Travelling Southeast Asia, I've been treated to a lot of melamine. In the UK it may be more common as a durable, smash-proof picnicware but in countries like Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia it's widely used as dinnerware in cafes and restaurants.
|Breakfast: Bali, Indonesia|
|Coffee shop: Chiang Mai, Thailand|
|Matching set: Chau Doc, Vietnam|
|Chinatown: Penang, Malaysia|
Melamine is widely available in SE Asian markets, stacked in teetering rainbow piles. I'd be returning to London with a whole kitchen's worth if I had any room in my backpack!
The good news is that designers back home are joining the party. Orla Kiely has a range of gorgeous melamine dishes, all emblazoned with her iconic patterns.
Plus, it's at really affordable prices - beakers from £5, bowls and plates from £7 - so it's a great value way add a touch of designer chic to your home.