Gibson Elite’s Black Sand Terra Cotta 16 piece dinnerware set features a contemporary matte speckled glaze on terra cotta. The combination is terrific because the terra cotta edges beautifully accent the premium reactive glaze. Reactive glazes produce different effects not only from piece to piece but with different ceramic materials. In this case, the matte black produces modern matte speckles that also accent the base glaze.
The shape of this dinnerware is also different. Instead of round or square the dinner and dessert plates have soft bowl edges.
This is a complete setting for four and includes mugs, dinner plates, salad plates and soup bowls, all made from durable terra cotta and glazed in a unique matte reactive glaze.
Reactive glazes are made specifically to create varied effects so each plate, bowl or mug will be a little different. Also please do not expect perfection. By their very nature, reactive glazes are difficult to control unlike your fine bone china. So enjoy the unique qualities of your Gibson Elite reactive glazed dinnerware.
Gibson Elite Black Sand 16 Piece Terra Cotta Dinnerware Set Specifications
Color: Matte Black Sand
Material: Terra Cotta
Number of Pieces: 16 and includes four dinner plates, soup bowls, salad plates and mugs
We are consumers as well as an online retailer so our goal is no less than what we expect as consumers. You must be completely satisfied with your purchase. We take pride in the quality of the products we sell and offering great customer service is our top priority. If you are not completely satisfied with your purchase, please follow the guidelines detailed below and we will be happy to help you return your purchase.
As soon as possible open and inspect your order to confirm the correct items were shipped and they are in good condition. If there are any damages please report them immediately so we can file a timely claim with our carrier. Call Customer Service at 1-800-367-5644 or send us an email to [email protected]
Merchandise can be returned within 30 days of purchase. Refunds will be issued to the original form of payment (credit card, Pay Pal, etc.). The original shipping charges will be deducted from the refund unless the return is the result of an error by Plum Street Pottery or the product is defective. Please note bundled items need to be returned with all components for a full refund.
Keep the original packaging until you are sure you are keeping your order. All returns must be made in the original packaging with the original packaging materials.
By UPS, USPS
All returns need to be sent to Plum Street Pottery 600 Plum St. Trenton, NJ 08638.
• Credit will be issued at the time the merchandise is received in good condition in our warehouse unless the return is due to a manufacturing defect.
Preparing your Return
• Note the reason for the return on the packing list and place it in the original carton with the product.
• Pack the item carefully in the original packaging.
• Print your return label at…..Plum Street Pottery No-Hassle Returns.
• Affix the returns label over the top of the original shipping label. Keep a copy of the tracking number on this label for future reference.
• Bring the package to any UPS or USPS location near you.
*Please note that, depending on the form of payment tendered, it may take 2-10 business days after your credit is applied for it to post to your account.
Easy Return Policy Exceptions
Damaged Items and Shortage Claims: Any damaged or missing items must be reported to Customer Support within 10 days of delivery by calling 1-800-367-5644. The sooner we are notified the sooner we can file a claim with the carrier. Thank you!
• Special order returns are subject to 15% restocking fee. Cancellations may be subject to 15% restocking fee.
• Plum Street Pottery reserves the right to limit or refuse to accept the return of merchandise at any time and for any reason.
The Plum Street Pottery dinnerware buying guide is a must read for those just starting out. Make the choice that works best for you!
Place Setting for One
Dinnerware is often sold as individual place settings—all the pieces you’d need for a single person’s seat at the table. The most common is a 4-piece place setting that includes a dinner plate, salad plate, soup bowl and a mug. A popular and versatile option is adding a second small all-purpose, also referred to as a rice bowl or fruit bowl, to create a 5-piece place setting which works equally well for ice cream, fruit, rice, pudding and gelato. Four (4) four piece place settings equal a 16-piece dinnerware set and four (4) five piece place settings equal a 20-piece dinnerware set.
Dinner Plate: The dinner plate needs to be generously sized for a protein (meat/fish), a starch (potatoes, rice, couscous) and a vegetable. The typical dinner plate ranges from 10 to 11 inches and is perfect for any main course meal. Another consideration when deciding on the size of the plate is the dishwasher. The larger the plate the more difficult it will be to keep the plates from tipping over.
Dinner plates are available in a variety of shapes … the traditional round coupe, round rimmed, square and soft square. The dinner plate shown below is the 11 inch round rimmed Noritake Colorwave Raspberry.
Salad Plate: The salad plate generally ranges from 4 to 8 inches and is a terrific dessert plate as well. The salad plate is not only the ideal size for salads and desserts, it is also handy for the casual breakfast muffins and croissants or your favorite sandwich at lunchtime. Salad plates are also available in the same variety of shapes as the dinner plates. The Denby Heritage Terrace 8 Inch Accent Saladshown below is a great example of a functional salad plate and a beautiful accent for your table.
Soup / Cereal Bowl: The soup/cereal bowl will be one of the most used dinnerware items in your cabinet. Many manfacturers call it an All-Purpose bowl for good reason. It will handle a lot more than soup including chili, stews, rice, pasta, oatmeal, fresh fruit and salads just to name a few. The Dansk Bistro Christianshavn Blue All-Purpose Bowl holds a generous 24 ounces and is a perfect example of the ultimate in versatility and design.
Mugs: Save your cups and saucers for formal dinners. Today’s casual dinnerware designs feature generously sized mugs of 8 to 16 ounces. All mugs hold coffee, tea, hot chocolate and broth. The larger 16 ounce mugs are also great for your favorite soup. The Spice Cayenne Red 12 3/4 ounce mugis part of D&V Fortessa Spice Collection that includes Cilantro Green and Saffron Yellow. Spice is designed to mix and match any or all of the three coordinating colors.
Small All-Purpose Bowl:
One item often overlooked is the small all-purpose bowl. Like its bigger brother the soup bowl it is equally versatile but will hold smaller amounts. The bowls will run from 4-inch mini bowls and 5 inch rice bowls to 21 ounce small-all purpose bowls. The addition of this bowl makes a very popular 5-piece place setting. The 16 ounce French Perle Fruit Bowlis a great example.
A single set of dinnerware is made up of multiple place settings. The most common are 16- and 20-piece sets, which offer service for four. What’s in them? The 16-piece set includes four each of the dinner plate, salad plate, soup bowl and a mug. The 20-piece set typically includes a small all-purpose bowl that is used for rice, ice cream and gelato . Gibson Elite Cafe Versailles 20-Piece Dinnerware Setis an excellent example of a 20-piece dinnerware set that includes an extra small all-purpose bowl.
Open Stock Dinnerware
Last but not least, any dinnerware buying guide must review the ultimate in customization. Open stock dinnerware allows you to pick and choose exactly which dishes, plates and mugs you want and need. Sometimes they are sold as a mix-and-match collection; you can choose from coordinating designs and colors within the same pattern. A great example of open stock mix-and-match dishes is the Spice Collection from D&V Fortessa. There are four Spice colors, Cayenne, Cilantro, Saffron and Salt. In addition, Spice has roundand squaredishes so you can not only mix colors but you can mix shapes.
No dinnerware buying guide would be complete without discussing the dinnerware materials. Every dinnerware material has its advantages and disadvantages. For a complete review visit the Plum Street Pottery Dinnerware Materialspage.
Please be sure to send us a comment if we missed or overlooked any information that should be covered in our Dinnerware Buying Guide!
Dinnerware materials and glazes vary widely so use our dinnerware materials buying guide to help decide not only what dinnerware material and glaze you want and need but what you should expect from each.
Of all the dinnerware materials earthenware is the least expensive. The earthenware clays are typically locally sourced and unrefined. Earthenware dinnerware, however, is susceptible to chippingso handle with care particularly in the dishwasher. Earthenware is kiln fired at relatively low temperatures in the range of 1900° to 2000°F (1037° to 1093°C) and is not vitrified or impermeable.
Once earthenware dinnerware has been bisque fired beautiful decorative patterns are painted, glazed and kiln fired again to provide an impermeable surface.
Earthenware dishes are microwave for reheating only and dishwasher safe. Do not place on a direct burner or in your oven.
As a rule earthenware will be you most economical dishes. They are kiln fired at much lower temperatures so the fuel costs are lower and the raw material costs are lower because the clay is usually locally produced and unrefined.
Through the years many early artisans used Terracottato make not only dishes and bowls but intricate sculptures including the famous Terracotta Armyof Emperor Qin Shi Huang, 209–210 BC.
The word Terracotta is Italian for “cooked earth”. The lovely color comes from the naturally occurring iron oxide in the clays.
Terracotta as a dinnerware material should be handled with care, particularly, in the dishwasher where most chips occur. Be sure to carefully space your dishes from each other. In particular, they must not come in contact with metal pots and pans.
Similar to stoneware dinnerware, terracotta dinnerware is microwave safe for reheating and dishwasher safe.
Impermeable and true to its name, stoneware wears like stone. Stoneware dinnerware is made from clay that will vary depending on the location of the mine. Stoneware clay is usually not as refined as porcelain clays and as a result has more impurities. Stoneware dinnerware is kiln fired at temperatures in the range of 2012°F to 2372°F (1100° to 1300°C). A variety of decorative glazes are applied adding color and beauty to its tough durability.
Stoneware is chip resistant, dishwasher safe. However, be careful when filling your dishwasher. Do not let the stoneware dishes bang against each or other hard objects.
It is also microwave safe to reheat only. Microwave ovens cook food quickly because they direct a lot of energy in a short period of time to your food and plate. Be careful to reheat your food only, this will greatly extend the life of your stoneware dinnerware. Do not place directly on a burner or in your oven.
Stoneware costs more to produce then earthenware mainly because of the higher kiln temperatures. The higher temperatures fuse the dinnerware making it more durable but at a price. The clays are locally sourced but of higher quality with fewer contaminants.
Porcelain is kiln fired at substantially higher temperatures of approximately 2500°F (1371°C) making it the most durable, chip and scratch resistant material for your casual dishes. Your porcelain place settings can be used everyday and look as good today as a year from now.
Porcelain dinnerware is microwave, dishwasher, freezer and oven safe to 350 degrees. It can be placed in your freezer but do not move your porcelain directly from the freezer to the oven; it will crack!
Porcelain and then fine china are the most expensive to produce. The clays are highly refined to remove all the contaminants like iron. Porcelain is kiln fired at even higher kiln temperatures and produces dense, white, chip and scratch resistant dinnerware.
Formal china for your special occasions has similar characteristics to porcelain except for the addition of bone ash. Bone ash china or bone china is more translucent then porcelain.
Fine china is microwave, dishwasher, freezer and oven safe to 350 degrees. It can be placed in your freezer but it is not freezer to oven proof; it will crack! However, we do not recommend using your fine china for anything but serving your guests.
Now that you know the advantages and disadvantages of the different dinnerware materials you can decide which one is best for you!
The real beauty of modern casual dinnerware comes from their glazes. Each manufacturer has their own “secret sauce” that they closely guard. For example, Denbyalone has over 5,000 glaze formulations which gives you an idea of the breadth of glazes available.
All base glazes contain clays, silica, kaolin, feldspar and alumina in different proportions depending on the kiln temperatures and the desired effects.
Traditional fine bone china typically has a high gloss semi-transparent glaze applied to the fine china body. The china body imparts a warmth to the high gloss. Since bone china is kiln fired at high temperatures, the glaze is tough, durable and resists scratches and the annoying nickel streaks left from your stainless steel utensils.
Porcelain glazes are as durable as fine bone china but as a rule are opaque.
Matte or Satin
Matte or satin glazes contain similar raw materials as gloss glazes except in different proportions so instead of producing a gloss finish produce a crystalline surface. The matte or satin glazes are homogeneous and typically are very uniform in color and texture.
Good examples are the new Gibson Home Soho Lounge Matte Black, Brick, Grey and Taupe. Noritake is famous for theirColorwavedinnerware. Noritake Colorwave is available in many colors including spruce, raspberry, graphite, turquoise, blue and chocolate.
Reactive glazes are a combination of ceramic materials that produce a chemical reaction when kiln fired. The reaction is part science but also greatly depends on the talents and imagination of the artist or engineer. The glazes are not homogeneous and often produce a two-tone varied effect particularly when the manufacture uses multiple layers of glaze.
Since the ceramic materials are naturally occurring they are not exactly the same batch to batch and lot to lot so the effects will vary which is part of the beauty of reactive glazes. The reactions will also vary depending on the thickness of the glaze, layers of different glazes, firing temperature and body. The variations and uniqueness of each dinnerware piece needs to be expected, appreciated.
Excellent examples of reactive glazes are Gibson Elite’sAltea Red. Althea Red has a soft beige reactive glaze with red and teal geometric accents.
As consumers, we always look for stimulating designs and colors. Modern dinnerware provides that stimulation in an endless array of colors, shapes and textures.
Once you have decided on the dinnerware materials, your next big decision is what’s for dinner.