Millennials Are Saying ‘No’ To Fine China
If you're headed to your millennial son, daughter, niece or nephew's house for the holiday family party this year, you shouldn't bet on eating off a fancy china set.
What was once considered a family heirloom is now on the list of least desirable family hand-me-downs. Why is this even relevant? My great aunt passed away earlier this year. I was invited up to her house this weekend to look through some of her things to see if I wanted to claim anything before it went to the estate sale or was donated.
I walked away with a few practical pieces like pots and pans, Pyrex dishes, a mirror, but most notably, her complete set of beautiful fine china. I felt awful when I saw it and thought to myself "Do I really want this?" To be honest, I didn't want it at first. I didn't even know why I had no desire to claim it. I remember growing up eating off my grandparents and various family members' beautiful china sets, however, it was never something I ever desired to acquire as an adult. I know that fine china is usually given in pieces, normally as wedding shower gifts. But, I've been in quite a few weddings so far in my twenties and nobody has ever even registered for a china set, let alone received a set in pieces from various family members.
I decided that I actually did want the china set after all because one, I'd never be able to afford one that beautiful on my own and two, I don't really have any family heirlooms of value that I'd want to pass down to any children that may be in my future.
I did a little research and realized that my initial indifference to the china set wasn't subjective. As it turns out, most millennials couldn't care less about fine china. In fact, they'd much rather spend their money on practical household items rather than pieces that sit in a hutch for the majority of their lifetime. Also, when it comes to accepting them from older family members, most millennials are more likely to decline the offer.
Can't say that I blame that way of thinking. I never would've bought it for myself. If I were getting married, I definitely wouldn't have included it on my registry. However, when push comes to shove, I've proven that at least this millennial can't deny the emotional value the china set holds.
Bottom line, if you're hoping your kids take grandma's fine china, make sure you emphasize how much she wanted them to have it. We're more likely to accept it based on family ties rather than the value of the pieces themselves.