaware (service for eight, so far).
Allow me to emphasize that I was not sent eight place settings to evaluate. I received one five-piece place setting of Fiestaware in the new color, Tangerine. It was well packed and arrived in perfect condition. I admired the beautiful simplicity of the design, the fine glaze, the heft of the pieces and, of course, the color. If Fiestaware Tangerine were a voice, it would have to be a soprano - clear and high.
I put the five pieces in my cupboard with my other dishes, which are a perfectly serviceable and attractive green and white pattern. I mean, what else can you do with one place setting? I suppose I thought the pieces would work their way to the bottom of the various stacks. It did not happen that way. First of all, the Fiestaware pieces just would not blend in. Every time the cupboard was opened, all you could see was those five glimmering Tangerine pieces. I found myself competing with my husband over the cereal bowl. He wanted it. I wanted it. Same thing with the dinner plate.
Tangerine, when she dances by, senoritas stare and caballeros sigh.
- Frank Sinatra / Tangerine So I decided to buy another place setting so we could each have our own Fiestaware. I had Turquoise in mind. I went online to order a Turquoise four-piece place setting (we are coffee mug people, as opposed to cup-and-saucer people), and made my selection. However, the price was so reasonable and the other colors so beautiful, I had no difficulty whatsoever in talking myself into ordering three place settings instead of one. So I found myself in possession not only of Tangerine, but Turquoise, Persimmon and Sunflower.
Soon I was fretting because my little service contained more warm colors than cool. I'll spare you the details, but let's just say that I've added Periwinkle, Plum, Cinnabar and Cobalt to the mix, and I even sprang for a piece of the discontinued Juniper I had been pining for - the 64-ounce Large Disk pitcher - on Amazon's Marketplace.
Fiestaware is made by the Homer Laughlin China Company (often known as HLC). They initially invested a place setting in me, and I'd say it paid off for both of us. Everything about these dishes appeals to me - the graceful design, the jewel-like colors and, notably, the reasonable price. And, of course, they are dishwasher and microwave safe. Oh, I suppose that if your taste runs more to rosebuds than art deco, Fiestaware won't be your cup of tea. But, personally, I can't imagine a better combination of beauty and practicality. This is a product that has withstood the test of time for good reason.
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