So earlier I blogged about our kitchen revamp and some plans for minimizing and streamlining my cooking and baking supplies. I am back with a post on my minimalist dining essentials. Until I started listing all my kitchen items, I never realized how much I still have! Since my last post, I’ve unloaded about 10 more items (through donating and selling locally).
Everything on my dining essentials list, and my last post about my minimalist cooking and baking essentials, are of the “buy once” mentality. The idea is if you invest in good quality, timeless stuff, you won’t have to switch out and upgrade constantly! As things in my kitchen need replaced, I am replacing with the mindset of only replacing it this one last time – so I’ll invest in things that will last forever.
It’s so easy to go overboard collecting dishware. It’s functional art, after all. If you love it, keep it. But if you are out of space or don’t use half of your stuff, it’s always a good challenge to pare down. A good tactic may be to pack up anything you aren’t sure about, and if you don’t retrieve anything from the box in 6 months to a year, consider selling or donating it.
Here is my absolute dining essentials (these are not the exact items I own, this is just my #goals collage):
- Entree plates and dessert plates (mine are Fiestaware and I also have a “set” of mismatched thrift store plates and dessert plates for when I have a lot of people to feed). If it did it over again, I’d forgo the Fiestaware; while it’s fun, I actually find the rainbow explosion of color kind of limiting when I’m trying to go for a minimalist aesthetic..
- Wooden serving utensils.
- Cloth napkins. I only have everyday ones, but I plan to make or buy a set of nicer napkins for entertaining.
- Stainless flatware.
- Basic (nesting) small glass tumblers that work for water, juice, and cocktails. (No fancy bar ware collection needed.)
- Soup bowls.
- Stemless wine glasses. (These copper ones are amazing! I’m not sure if I’d miss the clear glass; currently I just drink my wine from small jelly jars, but I may start acquiring proper glasses.)
- Mugs. I’d love a collection of handmade mugs. Boo to perfectly matching mugs.
- Serving bowls. The soup bowls and a nice mixing bowl can also perform the job when entertaining and serving multiple dishes.)
- Large platter. (Extra dinner plates, a wooden cutting board, and small prep bowls can be used for serving appetizers.)
I listed most of my additional kitchen goods in my last post, but I didn’t mention that I also own the following serving/dining items (the asterisk (*) means they are on the chopping block):
- Gravy boat*
- Nesting bowls*
- A long melamine platter*
- 2 misc serving bowls
- Stainless ladle
- Stainless serving spoons
- Stainless serving spatula
- To-go dining items like stainless water bottles, stainless coffee cup, metal tiffens, glass food containers, bamboo utensils, and a stainless lunch box. This kind of stuff is pretty critical to minimizing trash, but does tend to take up real estate..
- Toddler food dishes, utensils, and cups (I could further pare down the cups). We are using RePlay brand dishes which are sturdy and made from recycled milk jugs. In hindsight I wish I’d have invested in stainless dishes, but I won’t be upgrading, as ours are perfectly functional for as long as we will need them.
This post (and my last) are the kinds I wish I’d seen when I first began to set up a household. Do not trust the wedding registry suggestions, the “off to college” guides, etc, unless they were written by minimalists! Had I invested in good, classic, multifunctional cooking and dining items 15 years ago, I’d have saved myself a bundle of money, not to mention all the resources. For example, now on my 4th set of skillets in 15 years, I finally invested in cast iron, which means this set will actually outlive me.
What’s on your must-have list?