I’m always swathed in admiration for pals who’ve amassed a seemingly effortless collection of beautiful vintage china pieces on which they serve tea. Even though my sensibilities rest firmly with the contemporary, there’s no doubt a little Rococo swirl-ed cup resting on a rose-embellished plate with a dash of gilding is a very pretty thing indeed. Especially when there’s a biccie involved.

But, does it involve having to scour every second hand market and vintage stall in town? Do you have to go the Etsy route and then worry about your postman breaking the lot?

No, actually, and because it’s sale season, it’s actually a great time to start building your own collection of mismatched pieces. Here are some I dug up you can buy right now. Bottoms up!

Sale time's the right time to start building a collection and you can get some stand-out top-notch pieces for less, like this Wedgewood deco bloom design, €38.40 at Arnotts.

€59.95's the damage for this Candy Mint striped teapot from Avoca.

Heatons, would you believe. Yup, this Moygashel Tea Time Teapot can be purchased there and was €20 - but is now down to €14.

Swap out the saucer with one in a contrast colour and this Moygashel Tea Time Tea Cup And Saucer, now €5.60, won't look quite so old-school and matchy-matchy at all at all.

This Carolyn Donnelly Eclectic jug for Dunnes Stores is ideal for mixing in with patterned pieces and with gilded accents and a €7 pricetag, it's a must-buy.

Another Carolyn Donnelly piece, pastels are perfect and won't fight with florals. This mint sugar bowl is at Dunnes for €4.

Every tatty teaset needs a cake stand. Despite the awfulness of this pic, I'm very fond of willow print's classic ways so am willing to overlook that 'shopped in sparkle and desperate gradient background. This, surprisingly, is from Newbridge, and is part of its Maureen O'Hara collection for €45.

Another pricey pick, this Harlequin polka dot cup and saucer duo by Wedgewood is on sale for €38 at Arnotts.