If you're interested in baking or trying out new dishes that require spices and other interesting ingredients, measuring cups and spoons are a big help. Following a recipe correctly and putting in just the right amount can give you the best results, but you can also experiment with different measurements of each ingredient.
There are two main types of measuring cups -- dry cups and liquid cups. Many dry measuring cups are made to stack for easy storage and typically come in sets of four or five, with measurements typically for 1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup, 2/3 cup and 1 cup. This style of measuring cup is meant for dry ingredients, like flour or sugar, since you can easily level them off at the top. Liquid measuring cups are usually larger (coming in a 1-cup or 2-cup size) and are made of clear glass or plastic. They have various measurements marked on the side and a pour spout at the top. These are better for liquids because they don't allow measured liquids to overflow the cup.
Measuring spoons usually parcel out measurements of 1/4 teaspoon, 1/2 teaspoon, 1 teaspoon and 1 tablespoon, but some include a spoon as small as 1/8 teaspoon.