Collecting Yixing Ware

Yixing with pewter
19th-century Yixing ware overlaid with pewter.

“I was spending all my money on the collection. After a while, I realized I needed to refocus on quality, variety, and meaning. But I was still only buying; I wasn’t selling anything.”

When Kingston married, the responsibilities of family life made him realize he needed to part with some of his collection. And he did.

“But at a certain level, selling no longer makes perfect sense. Certain items are so rare and unique, you can’t measure by money, . . . so I trade with other collectors. In a trade, I can get something I value as much as what I’m trading. It’s a process all collectors go through—because you’re always one short. Even today, I’m still one teapot short. But I’m immune to it now. I know how to live with it.”

A lifelong tea drinker, writer, and photographer, Andy Yale owns two Yixing pots and is in the market for a third. He lives in southern Maine.

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