How to Grind & Polish Broken China Dishes

Polish broken china for craft projects.
Polish broken china for craft projects. (Image: broken china image by Luisafer from

Everyone has broken china dishes at some point. Perhaps the dish was a one-dollar purchase from a yard sale or maybe it was a piece of your wedding china. Either way, you don’t have to throw away the bits. If you can’t find all the pieces to glue the dish back together, you can transform the pieces into jewelry or mosaics. This allows you to keep special or pretty pieces. However, you must polish and grind the edges first to prevent injury.

Things You'll Need

  • China pieces
  • Leather gloves
  • Safety glasses
  • Hand-held rotary tool
  • Coarse, medium and fine sanding discs

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Spread out your china pieces on a flat, clean surface. Make sure you can see all of them and have enough room to rearrange them continuously. Put on your leather gloves before handling the pieces; gardening gloves work well. Wear safety glasses to protect your eyes.

Snap a coarse sanding disc into place on your hand-held rotary tool. Hold a large piece of china firmly in your gloved hand and set the spinning disc gently against the edges. Move the disc back and forth over the edges in a horizontal motion to bevel them.

Turn the piece and repeat step 2 until all of the edges are beveled and rounded. If shaping the piece, keep sanding until the piece is rounded into the desired shape instead of simply smoothing the edges.

Switch to a medium sanding disc and run it over the piece’s edges to smooth away grinding marks from the coarse disc. Repeat with a fine disc to give the edges a high polish.

Tips & Warnings

  • Don't push down on the edges with your tool; holding it firmly against the china works well. Pushing too hard slows down the tool and may snap the china piece.


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