Life Hacks: A Colourful Kitchen

Before I begin, I both apologise and acknowledge that to most readers this will be rather dry and dull but I’m childishly excited to write it.
I love old crockery, cups, mugs, kitchenware. All of it, the older the better. Alongside this I also love anything that’s rather bright because for me, cooking was never a particularly enjoyable experience but when I moved to university I was left with no choice but to cook for myself and so headed off, over three years ago, with a friend, to trawl the charity shops of Swansea and begin my collection of kitchenware. This is point where most people will go ‘I’m so not interested’. That’s fine, I get it. I’ll never read about your collection of old belts and watch straps and so life goes on happily.

There was always the option to go to IKEA like all other students, pick up the 12 piece set of plain white plates and bowls which, when they inevitably break, can be replaced easily. But no, I took the option of spending hours and hours, months, years, trawling shops up and down the country, building up my collection slowly. Crying each time something got broken (seriously) because they can’t be replaced and I love them all. I grow attached to things, plates and knives included. I’m still not over the breakage of a lovely cornflower blue mug that happened in my first university – I laugh at myself for this but seriously, that mug and I spent many hours in my bed reading books I barely understood. I get very protective over my fragile old plates because I’ve spent so long tracking them down and once they’re gone they’re gone.

To save your boredom I’ll just go ahead and share the pictures of my collection. This is only a small selection of the things currently in use, I have three or four big baskets of bits and bobs I’m not currently using which one day, when I have a home and space to spread them out, will be used.  Not all of these are from charity shops, some are from Home Sense, that side-venture of TKMaxx, because I found lots of colourful, lovely, affordable bits there, and I believe a cup or two are from IKEA, and some have been donated from kind friends and family – full Tupperware jelly moulds & grater set included.

Lauren x

These two lovely colourful saucepans came from Homesense and my old, well-loved stockpot came from a student homeware sale and cost me about 50p

These two lovely colourful saucepans came from Homesense and my old, well-loved stockpot came from a student homeware sale and cost me about 50p.

 

This is the majority of my bowls. The two sweet little Disney steel bowls came from a student homeware sale. Most of these came from charity shops but I got the bottom floral plate from a friend's grandmother and I love it so much. The royal blue plate is possibly the most loved part of my collection.

This is the majority of my bowls. The two sweet little Disney steel bowls came from a student homeware sale. Most of these came from charity shops but I got the bottom floral plate from a friend’s grandmother and I love it so much. The royal blue plate is possibly the most loved part of my collection.

These are most of my plates.

These are most of my plates.

I think this Disney plate is display only - it came with string strung through the back and I'm not meant to eat from it (something to do with lead paint) but I do anyway...

I think this Disney plate is display only – it came with string strung through the back and I’m not meant to eat from it (something to do with lead paint) but I do anyway…

I *think* this came from a charity shop in Leicestershire, possibly a gift. I can't quite remember but it's chunky and it has that sort of ugly-lovely charm about it.

I *think* this came from a charity shop in Leicestershire, possibly a gift. I can’t quite remember but it’s chunky and it has that sort of ugly-lovely charm about it.

Ah, a fraction of the many many mugs and cups I own. The pastel coloured stripy mug was a gift from a very special friend and is, admittedly, Cath Kidston - much easier to replace - this item is in fact the second after I dropped the original on the kitchen floor, cried, and immediately bought a replacement.

Ah, a fraction of the many many mugs and cups I own. The pastel coloured stripy mug was a gift from a very special friend and is, admittedly, Cath Kidston – much easier to replace – this item is in fact the second after I dropped the original on the kitchen floor, cried, and immediately bought a replacement.

Just because I'm so proud of this little jug. I picked it up in a charity shop in Swansea where a friend was working (where I coincidentally bought most of my things from several years before). I don't own a pint glass, they all disappeared over the years, so this is my version.

Just because I’m so proud of this little jug. I picked it up in a charity shop in Swansea where a friend was working (where I coincidentally bought most of my things from several years before). I don’t own a pint glass, they all disappeared over the years, so this is my version.

My lovely lovely cutlery. I originally bought 6 of all items for about £2 from a charity shop before university but over the years my collection has started to diminish. I still have most of it left but nonetheless I am sad for the ones I have lost. This little teaspoon was a gift.

My lovely lovely cutlery. I originally bought 6 of all items for about £2 from a charity shop before university but over the years my collection has started to diminish. I still have most of it left but nonetheless I am sad for the ones I have lost. This little teaspoon was a gift.

Honestly, the tongs are the only thing I use on a regular basis but I refuse to put the others in storage simply because their happy colours make me smile.

Honestly, the tongs are the only thing I use on a regular basis but I refuse to put the others in storage simply because their happy colours make me smile.

An IKEA purchase from my most recent trip. It makes me think of milkshake and bowling alleys. I keep it on my desk because it makes me smile.

An IKEA purchase from my most recent trip. It makes me think of milkshake and bowling alleys. I keep it on my desk because it makes me smile.

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