How to Prep Your Dinnerware for the Holidays

October is a busy month for many of us. In addition to raking up leaves and winterizing our homes, October also starts the holiday season. Before things get a little too crazy around the house, this is a great time to take inventory of our holiday dinnerware and get it ready for the holiday season. Here’s a few of the ways that I prep my holiday dinnerware for entertaining.

Bring them out of storage. All of my holiday dinnerware is kept in storage when not in use. One of my first tasks is locating plates, platters and so on and then assessing their condition. Pieces that are chipped or broken are replaced. If your dinnerware is no longer in stock like mine is, ordering replacements now means they should arrive in plenty of time for holiday entertaining.

Give them a good washing. Most of my dinnerware is dishwasher safe except for a few decorative pieces and over sized platters that must be hand washed. Prepping my holiday dishes means washing everything thoroughly so it will be ready to use when the time comes. Grimy buildup is removed with a grease cutting dish washing soap such as Dawn. For stubborn grey marks on my good china, I use a baking soda paste to gently remove the marks. Stubborn stains on stoneware are removed using a product made by the Pfaltzgraff company known as “Stoneware Cleaner.” This cleaner is applied directly to the stain and after soaking for a minute or so, stubborn stains wipe away clean.

Store them in a safe place. Unless you’ve got gobs of pantry space, most of us have to do a little shifting around to make space for holiday dishes. What I do is move my summer dishes, vintage plastics, and fall canning supplies into deep storage to create space for my holiday dishes. The dishes are then stacked neatly so they are easy to find and easy to grab.

Holiday entertaining is stressful enough without worrying about what kind of shape your dishes are. Bringing your dishes out of storage now so they can be cleaned and assessed for damage means that you’ll be prepared for entertaining when the holiday season finally arrives.

More by this contributor:
Where to find replacements for broken Christmas china and dinnerware.
How to bring hot food to a Christmas or Thanksgiving dinner.
How to prevent dishes from breaking in the sink.

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