1. Home
  2. Dinnerware

Modern Tableware That Will Make Every Meal a Fête

Pristine white plates and hand-painted floral mugs haven’t gone completely out of style, but they definitely evolved. Modern tableware is much more unusual and different. Flawless shapes and textures aren’t a strict standard for it. And patterns changed from complicated florals to abstract brushstrokes and watercolor stains.

Modern Tableware With a Bling

Metallics have found their way into everything from table decor to interior decorations. A big home decor trend for the past several years, it adds tons of glamour to any room. It’s not difficult to mix and match and fairly easy to take care of. So, take advantage of it, and start creating tablescapes for the upcoming holidays.

Metal Charger - Gold
Metal Charger – Gold via West Elm
Aegean gold dinnerware collection
Aegean gold dinnerware collection via L’Objet
Chaehoon Moon tableware
Chaehoon Moon tableware
Bedford dinnerware collection
Bedford dinnerware collection via Kelly Wearstler

Metallic finish goes well with any color, but especially looks good with black, white, and teal or turquoise. If you want more options, you can also choose from metallic shades of copper, bronze, brass, and silver.

While gold is a versatile festive hue for any occasion, silver will look fitting for the Christmas table. Copper, however, looks good for Thanksgiving.

Marble Dinnerware

Another trendy material that spread beyond its primary areas like kitchen and bathroom to become an omnipresent trend is marble. Even if certain objects aren’t made of actual stone, the marble effect gives them that undeniable beauty and timeless allure.

Pemberton ink bowl by Martha Sturdy
Pemberton ink bowl by Martha Sturdy
Brass bangle plate
Brass bangle plate by Sayar & Garibeh
Mali small marble bowl
Mali small marble bowl via Country Road

Popularization of marble (marble effect) in dinnerware was just a matter of time. While the stone itself doesn’t handle water and food very well, other materials that do can be painted as this most noble of stones.

Marble stands are quite popular, though. Holding cakes, cheese, and small appetizers may not cause any damage to marble, especially if you protect it with liner.

Abstract Painted Plates

Contemporary art on your plates can make for a ton of great conversations. Or simply brighten up every meal. Chaotic, rough, or conversely smooth and gentle, the brushstroke patterns come in an array of different colors, in case you don’t want to create a color arrangement yourself.

Abstract brushstroke salad plate
Abstract brushstroke salad plate via West Elm
Hand-painted Medium Ceramic Dish by Martinich & Carran
Hand-painted Medium Ceramic Dish by Martinich & Carran
Ceramics by Elnaz Nourizadeh
Ceramics by Elnaz Nourizadeh

There is no limit to creativity when it comes to hand-painted ceramics. You can even order customized pieces that would be unique to your household.

The combination of colors can surprise as well as delight, and the patterns turn out less repetitive and more irregular and unusual.

Modern Tableware of Unconventional Materials

Modern dinnerware isn’t all ceramics, however. Now, you can find plates and other tableware made of all kinds of materials like concrete, lava rock, and even biodegradable bamboo fibers.

Concrete tableware by Vido Nori
Concrete tableware by Vido Nori
PECA created plates from LAVA stone
PECA created plates from LAVA stone
Biobu Bamboo Kids Tableware Ekobo
Biobu Bamboo Kids Tableware Ekobo

Since many people pay a lot of attention to the materials their dishes are made of, the designers try and seek for not only eco-friendly solutions but also unconventional ones.

Concrete makes for surprisingly stylish tableware. Specially treated to be water-resistant and food safe, such pieces may even be cleaned in a dishwasher.

Minimalist Modern Tableware

It’s hard not to talk about minimalism, when we’re on about modern design. Minimal plates, mugs, and bowls make for very contemporary dining tablescapes. Muted earthy colors and unique textures are the only decorations that can be found in such modern tableware.

Hue Dinner Plates
Hue Dinner Plates via Crate & Barrel
Iittala and Issey Miyake Home Collection
Iittala and Issey Miyake Home Collection
Abbesses Ceramic Set by Poketo
Abbesses Ceramic Set by Poketo
Stoneware + Porcelain Pasta Bowl
Stoneware + Porcelain Pasta Bowl by Herriott Grace

Simple shapes, irregular surfaces, and washed out hues definitely make for an ascetic look, but it somehow manages to appear charming.

You can see this type of dinnerware in Scandinavian decor that praises simplicity, affordability, and neutrality.

Unusual Shapes

Not only materials changed in modern tableware design. Shapes turned functional but also more creative and unexpected. You can find plates shaped to fit a certain dish. And you can also find dinnerware pieces that will make you pause and wonder about their purpose.

Flower Plate White Speckle
Flower Plate White Speckle by Bridget Bodenham
5.5 Designers daily menu plates
5.5 Designers daily menu plates
Just tableware collection by Rikki Tikki
Just tableware collection by Rikki Tikki
Geometry collection by DesignK
Geometry collection by DesignK

This type of tableware is an alternative to china sets your grandmother used to display in her cabinets. Not too practical, they surely tickle imagination, and can get conversation flowing.

Not all unusually shaped tableware is useless. And you can find pieces that will both serve you dinner, and be there to entertain you.

Ink & Watercolor

If you think about it, quite a few people see tableware as their canvas. Chefs, food photographers, and finally designers and craftsmen – all use dinnerware to frame their work. The latter may use it to create beautiful paintings, but one of the latest trends is ink and watercolor blots.

Dalmatian Plate
Dalmatian Plate by Studio Oyama
Como Dinner Plates
Como Dinner Plates via Crate & Barrel
Canyon dinner plate
Canyon dinner plate via Anthropologie
Oiva plate
Oiva plate by Marimekko

If you don’t mind their very close resemblance to the real thing, this dinnerware may become a very designing part of your table decor.

Mix and match it with white pieces to create a starker contrast. And add colored glass to punctuate the arrangement.

Color & Pattern

Modern tableware comes in any color and hue imaginable from matte black to rosewater pink. But it’s not just the color that gives dinnerware its allure. Patterns, prints, and drawings make it that much more diverse and intriguing.

Pink ring plate
Pink ring plate by Suite One Studio
Fortuny teal dinnerware collection
Fortuny teal dinnerware collection via L’Objet
Unsealed Pattern by Inesa Malafej for Rosental
Unsealed Pattern by Inesa Malafej for Rosental
Christian Lacroix plate pattern
Christian Lacroix plate pattern via Casa De Perrin
Jars Tourron Purple Dinner Plate
Jars Tourron Purple Dinner Plate via Crate & Barrel

Even color isn’t an absolute. There are pieces that are solid bright and sets that are grained with neutral gray. It’s just a pleasure to look for nuance in each and every design.

Bolder patterns are easier to spot on the table, so if you want to add bold accents to your tablescape opt for the style of Christian Lacroix.

Hybrid Design

In a world of abundance, choice can put one through agony. To avoid this tortuous practice, some designers try to give their customers more things packed tightly in one piece. This is probably where the hybrid style comes from.

El-Aich Designs collection
El-Aich Designs collection
Seletti Hybrid tableware collection
Seletti Hybrid tableware collection
Modern matt Dessert plate
Modern matt Dessert plate via Etsy

Seletti isn’t the only ones, who’ve thought about Frankensteining the pieces of different plates together. El-Aich Designs came up with a more organic way of piecing different designs. And half-dipped plates were bound to become a hot trend.

It might seem aesthetically torn up, but at least it’s fun and not dull at all.

Popping Colors & Drawings

Just like patterns, popping brights are great for decorating a dining table. Pastels can too draw enough attention, and make a statement in decor. But there are also drawings and prints that can make a certain plate stand out.

Gathering Series by Saniyo
Gathering Series by Saniyo
Deco Animal Salad Plates
Deco Animal Salad Plates via West Elm
Malachite dinnerware collection
Malachite dinnerware collection via L’Objet
Skeletal BONE APPETIT dinner plates
Skeletal BONE APPETIT dinner plates via Etsy
Baroque Platter in Navy Brushstroke
Baroque Platter in Navy Brushstroke via Suite One Studio

They range from a single bright brushstroke to a natural stone pattern to skull-shaped sticker. Again the choice is abundant.

We like the minimalism of bright geometric bright pops, but there is something about an organic-looking brushstroke that makes it especially alluring.

Modern Textures

Modern tableware is very tactile. You can find plates with all kinds of different textures. Lace, for one, is quite popular as it resembles doilies. Geometric 3D shapes and organic materials are too repeated in tableware to give it more detail.

Eccentric Plates by Daniel Van Dijck
Eccentric Plates by Daniel Van Dijck
Sophia Dining Stone Morgan & Finch
Sophia Dining Stone Morgan & Finch via Bed Bath & Beyond
Alchimie black dinnerware collection
Alchimie black dinnerware collection via L’Objet
Kate Spade Castle Peak collection
Kate Spade Castle Peak collection via 100 Layers of Cake and Macy’s

Smooth flawless surfaces aren’t that exciting anymore. Especially not when you can have all that beautiful diversity of finishes, textures, and shapes.

Irregularities in modern ceramics are very important as they aren’t regarded as mistakes anymore. But make each collection look very different from the rest.

Non-Traditional Coffee Cups

A cup of morning refreshment has become a lifelong tradition to generations. So coffee cups didn’t stop on one shape or size. While some prefer max-sized mugs, others still savour each sip from mini cups that can make a difference on the table.

22 Karat Climax by Romy Northover
22 Karat Climax by Romy Northover
Sip mug beige
Sip mug beige by Studio Arhoj
Ceramic mugs by Bridget Bodenham
Ceramic mugs by Bridget Bodenham

There is a lot of freedom in modern tableware, so you don’t have to sweat about rules while serving a table. Pick what you like, accomodate your needs, and enjoy this limitless source of beauty with every bite.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *