Tiffany Carousel set

Object of desire The Tiffany Carousel children's china set is delicately drawn with just the right hint of nostalgia, and would suit either a boy or girl.

July 25, 2010/ Abu Dhabi/Object of Desire  children's  dishes  July 25, 2010. (Sammy Dallal / The National)

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Among the special presents my daughter received when she was christened was a lovely set of child-sized china (a plate, bowl and mug) decorated with pictures of traditional toys, given by one of her godmothers. I knew it was going to be special when I saw the packaging: a robin's-egg blue box tied in a wide white satin ribbon. It could only have come from Tiffany's. The china was - still is - precious (intrinsically and for its sentimental value) but I was determined not to be "precious" about it. We used it almost daily until my daughter grew out of it, at which point it went into her "special box" for posterity.

Over the years it became our little tradition to give similar sets of Tiffany china when close friends had babies - and their delight has been just as great as ours. The "toys" pattern has long since been discontinued but its replacements have been no less delightful. Take the current pattern, called Carousel - delicately drawn with just the right hint of nostalgia, it would suit either a boy or girl baby.

Tiffany & Co has it specially made in Japan, a country with a long tradition of making the porcelain of the highest quality. As for that "blue box" moment when you receive something bought at Tiffany's - it's always special, regardless of what's inside the box. The colour has become so strongly linked with the New York-based jeweller, that it has been trademarked. Although, for that reason, it doesn't appear in the commercially available Pantone swatch books, it has its own Pantone number, 1837 - the year that Tiffany & Co was founded.

Meanwhile, my daughter, now a teenager, still occasionally digs into her "special box": to remind herself what's there. And every time, she says: "It will be so nice when I have children of my own and they can use it." An heirloom in the making. Carousel set Dh571 from Tiffany & Co, Marina Mall Abu Dhabi (02 681 4477) and Abu Dhabi Mall, Mall of the Emirates, BurJuman Centre and Dubai Mall