A few weeks back I was perusing, or at least trying to peruse shops for china. First off, one of my favorites has disappeared from the face of the planet. Fine, I can get over that. So we go to the departmental stores, namely Sears and the Bay. The first was a washout. Well, I guess it might be as the word is that Sears are pulling in their horns. I had higher hopes for the Bay, (Hudson Bay Company), as I have spent many a happy hour wandering through their fine china. Nope, not this time. All gone except about three types of rather bland white china.
Why? No point asking the employees, who will give the stock answer that there was no call for such things. However, I can make an educated guess. Most of the finest china was not dishwasher safe. Sure, this is very expensive and people would have a regular set of china for everyday use, but times have changed dramatically from the last century to this one. Yes, dishwashers have been around for decades, so what is different? Time and custom.
At one time, it was the norm for a household to rely on a single income with the wife, or husband staying home to raise the kids. Not so much now with tax breaks for childcare and way more expensive living conditions. It has made for homes where time is important as it is restricted by circumstances of both working. After marriage and before having kids, it is very much the norm for there to be two incomes, which leads to a reliance on labor-saving devices, such as the dishwasher. Now people are conditioned to use it if they have one and will do so even if one of them stays home after the kids as this is a proven way to get more time for important things, like raising a child. It means the choice of fancy china is not going to happen because it must be washed by hand. Yep, that is always a chore. How many people with dishwashers also have draining trays and loads of tea towels? I don’t possess either one, so when I wash my fine china I have to improvise.
Times are changing and I didn’t get the china I was after.