When does one stop collecting dishes? I can't ever believe there is a point in time when one does. Dishes are a symbol of what we do as women and how we change over time. we take care of others--we cook, clean, and keep house. we all do it, whether we do it well or not. i believe it is an art form. we all keep house-- and dishes reflect what we hold as valuable. Time-worn, distress, chipped, tarnished, mismatched, or never-used. Our plates and platters say something about us.