Friday, June 14, 2013

Displaying Antique Plates and China

There are two ways to go about collecting china. Our parents generation got huge sets of matching china that took up space in a cupboard and was never used for fear it would be chipped. It was all very stuffy and ho-hum. These days we don't do the formal dining thing nearly as often, and there really isn't much of a place for fine china. That means most of the antique china is flooding back onto the market at crazy cheap prices. I by no means condone buying an entire matched set. You'll be saddled with it for life and it will just take up space. What's way more fun is to buy an individual plate here, a tea cup there, maybe a teapot if the fancy takes you. Just acquire the pieces over time. You can go for a specific color scheme if you prefer an uncluttered look, or just buy any ole' piece that makes you smile. Amass a collection that's somewhere between English cottage and mad hatter.
Since formal china is on the way out, formal china cupboards are being sold for dirt cheap too. You can usually snag a cupboard for a fraction of what previous generations are paying. Think outside the box- get one that's painted (a bold color or something simpler). Wall mounted shelves work great for plate display too, or just hang them right on the wall- but mix it up so it's not too stiff and formal.
Here are some of my favorite examples.
Tomorrow is town wide tagsale day in my town and you better believe I'll be out there hunting for some awesome furniture. I'm going to take my camera with me and photograph as I go so you can enjoy the process too!
Happy Friday!
Fresh and bright feeling, these plates pick up the cheerful color scheme in the rest of the room.

Why not add a little color to an often under-utilized space. This collection of graphic transferware plates is gorgeous ensemble.

A whimsical collection of pastel plates looks right at home in a vintage mint green shelf.

The perfect combination of modern eclectic plates and dishes with a stunning antique cupboard.

Who knew hanging a pallet on the wall would create a shelf so sophisticated. The plates feel like individual works of art when presented so nicely. 

A cheeky collecting of vintage fish plates are an amusing counterpoint to an antique glazed top cupboard.

Well first off, I adore this kitchen. I want to steal it!
This collection of plates has been kept monochromatic for a clean look.

Beautiful blue and green floral plates hung on the wall create a tie dye effect in this formal dining room.

You'd never want for a plate or mug with this sweet and well stocked vintage cupboard. The teetering cake plates
 on top would last about six seconds in my house.

A modern kitchen gets a healthy dose of texture and humor with a collection of royal commemorative plates.

Seriously, a collection like this can be pulled together with minimal monetary investment. If you hit up secondhand shops and flea markets, it wouldn't take very long at all. Then you can host a fabulous tea party!

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