Chinese tea cups are a great item to collect. They are beautifully designed and decorated.
Some are elaborate and even gilded. Others are simple and graceful with an elegance that is hard to find elsewhere.
Learn About Them and Their History
The first Chinese cups that came to Europe were entirely without handles and were meant to be cupped in the hand.
The cups produced in England and in Europe also did not have handles. It wasn't until much later that the first high delicate handles started appearing.
It is interesting to note that they were typically made out of porcelain. In other parts of Asia, they could also be made of stone.
One of the most famous types of cup was the Yixing clay filtering mug.
You will also find that one traditional type of tea cup from China is decorated with calligraphy that describes the four seasons.
Another type is devoted entirely to peony designs from a certain area of China. This later type goes back to the Ming Dynasty and was made small enough to drink from and large enough to actually brew the tea inside.
Take some time to find the designs that appeal to you! What do you like? I like the one without handles because it reminds me of when my family would go out for Chinese food and the cups did not have handles.