White cup with a flowers of wild rose on an open old book on a wooden table.

It’s not just Cleopatra that benefitted from a milk bath, your old china tea cup with a small crack in it can really benefit from being bathed in milk.

When dealing with vintage china small cracks are quite a normal discovery, buts instead of just waiting for the day that the small crack develops and inevitably breaks for good, try giving it a milk bath.

The idea is simple. You place your cracked piece in a heavy bottomed pan and cover it with full-fat milk. Next, warm over a very low heat for an hour. Allow the cracked china item to soak in the milk whilst it cools to cool. When the milk is cold remove the china item and rinse in clean water then remove and rinse.

As long as the crack wasn’t too far gone, it should now have resealed itself!

Top Tip

A slow cooker is great device to use for this technique if you don’t want to use a saucepan

How does it work?

The idea is that the protein in the milk expands when heated and fills in the cracks. It then bonds with the surfaces and as it cools bonding the china back together.


About Seren Charrington-Hollins

ABOUT SEREN-CHARRINGTON-HOLLINS Describing my work through just one job title is difficult; because my professional life sees me wear a few hats: Food Historian, period cook, broadcaster, writer and consultant. I have a great passion for social and food history and in addition to researching food history and trends I have also acted as a consultant on domestic life and changes throughout history for a number of International Companies. In addition to being regularly aired on radio stations; I have made a number of television appearances on everything from Sky News through to ITV’s Country House Sunday, Holiday of a Lifetime with Len Goodman , BBC4’s Castle’s Under Siege, BBC South Ration Book Britain; Pubs that Built Britain with Hairy Bikers and BBC 2’s Inside the Factory. Amongst other publications my work has been featured in Period Living Magazine, Telegraph, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail and Great British Food Magazine and I write regularly for a variety of print and online publications. I am very fortunate to be able to undertake work that is also my passion and never tire of researching; recreating historical recipes and researching changing domestic patterns. Feel free to visit my blog, www.serenitykitchen.com