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Unique Plate Wall Decor: Vintage Style Display Ideas

Have you ever created a wall hanging plate display? If you are looking for unique plate wall decor ideas, you will love how this blue and white plate wall came together. A vintage plate wall is a beautiful and creative way to add a touch of personality and history to your home. However, I went and threw a vintage basket into the mix. If you like out-of-the-box decor choices, you will love this guide to decorating plates on the walls with a unique vintage-style.

I have been collecting vintage blue and white dishes to create a plate wall display behind my dining table. I had just about found what I needed when I purchased a vintage French grape hod basket. It was love at first sight and I wanted to display immediately. But where? Once I had the basket home, I decided to combine it with the vintage plate wall. Wait until you see how it came together. I love it and I know you will too.

Thrifted Wall Hanging Plates to create vintage plate wall decor.

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Where To Find Vintage Plates for Plate Wall Decor?

I have several blue and white dishes and platters but had never considered using them for plate wall decor. However, after creating a Chinoiserie-style tablescape, I felt drawn to creating a wall hanging vintage plate display. I began to look for unique pieces to use for the display. It’s much easier to find individual plates and platters than to find complete sets. In addition, when a set is broken up, the individual pieces will usually be less expensive.

Here are the best places to shop for great deals.

  • Thrift Store
  • Yard Sales
  • Consignment Stores
  • Antique Shops
  • Flea Markets
  • Online shopping at Etsy and eBay.

Thrifting for Plates

First, determine what your plate theme will be. I decided on blue and white plates. However, you can use a color theme, a combination of colors, or maybe all platters. Just have a general idea of what you are looking for before heading to the thrift stores.

I don’t know if it’s fate or what, but when I’m thrifting for something specific, I get really lucky. Maybe it’s just that now these items are on my radar, and before, I couldn’t see them. Either way, my first thrift store stop was this Oval Countryside Wedgewood Platter, dated 1962. I knew it would be perfect for the vintage plate wall.

A few days later, I was in a consignment shop and found these two Countryside Wedgewood Dinner plates. Yep! I was on a roll, and it was meant to be. I said I didn’t want a matching set, but I could live with decorating 3 similar plates on the wall.

Next, I found this great vintage oyster plate in my favorite consignment shop in Wilmington, Ivy Cottage. Along the way, I found several smaller dishes and unique pieces for prices like 50 cents or $1.00 that are perfect for wall hanging plates.

When planning your plate wall decor, you may find that you need more than you anticipate, so it’s recommended that you pick up a few extra plates. However, only if the price is right.

The Thing That Changed The Plate Wall Display

I was collecting blue and white plates all over town when this happened. I found this French grape hod gathering basket and needed to find a place to display it. This beauty would not be hidden away in a closet.

It’s perfect for a wall display but not just anywhere will accommodate it. So, guess what I did? I hung it right in the center of my dining room wall. At first, I thought my plan for a plate wall display was over, but no, I could make this work. So here’s what I did.

French Grape Hod gathering basket for wall display

How To Hang Plate Wall Decor

First, you need a center point or focal point for your wall hanging plate. This could be a large platter or maybe a cluster of several small plates together. Then, you want to work out from that point.

My focal point is the vintage basket, which takes up a bit of space.

As you plan your display, you don’t want to drive a million nails into your wall, so here’s what to do.

Make A Template Of Your Dishes

Begin by tracing all your dishes onto kraft paper. Then, cut each plate out of the paper and use tape to place the paper dish on your wall. This way, you can arrange and rearrange the display to your liking.

Template for dishes

Add Plate Hangers

Before you begin decorating plates on the wall and driving nails, you need to determine what type of plate hangers you plan to use.

There are several options, but I prefer to use metal wire hangers for my vintage dishes. I purchased this 12-pack plate hanger set because it includes 3 sizes.

I’ve used the stick-on style in the past, but I don’t trust my valuable vintage dishes with it. They don’t feel as secure.

Go ahead and add the hangers to the plates to ensure proper fit and position.

wire plate hangers

Decorating With Plates On The Wall

Now, you can mark each template with the exact location for the hanger and nail. This will ensure that the nail is properly placed and the plates are exactly where you want them.

Begin decorating with plates on the wall by adding your larger pieces first. You may find that you want to rearrange some of the smaller pieces as you go along. Be sure to step back and analyze your work as you go to be sure it’s still the arrangement you feel comfortable with.

add blue and white dish to the plate wall display.

Add More Texture

As I was coming to the end of my blue and white vintage wall hanging plate display, I felt the basket needed some help to balance the texture of the items on the wall. Although I had planned to only decorate with plates, I went and threw a basket into the mix. But I can fix this.

The dishes were all light and airy next to the vintage basket.

The first thing I did was add some light color faux flowers. This immediately helped soften the basket. However, something was still missing. I still needed more texture around the basket.

To accomplish this, I used three wooden serving boards that I was currently displaying on the adjacent plate rack. Instead of nails, I used Velco command strips to attach the boards to the wall. The serving boards didn’t work well with the plate hangers, and I had plenty of command strips at the ready.

The wall came together quickly, and I was so happy that I decided to add a quick tablescape to celebrate the new plate wall.

adding plate to vintage plate wall.

Tablescape To Compliment The New Plate Wall

For me, it was all about the texture. I began with a thrifted basket centerpiece filled with moss decor and faux artichokes on a rustic vintage cheese board.

basket centerpiece on dining room table with moss and artichoke decor.

Next, I added a basket plate to the center of each dinner plate. To top it off, I used thrifted dessert plates with blue napkins. Plus, a mix of thrifted candlesticks with blue and white candles.

Decorate dining room wall with plate wall decor and vintage basket beside the farmhouse table.

Hanging Plate Wall

The plate wall decor is beyond my expectations. Adding the vintage basket created a challenge, but I can’t imagine the vintage plate wall display without it.

Decorate dining room wall with wall hanging plates and vintage basket beside the farmhouse table.

When planning to decorate with plates on a wall, always consider the surrounding areas. Add touches to pull the entire space together like I did with the tablescape. Notice the blue and white plates on the wall rack above the wall hanging plates and the blue and white topiary container in the corner.

I like it so much I got carried away snapping photos from every angle. LOL

basket centerpiece with moss and artichoke decor for decorating with plates on wall of farmhouse dining room.

I hope today’s vintage plate wall ideas will help you to think creatively and that you picked up some tips for planning your own plate decor wall.

Blue and white vintage wall hanging plates with vintage basket and old chippy bench at farmhouse table

If. you want to start out small with plate wall decor, consider using vintage picture frames to display vintage plates. See 19 Ways To Upcycle Old Picture Frames for more details.

blue and white plates in vintage picture frame.

Pin It To Remember It

Did you find some great ideas you’d like to save for future reference? To save, hover over the images and pin to your favorite Pinterest Boards when you see the PIN button in the upper left-hand corner.

Step by step guide to creating a unique plate wall decor with vintage plates and baskets

Cindy McManus

Monday 13th of May 2024

Love the basket!!! Would you mind sharing where you thrifted it?


Tuesday 14th of May 2024

Cindy, I found it at The French Farmer's Wife final barn sale.

Mary from Life at Bella Terra

Sunday 12th of May 2024

Rachel, what a timely post. I am gathering items to make a plate/antler wall grouping at our cabin. I love the idea of cutting out templates first. And it's time to start collecting more plates. I do have a large blue/white vintage platter but not much else. Thanks for the inspiration.


Monday 13th of May 2024

Mary, I'm so glad you found this helpful. Good luck on the hunt.


Saturday 11th of May 2024

Love the basket and wood accents with the plates - the basket is going to make it all so versatile as you "dress" it seasonally! Sitting there I would feel transported to the French countryside!


Sunday 12th of May 2024

Paula, Wow, what a great compliment. I appreciate your sweet encouragement. I appreciate you for stopping by.


Saturday 11th of May 2024

I love your plate wall! The cute basket adds so much.


Sunday 12th of May 2024

Pat, Thank you so much. I'm so glad you like it.


Saturday 11th of May 2024

I love your plate wall! The cute basket is perfect


Sunday 12th of May 2024

Thank you Pat.