Stoneware opinions - Denby?

After nearly 20 years of use and occasional breakage, we found that our Wedgwood stoneware was getting sparse so we went shopping for some new stuff. Fell in love with some Denby stoneware… but at (say) 28 bucks for a cereal bowl, vs. 8 bucks for some nice-looking Noritake… well, I can do that math.

Trouble is, the Noritake hasn’t held up. In fact, if you look at it funny, it chips (very little of the old Wedgwood chipped under normal use). So the pricier stuff might have been a better deal after all!

A Denby pattern I love is being discontinued. As a result, it’s way on sale so I’m tempted to pick some up even though it’s still a bit pricey.

Anyone own Denby stoneware and have any comments on how it holds up? (I know this is a long shot but it can’t hurt to ask around).

What does the pattern look like? Stoneware as a rule is pretty resilient, so you might be able to get something you like for less.

Then again, I adore my grandmother’s uber-traditional Old Country Roses china simply because I have lovely memories of tea at her house in those girly, fluted cups, so I’ll buy a piece at a time or ask for it for my birthday from now until I have a full set.

We have Denby. We’ve used the plates and bowls every day for about seven years and they still look great. Not a single piece has broken or chipped, and it’s not for lack of trying. When we first got them I was worried because they were so expensive and I babied them, but now I’m constantly smashing pieces into each other with no ill effect. A couple of the large plates have very slight scratches from the use of knives, but that’s all the damage we’ve been able to do to them.

BTW, we have the Denby Boston pattern. My wife’s brother has a similar pattern but with an all-blue field. His is also holding up extremely well after more than ten years.

It’s this pattern, which is a fairly simple one (though it’s got a few accent pieces with patterns, for nice contrast). The Noritake we’ve been using runs about half (or less) of those prices, but if it doesn’t hold up well, it’s not a good tradeoff. Admittedly, the Noritake is thinner material, even though it claims it’s “stoneware”. I want something with a heftier feel next time around.

What fun :slight_smile: I’ve got fine china that is a family thing also - it’s a design I’d have never picked in a million years (too frilly) but it’s happy-making to use it because of the memories.

Wedgwood have just gone [del]bust[/del] into administration so you should get a good deal there. Just buy sufficient to cover wear and tear. OTOH auctions are the ideal place to buy this sort of thing.

Thanks - this is the sort of thing I’m hoping to hear!

The pattern discontination is a mixed blessing - I can get what I like for a lot less, but it’s now or never!

We had some Denby stoneware (the azure range) as wedding presents and it is good quality. One of the reasons I put it on our gift list was that my parents had some that had lasted for years and years.

We had some we bought at a garage sale. It had been the sellers’ grandmother’s. We gave it to my MIL to combine with her old Denby a while back. None of it has ever chipped on our watch, 15+ years now. Good stuff.

My mom has quite a bit of it, and a few of her plates are chipped. But she’s had them for probably 18 years now, so I guess that’s OK. Those prices, though…I wouldn’t. I know you didn’t ask that, but I’d rather just buy new stuff every few years. Tastes change, you know? The denby that my mom has she would NEVER pick out today.

Good point on tastes changing. I’m pretty confident that the pattern I like, I’ll still like in 20ish years, as I still love my original Wedgwood from 23 years ago, but as you’ve noted, that might not be true for everyone.

A few chips after 18 years is not so bad. The stuff I’ve bought more recently, though, chips within a year.

We got Denby in 1976. It is still our everyday set. I dropped a butter plate two weeks ago. That was the first breakage we’ve ever had. No chips. Some slight knive scratches in the right lighting. I’m a fan.

I love my Denby. My sister loves her Denby. The range I have (Fire) was being discontinued just when I decided it was the one I wanted, so I got it discounted. I’ve also found pieces on ebay and Amazon for less than retail, brand new!

Our Denby stoneware set is over 13 years old. We use it every day. It has held up terrifically. I can’t count how many times I have accidentally whacked plates on our enamel sink and they have never broken. I think I have lost one plate and that was because I dropped it on the floor. And it still looks as good as it did when we first got it. I think maybe one plate and one bowl have a little chip.

Denby is good stuff! (Unfortunately for us, they discontinued our pattern about 7 years ago…)

Denby USA seems to still have Fire:

Forgot to pop in last week but I wanted to thank you all for weighing in! It sounds like I’d definitely be happy with the Denby, quality-wise. I’m sorely tempted by the pattern that’s being discontinued, as it’s the one I like best and it’s almost affordable. I probably will not purchase it at this time as the budget doesn’t have room for that (even at 40% off, we’re looking at 20 bucks per piece on average) but when we are ready to start replacing the current batch, it’ll definitely be Denby!

I have had the Denby Midnight pattern since 1987, so 21 years now and I have chipped two pieces and my husband broke a cup in the first year, and that’s it. The patterns are so plain that it’s hard to get fed up with it.

My parents live about 8 miles from the factory but as my pattern is long discontinued I don’t bother going any more, but a lot of my stuff I got there as seconds (slightly weaker colour or slightly blurred pattern and my biggest win, Denby was briefly owned by Coloroll and they had a boatload of plates stamped with the wrong brand on the bottom - who cares about that?!)

I have some 1988-vintage Denby Camelot (my share of the engagement presents). Gradually pieces have got dropped and broken over the years, but everything that hasn’t been dropped has lasted with barely a mark on it.