This flea friday post is a little bit like a special edition in the short - it's all about my collection of Soviet plates.
I love that I am able to collect something while on a shoestring budget. The reason I like them is not just about their look.
They are also useful. In fact, every piece in the collection is a working plate - we eat from these every single day. Another reason I find them very easy to collect is that they are dirt cheap and pop up fairly regularly on the shelves of most junkshops and fleamarket stands. As a bonus, they seem to come in many different patterns, but mainly in blue and brown, so a collection of random pieces still looks like a set somehow.
Without exaggeration, I can spot a ZIK plate by a mile (6th sense?), but the easiest way to tell is to look on the bottom for the stamp - a sort of V-shaped pine branch sitting on top of the name ZIK in Cyrillic which reads a bit like 3NK.
From time to time, I try to research the maker and this particular series a bit more, but there's not a lot available online about them. All I know is pretty much from this article: ZIK is a studio of the Konakovo Faience Factory. The company was founded in 1809 and still exists. They produce tableware, figurines and tea sets in faience and utility grade porcelain.
I haven't been able to find any information about these actual plates themselves. The stamp of 'Made in USSR' in English suggests to me that they were made for export. The mighty USSR existed between 1922-1991 - I reckon my plates date from the 60s or 70s; one reference here to a similar looking plate from the 60s seems to confirm that.
That's about my ZIK collection in the short, but what about you? Do you like to collect old things that you can use in everyday life? Or do you prefer to keep your collections out of harms way behind the safe glass of a vitrine?
Sharing on Sir Thrift a Lot, and on Me and My Shadow.