I cannot tell you how happy I was the day I found Replacements, Ltd. For people like me who love beautiful china, this is a fabulous resource company.
Replacements is a valuable resource if you are trying to find retired or antique china patterns. But I especially love the fact that they can identify a pattern for you if you have no idea about the identity. Our stylists here love working with Replacements when they are planning photo shoots and need a specific color or style of teapot or an incredible china pattern that is no longer made.
Enjoy this excerpt from the current issue of TeaTime:
Bob Page has been easing the heartbreak of shattered teacups and misplaced sugar tongs for more than three decades. The founder of Replacements, Ltd., houses an impressive 12 million-piece inventory of 400,000-plus patterns within 500,000 square feet of space. From ornate 19th-century silver tea services, to unpretentious blue-and-white transferware classics, and everything in between, there is no better or more reliable source for heritage china, crystal, and silver than the Greensboro, North Carolina–based company.
Bob never set out to become the world’s largest supplier of old and new tableware—that was a happy accident. As a hobbyist antiques buyer, he used to spend his weekends combing through second-hand stores for treasures to sell on consignment. “I was still working and doing this on the side, and I just lived for the weekends to go to the flea market,” he explains. “I remember when I was a kid, I used to love to go on Easter egg hunts, and this is kind of that adult Easter egg hunt. You never know what you’re going to find!”
As his passion started blossoming into a healthy side business, friends began to ask him to look out for specific china pieces and patterns on his buying trips. Bob found that he had inadvertently stumbled upon a gaping hole in the market—nobody else was specializing in antique dinnerware and replacement pieces on a large scale. Seeing an opportunity to turn his passion into a career, Bob took the leap. “I was working for the state, and we audited health departments. Nobody was glad to see you, so, basically, it was a thankless job. I really just wanted to do something for a living that I thought was fun.”
In 1981, Bob quit his job and officially launched Replacements, Ltd., with just one part-time assistant. Thirty-four years later, he oversees a staff of almost 400 employees. “I never envisioned this would grow like it has or that there would be the demand like we’ve experienced for some of these old patterns,” he says.
Read the rest of the story in the January/February issue of TeaTime.
I’d love to hear any stories you have about replacing favorite teacups, china, crystal or silver. Please share in the comments.