About Us

What we do:

Classic Collegiate China® designs custom quality dinnerware that beautifully demonstrates the owner’s deep connection with a favorite college, university, family, organization or location. We want to recreate the early 1900s use of plates to commemorate special memories. Our goal is to create a quality product that will be passed on to future generations.


Our business history:

Several years ago, I inherited my parents’ beloved set of University of Michigan China. Beautiful, yet functional, these plates were a daily reminder of collegiate times – both theirs and mine. When I learned that the plates were no longer made, I enlisted our son, a ceramics engineer, to help me launch a new line of commemorative plates. Together, with the help of two gifted artists, we have created a new line of collectible dinnerware. Beginning close to home, with the University of Michigan and Michigan State University, we introduced our first plates in 1997. We continue to add new designs to these series, as well as developing several custom designed plates for university units, a North American annual meeting, and a world wide family reunion. The design of a plate commemorating the 175th Anniversary of a local church opened a new market. We have completed several other church plates and a four- piece set of our dinnerware for a U.S. Presidential Library and a full custom set of dinnerware for the Governor’s Mansion in American Samoa. We are truly having fun growing the business while meeting and satisfying new customers. Check out the growing list of satisfied customers.


About our staff:

J. Downs HeroldOur President, or head honcho, is J. Downs Herold, a second-generation alumnus and retired administrator at the University of Michigan. His son, Timothy D. Herold, serves as our ceramics consultant. Vice President, Sondra Herold, could be the one who answers your telephone call, as we are a home-based business selling direct to our web, phone, mail order, and wholesale customers. We are honored to work with artist Tom Osburn of Ann Arbor, Michigan and designer Judith Martin. Former lifelong Michigan natives, Judith and her husband John, moved to central Arizona in 1997. John and Judith have more time to pursue some of their pre-retirement interests in the areas of automotive product design, architectural design and illustration.


What makes us unique:

Classic Collegiate China® believes that informed customers want quality products. We are dedicated to producing safe, beautiful, and very practical and functional plates that can be proudly used on the dinner table or displayed on an office bookshelf. Our dinnerware plates should never be confused with “collectors plates” offered as specials in Sunday magazine ads. You’ll also notice that for custom plates we have no on-line “build your plate” form. Each customer deserves our personal attention and if you got stuck with the Plate Committee assignment, don’t worry, we’re good at hand-holding and providing the advice that you’ll need to order a plate that will make us all proud. We’re a home-based business, so the concept of “regular” business hours actually means, whenever we’re home. Don’t hesitate to call in the evening or weekends. If we’re here, we’ll answer.


Business relationships:

Homer Laughlin China Company

Proud maker of Fiesta Ware® for over 70 years
Homer Laughlin China has been the primary manufacturer of our dinnerware products.
hlchina.com     sales@hlchina.com


W.C. Bunting Company

Buntingware™ A long Respected and Trusted Name
W.C.Bunting produces our commemorative plates and other decorated ceramic products.
wcbunting.com     sterry@wcbunting.com


Replacements, Ltd

We replace the irreplaceable.
Our customers have found them very helpful in finding and replacing china patterns.
replacements.com     info@replacements.com