In the mansion I built in my mind when I was a child, these were the dishes I used at my long dining table:
And for a snack or small meal, enough variety for everyone to choose which scene he liked best:
The whole house had a somewhat genteel, fox-hunty feel, designed to be at once comforting and stimulating, with here and there a satirical twist in a painting or child’s toy or the arrangement of some small corner. I am thinking of a painting I clipped from a magazine while in grade school, depicting an elegant dinner, peopled by foxes. On the wall behind a very proper-looking fox couple, absorbed in conversation, hung a mounted hound’s head. I laughed until I choked.
Then, when as a teen I met my husband, and it quickly became apparent that he was a hunting enthusiast, not limited to a particular species, this china pattern seemed like the only obvious choice. Now, of course, I have broadened my horizons a bit, but I still admire these dishes, and find they satisfy my sense of beauty. Acquiring a set is on my Someday-When-I’m-Prosperous list. Not sure where I’m going to put them, since the mansion isn’t built yet. A glass-fronted case for dust-free storage of said dishes is on that same list.