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12 Creative Ways to Display Dishes

Do you have a desire to display your beautiful dishes instead of hiding them in your cupboards? Maybe you inherited family pieces and they are still in a box somewhere because you don’t know what to do with them, or you found some great pieces at a garage sale or thrift store but just aren’t sure where to incorporate them… Never fear! Sarah is here!

Sometimes the hidden pieces you love are like a treasure trove of items just waiting to be used in your home. Let me show you 12 Creative Ways to Display Dishes and let’s see if you can’t start enjoying your own dishes more!

My family on both sides is known for their enormous collection of vintage dishes.  Since I love to host holidays and change out my antique decor all year, I am the first person they think of when they want to pass it on.

If I hadn’t learned to only take pieces I truly loved, I would most certainly be sitting on approximately eight massive sets of fine china. But, it is a wonderful thing to be offered something both sentimental and beautiful when it does happen.

*This post contains affiliate links to products I know and/or love.*

There are really two main ways to use dishes besides their intended purpose:

1) Organizing

2) Decorating

With that in mind, let’s look at some different examples from my house to show you how to incorporate dishes into your own home.

Let’s start with the practical side of things. . .


Number One | Food Storage

I love this little breakfast spot that makes getting nourished in the morning easy for the entire family. This cute little cow pitcher is the perfect compliment for morning cereal and my lidded glass jar holds our oatmeal within easy reach.

Decorating with Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Two | Soap Dishes

No more slippery soap sliding away along the counter top. Whether in your bathroom or kitchen, giving your soap a specific home can be both useful AND cute.

I have a post HERE on how to make your own Farmhouse soap if that’s something you’re interested in trying!

Display Vintage Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Three | Docking Station

I’m certain my great-great grandma never dreamed of dishes being used to house our tiny computers while we sleep at night, but now that that’s a common need, why not do it in an eye-catching way with a cute dish of some kind.

I also love that there’s a spot for my glasses that is easy to see and reach!

How to Display Thrifted Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Four | Extra Shelving

I like to use cloth napkins as hand-towels in our bathrooms, and what better way to store them on the counter-top than in a tiered dessert tray. Easy to see, easy to grab, and easy on the eyes while doing it.

Creative Ways to Display Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Five | Jewelry Storage

Pretty, easily accessible and well contained, these pieces have all that is desired in a jewelry storage system. Plus the combination of dishes and styles that would work well for this task are truly endless!

Display Vintage Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Six | Unsightly Kitchen Needs

You know the type! The things you want for cooking but don’t necessarily want to keep out in the open on the counter. For instance, I keep my fresh garlic in this gravy boat!

Display Vintage Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

And now onto the more whimsical use of dishes. . .


Number Seven | Cuphooks

No one says those coffee mugs HAVE to be shut away in your cabinets. Free up space for other things and display those coffee mugs & tea cups with pride on cup hooks below your cabinetry. I stick with all white for our mugs, but any combination that coordinates nicely with your decor would look great.

Unique Ways to Display Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Eight | Planters

Things like this large soup tureen make for a great plant holder when not in use! I simply drop the entire plant and it’s thin plastic nursery pot inside, so it can be removed and washed quickly whenever I need to use it for serving guests!

Unique Ways to Display Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Nine | Wall Decor

After trying several ways to hang plates, these adhesive plate hanger discs are my favorite.

To layer your plates like this, use different length nails to hang.

Displaying Antique Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Ten | Candle Holders

These cute tin baby cups make for beautiful moody candle holders and give off the best reflections.

Decorating with Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Eleven | Display your Dishes as a Collection

If you have multiple pieces that are similar in color or purpose, you can group them together for a fun change of decor.

My favorites to group are cake stands, pitchers and soup tureens.  Also, notice the silverware on display, if you love the handles display them in a pitcher.

Creative Ways to Display Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Number Twelve | Table Decor

I love using these tiered trays, especially on my living room coffee table to display special momentos and seasonal decor.

How to Display Thrifted Dishes by sheholdsdearly.com

Hopefully, now you have some new ideas and inspiration for ways to display your thrifted, gifted, vintage and antique dishes.

And don’t overlook those odd piece like butter dishes and gray boats, not if you really love them.

 Using dishes can create much needed counter space, provide economical wall decor and save you money on groceries because you can buy in bulk!

P.S. For more interesting ways to display collections, check out this article from Country Living.

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