The True Cost of Setting the Table

By Fable Staff
Affordable Dinnerware & the True Cost of Setting the Table

When it comes to dinnerware, it's worth having pieces that are premium quality. However, not everyone wants to spend a fortune just to set the table. 

You can stop window shopping for designer home goods and longing for pieces that match your aesthetic. At Fable, we offer high-quality dinnerware at a reasonable cost that fits almost everyone's style. 

You can pass on the cheapest dinnerware and feel good about what you're using in your home.  We will go over the true costs to set the table, what you should look for, and what you should avoid when selecting tableware. 

What Is Dinnerware?

Before weighing the pros and cons of different dinnerware, let's go over what it actually is. 

Dinnerware is not pots and pans or baking dishes. It is all the pieces we use while eating a meal. It includes glassware, plates, bowls, and flatware. 

There are usually dinner plates, small plates, large bowls, small bowls, and glasses or mugs in a typical dinnerware set. Flatware often comes separately, but some dinnerware sets include it.

The idea is that you have enough pieces for complete place settings. 

formal place setting typically includes the following: 

  • Dinner plate, which is 9-11 inches in diameter
  • Small bowl, placed on top of the dinner plate for a first course
  • Small plate, placed above the dinner plate and to the left for bread rolls 
  • Water glass, set on the upper right side
  • Wine glass, set on the outside of the water glass
  • Butterknife, set on the small plate
  • Salad fork, set on the left side of the dinner plate
  • Dinner fork, set to the right of the salad fork 
  • Soup spoon, set on the right side of the dinner plate
  • Dinner knife, set to the left of the soup spoon 
  • Dessert spoon, set horizontally above the dinner plate

Most people do not use formal place settings in their homes, but you may want to consider a few complete place settings if you like to entertain. 

At Fable, we offer a dining essentials set with four place settings. 

What Does Dinnerware Cost? 

Now that we know all that dinnerware includes, let's look at how much these pieces cost. 

The price varies greatly from piece to piece and depends on the type of dinnerware you are purchasing. There is porcelain, bone china, stoneware, and earthenware. There are also different types of plastic tableware. The price can range from just a few dollars to hundreds and even thousands. 

At Fable, we don't believe you should necessarily break the bank to set the table, but we do think dinnerware is worth a small investment. We want our pieces to last and be in your home years after you purchase. To provide excellent products, we require a certain price. When compared to other premium tableware brands, our prices, on the whole, are considerably lower. As a direct-to-consumer brand, we cut out all intermediaries, and deliver those savings to our customers directly.

Fable also believes in full transparency, from how we create our stoneware to the true costs on our end. For example, a set of four Fable dinner plates costs $64. 

Here's how the price breaks down for that particular set: 

  • Materials And Labor: $19.89
  • Freight And Duties: $6.69
  • Shipping: $10.20
  • True Cost: $37.05

The rest of the money goes into running the brand, from designers to customer service representatives. 

Now that you know the cost from the first step of production to the final stages of shipping, we hope you have a better idea of what you're paying for. While there are cheaper options than Fable, we believe our quality for the price is unmatched. 


Why You May Want To Avoid Cheap Dinnerware 

There are a few helpful things to look for when searching for safe dinnerware. All dinnerware is not created equal, and some are made with harmful materials. 

Some manufactures can use materials that contain lead. Lead can be dangerous to people when it enters the bloodstream. Some of the side effects of lead poisoning are overall weakness, anemia, and even brain and kidney damage. 

When you microwave your food on top of a dish with traces of lead, it can seep into your food. Over time, this may result in health problems. Look for brands that label their products lead-free. 

You also can look for products that are microwave safe. If you are unsure whether a product has lead in it or not, try to avoid heating your food on it to prevent the lead-leaching process. You also should avoid consuming acidic food or drinks from dinnerware that you are unsure about since it can pull out the lead in dishes. 

It is worth doing a little extra research to make sure you're keeping yourself and your family safe. At Fable, all of our products are lead-free and non-toxic. 


Caring for Your Dinnerware

If you do invest in your dinnerware, proper care can result in it lasting for years. 

No matter which type of dinnerware you want, we recommend getting dishwasher-safe pieces. This will ensure easy everyday cleanup. No one wants to hand wash dinnerware at the end of a long day. At Fable, all of our products are dishwasher safe, but we do recommend you give your pieces room to shift during the wash cycle. If you overcrowd your dishwasher, it could lead to chipping as your pieces move around when being cleaned.

If you have stoneware, you may also want a Tawashi Brush and some scouring powder. These two products can help you remove any imperfections left from your flatware. Simply make a paste with your scouring powder and water and brush for a few seconds. When you're done, your dinnerware will look good as new. 


Dining in Style

Dinnerware is worth a small investment if you desire to set your table adequately. 

There are many different types of dinnerware to choose from. You can also get individual pieces or complete dinnerware sets. 

While you can find cheap pieces, but they likely won't last long. These types of dinnerware may also have toxic ingredients in them. When purchasing products, look for ones labeled lead-free. 

At Fable, we believe our cost matches the quality, so much so that we are willing to show you what we spend to make our pieces. Our products are one-of-a-kind and will last for years to come. 




The Formal Place Setting | Emily Post

Health Problems Caused by Lead | NIOSH

Scouring powder and paste | Metro