[What you need to know] Types of sizes of Japanese tableware and utensils and how to use them

When you are looking for a pottery, have you ever seen the word "〇Size" displayed along with the
product name?

For example, "Mino ware 7-sun plate with cut marks".

In this case, Mino ware is the production area, the cut marks are the product name, and
7 sun is the size of the plate.

In this way, especially for Japanese tableware,
even now, the size of the vessel is often expressed in units of ``sun'' rather than ``centimeters.''

This unit of ``sun'', which is not very familiar in modern times, is a unit of shakukan method that has been used for a long time.
It uses the human body to measure size (length). This is the expressed unit.

1 sun is approximately 3.03 centimeters.

This is about the length of your thumb,
1/10 of 1 shaku.

By the way, 1 shaku is 30.303 cm.
Equivalent to the length from the fingertips to the elbow.

Because it is a unit based on the human body,
it may be perfect for determining the size of things that people use.

That's why even today, makers still make pottery based on this unit.

Here we will introduce the basic sizes of Japanese tableware.

If you remember that 1 sun is approximately 3 cm,
when you are looking for Japanese tableware that will go well with your meal,
I think it will be easier to imagine using it at the dining table.

I don't know which one to buy!
For those who say, first of all,

7-inch plate as main dish, 5-inch plate as serving plate

I think it would be a good idea to buy more


From there,
increase the number of small plates,
buy additional 6-inch plates between 7-inch and 5-inch plates,
square plates that are not round, and flower rings with gorgeous edges. Why not increase it by buying more plates?

<3-inch plate>

A 3-sun plate is a small plate of approximately 9 cm.
Commonly known as a bean plate.

This size is often called a bean plate.

A 3-inch plate that can be used for soy sauce for sashimi, condiments for soba noodles, and small snacks.

If you put it all together on a large plate or tray, why not arrange side dishes little by little and try coordinating small plates?

Rather than using the same color and pattern, it is more colorful and fun to combine different colors, patterns, and textures.


<4-inch plate>

A 4-sun plate is a small plate approximately 12 cm long.

The 4-inch plate is convenient for placing side dishes such as dipping sauce and kinpira burdock, and small pieces of sweets and fruits during snack time.

The size is easy to use as a serving plate for side dishes, etc.

suzukaze.higashida (Instagram)

<5-inch plate>

A 5-sun plate is a medium-sized plate of approximately 15 cm.

Not only can it be used as a serving plate for main dishes, but it is also a convenient size for placing cakes, rolls, etc.

This size is often used for breakfast and snack time.

From shocolate.0127 (Instagram)

<6-inch plate>

The 6-sun plate is a medium plate of approximately 18 cm.

It's a slightly larger serving plate, and it's the perfect size to place a piece of bread on.

Perfect for serving with a green salad full of leafy vegetables such as lettuce and mizuna at mealtimes.

From jonyde.love (instagram)

<7-inch plate>

The 7-sun plate is a medium plate of approximately 21 cm.

The 7-inch plate is the perfect size as a main dish.

Suitable for serving single dishes such as pasta and fried rice.

From sorezorenogohan (instagram)

<8-inch plate>

An 8-sun plate is a large plate that is approximately 24 cm.

An 8-sun plate is a large plate that is approximately 24 cm.

Use it as a main dish plate, or make it into one plate with rice, main dish, and salad.

It is often used to accompany dishes such as salmon meuniere, croquettes, pork saute, etc. with vegetables as an accompaniment to the main dish.

Depending on the rise and width of the rim, it is also ideal for one-plate style, where you can add various side dishes little by little.

From naana.5.7 (Instagram)

<9-inch plate>

A 9-inch plate is a large plate approximately 27 cm long.

This is also a plate suitable for putting main dishes on.

Not only can you use it as a plate for one person, but you can also serve it with meat dishes such as spare ribs and wagyu steak, or serve it with pizza or paella and share it with your partner.

It is large enough to be placed in the middle of the table setting as the centerpiece of the party.

Quoted from keiko_ovv (Instagram)


So far, we have introduced the size of utensils and their uses.

If you don't know which one to buy,
as I introduced at the beginning,

In the case of a plate,

7-inch plate as main plate, 5-inch plate as serving plate

In the case of a pot,

4-inch bowl as a tray, 6-inch bowl as the main serving bowl.

is recommended.

Once you have the basic sizes,
try to choose something a little more unique,
try adding more pottery with different colors and textures, etc.
Create your own favorite
table. Try to find the coordination!

Written by: Uchill, a pottery market to enjoy at home