Dining Mid-Century Dish Exhibit in Ann Arbor

Posted on May 24 2017 - 3:41am by RetroRuth

This week I am bringing you something a bit different! On Mother’s Day weekend I was lucky enough to be able to go to the Mid-Century dinnerware exhibit in Ann Arbor, Michigan that was put on by The Dinnerware Museum. It was an adorable little exhibit that was in a great venue, and since most of you probably didn’t attend, I thought I would bring the exhibit to you.


Some childrens’s Russel Wright, anyone?


Here is Tom chatting it up with one of The Dinnerware Museum owners. They were lovely people and very knowledgeable.

Apparently the space they held the exhibit in was a mid-century addition to the much older main bed and breakfast, The Stone Chalet. The addition was used as a church for a long time. It still had a lot of the mid-century architectural details and was lovely.

But, onto the dishes!


This napkin display girl is now part of my dreams!



No Mid-Century dinnerware exhibit would be complete without some Melmac! This is Regatta. WP_20170513_12_52_45_ProWP_20170513_12_52_54_Pro

Here’s a bit of Russel Wright for adults! Set on a Heywood Wakefield dining set, so pretty much perfection.WP_20170513_12_53_05_Pro

Another angle, because why not?



Libbey glasses! I love these guys.


These adorable cruets? pitchers? carafes? were marked unknown manufacturer. If anyone has a clue about these, I’m sure The Dinnerware Museum would love to know!




Another cute setting. TV dinner!


Steubenville Pottery. This would be absolutely perfect in my kitchen!




This poodle set by Glidden is perfect!


And, to leave you, a perfectly perfect Mid-Century picnic!

Overall, the exhibit was a little one, but it had so many great pieces and designers and in such a great location that I was very impressed. When I spoke with the owners, they said they are looking for a physical building for the museum, so be sure to visit their site and support the museum if you can, or feel free to drop them a line if you have a suggestion for permanent display space for them.

I’m looking forward to their next exhibit!

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I love everything retro, vintage, mid-century, kitsch and all things atomic! A 21st century housewife just trying to fit in...to the 50's. I have a passion for vintage recipes and an enormous vintage cookbook collection that I keep testing, even though by now I should know better. Creator of Mid-Century Menu (www.midcenturymenu.com), No Pattern Required (www.nopatternrequired.com), and I Ate The 80's (www.iatethe80s.com).

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13 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Andrea May 24, 2017 at 10:10 am - Reply

    Gorgeous dishware, wow! The kids sets are really adorable. Surprised at there not being any Pyrex, though!

  2. Max May 24, 2017 at 1:14 pm - Reply

    Wow! Thank you! I really enjoy visiting your website. Just had to comment on that Melmac Regatta. Beautiful!

  3. Susan May 24, 2017 at 5:48 pm - Reply

    Wait til Sara sees those Poodle dishes! I wonder her reaction, given her poodle bathroom that is perfection.

  4. Marnie May 24, 2017 at 10:46 pm - Reply

    Thanks for sharing, so those of us far off on the other side of the continent could enjoy 🙂

  5. Laurinda May 24, 2017 at 11:33 pm - Reply

    That IS a cool museum! I too am on the wrong side of the continent to enjoy it. At least I can console myself with my own Fire King Davey Crockett mug (it’s the perfect size for an espresso)

  6. Sara In AZ May 25, 2017 at 10:10 am - Reply

    OH MY GOD……the POODLES!!!! Dying over here!!!!! LOVE that!!!!! EEeeeEEeeEEeeeeeEEeeee!!!!!!

    Yes, you are right Susan….I am a poodle maniac! 🙂

  7. Sue May 25, 2017 at 1:23 pm - Reply

    I saw one of those napkin display girls just last weekend in an antique shop!

  8. Poppy May 25, 2017 at 6:01 pm - Reply

    My grandma had the Regatta Melmac. I thought it was so cool when I was a kid, but I forgot about it until now. (I also felt so cool as an ’80s kid knowing that Alf’s home planet was named after dishes.)

  9. Marty May 28, 2017 at 12:00 am - Reply

    This is SO COOL! Thank you for sharing. I’m ready to travel to MI now!

    The white dishes above the poodle plate picture look a lot like an Eva Zeisel design. I have my mom’s Zeisel dishes and I love them, even though they’re a little on the fragile side.

  10. Stuart Miller May 28, 2017 at 5:48 pm - Reply

    As someone who has re-read “China and Glass in America 1880-1980: From Tabletop to TV Tray” often enough to break the book’s spine, I was delighted to learn about this new museum. Thank you!

  11. Maureen June 10, 2017 at 5:02 pm - Reply

    What a great post! Every picture is a delight, thanks for sharing!

  12. Amanda July 17, 2017 at 7:03 am - Reply

    I just LOVE the flatware! Thank you so much for sharing!

  13. George August 18, 2017 at 9:19 pm - Reply

    My Mother has the same cute napkin doll. We use it every year during her birthday!

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