Do you have a collection of antique and vintage platters and plates that you love but never really use unless you are entertaining? You are missing out – your most beloved china could be the stars in your decorating!



This summer I’m adding lots of the classic Blue & White to our home {I almost named this post Decorating with Blue & White No. II.}

I hope to get you started using your beauties on the daily as eye candy that you will love!



I am always looking for a few new ways to use my extensive collection of plates and platters here at FrenchGardenHouse and here are a few of my favorite ways.



Large Platters can be used to create an impact for smaller decorative accents. Like magic, when you place an assortment of smalls on a platter, they make a much bigger statement and make an impact.

Do you have a collection you want to show off? Put your prized pieces on a platter!



In our living room, I placed a large antique Blue Willow Platter on a stack of my favorite Charles Faudree books. On top? A sweet little collection that includes two beautifully monogrammed sterling match safes, two small antique poetry books, and a sterling bowl filled with sea shells that my little people found and painted as a souvenir of a wonderful day spent together at the beach!




One of the most “messy” parts of our home is next to the stove. Since I love gourmet herbs, olive oil, vinegars and antique containers for them, not only do I purchase these flavorful products, but we are often given them as gifts, too!  We always have quite a collection, and honestly, since if I can’t see it I tend not to use it, for me it works better when I can actually see them.



Placing all these lovely decorative bottles together on a large platter keeps them out where I can see them, but where they visually look organized.



I don’t drink much, and if I’m honest, after 1/2 glass of wine I am already plenty happy! Anyone who knows me knows that I am a lightweight in that department. But that doesn’t mean that when we entertain I don’t sometimes set up a temporary bar on a pretty tray!



A beautifully set bar boosts our spirits as much as the delicious offerings on it. I often set an antique Blue & White  platter on a larger silver tray right by the front door to welcome guests the minute they enter with a signature drink.  Create a bar so visually beautiful that your guests want to drink it in.  The beauty of a temporary bar set on a tray is that if needed, you can carry it to where the action is!




A full set or just one or two, hanging plates on the wall will transform your displays. The round shapes beautifully break up square spaces, whether displayed with rectangular paintings or surrounded by the square designs of mantels and boxes etc.

You can hang them easily from those metal plate hangers, all it takes is a nail and a hammer, and for you to decide how many to hang!



Another easy way to display an intriguing antique platter is to set it on a clear plate stand.  This is one of my favorite antique transfer ware platters ever.  I layered it on the antique mantel in the guest room right over the antique French print of a boat.

It brings that touch of fresh summery white and blue to this room – I love it!


Antique English Sailing Platter


Yes, platters and plates were designed to serve food, but they can also hold plenty of other things!  We all have “orphan” dishes, no? {or am I the only one who sometimes just can’t resist buying a “one-of-a-kind” saucer or plate because it grabs my heart?}



Here at home we have a small antique bowl next to our front door to give us a great place to drop our keys, and our Bentley’s “walking” bags.  A slightly large platter holds our outgoing mail. Platters and plates are so versatile!

There are so many ways to put your plates to work!  An antique plate can hold a collection of different gourmet salts for a special table setting.



In the guest bathroom, not only did I stand a decorative antique Blue & White platter against the mirror as artwork, I am using another slightly larger one to hold our necessities!




I’ll be adding some antique blue and white platters and plates to the FrenchGardenHouse online shop this week!

I love the crisp, traditional and classic look of Blue & White for summer, do you?



à bientôt


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  1. Again, I have to thank you for the inspiration to pull something out of the closet and display it! With the last post you convinced me to get over the fear of using my grandmother’s/great aunt’s antique linens, pull them out and display them. Now you’ve inspired me to get my great aunt’s Limoges off the shelf and use it/display it. Why in the world am I not using, at the very least, some of it in one way or another. How I wish you could come for a visit, go through my “things” and re-do my home!

  2. Love all the ideas for ways to incorporate platters into home decor. Right now I,m packing all those plates in anticipation of moving but will remember these ideas when I unpack. Merci!

  3. Lidy, these are all wonderful decorating tips, and I practice many of them in my own home. Your vignettes are beautiful, and I see we have some of the same decorating books. Mr. Faudree was and always will be my favorite interior designer!!!

  4. Sue Malizia

    Just love all your ideas using the blue and white plates and platters. =)

  5. There are those beautiful “signature Lidy” vignettes! Rather than creating vignettes lately, I am packing them away….only to hopefully in a couple of months from now they will be re-created with inspiration from you!! Now pass me that gorgeous silver urn!!! Have a great week Lidy!

  6. Sandra Fischer

    Love the display ideas!!! I have a ton of odd platters and pitchers hidden in my cupboards and I will start putting your ideas to work

  7. You have so many unique ideas here, Lidy. I love the square blue plate/platter. I have a lot of salad/dessert plates that I’ve picked up here and there to use with white dinner plates. I’m inspired now to pick up some of those display thingies you can find at craft stores, to mix into vignettes.

    Thanks so much! Hope you are having a fabulous summer! 🙂

  8. Ginger Valdes

    Every single photo is inspiring. I just love using items in different, unique ways and you’ve given me so many ideas. Ahhh. Blue and white!

  9. Definitely got some new ideas from the post. I typically purchase old silver plate trays and repurpose them. I have also begun to decoupage the interior of some of these items as they are often quite worn.

  10. Thankx for sharing your wonderful ideas.
    Certainly going to use one or two of them to show off my Blue and White Delft ware.

  11. Julie Carriere

    Oh Lidy, I love your approach to using antique dishes and platters. I often use them as the background on a plate stand for my little vignettes. I just love how using an antique platter gives a touch more importance to whatever is on it .

  12. Jean Van

    Hi, Lidy,
    Loved all your blue plate’s and how you decorate with them, very nice blue is such a cozy and yet pretty color, I have a lot of it to and plate’s thank’s for showing so many ways to use them and to think people just ate off them. Have a good week~Jean~~~~~~~~

  13. Ronna Conley

    I am having a dinner party this summer and using white dishes & using blue & white dishes as the accent color. I am also displaying a collection of blue & white platters & various other blue & white pieces. Thank you for the inspirations you have given me.

  14. Jan Schouw

    So many great ideas to use cherished plates/platters. Thank you.

  15. Mary coleman

    Wonderful blog filled with ideas! I went straight to a guest bath with a tray I love that has a big crack and purposefully spilled the bath salts to cover crack and added an “orphan”spoon newly polished and VOILA…. so fun !!
    Thank you as always, mon ami from afar! ?

  16. Mary, I love that! And now everyone using your pretty bathroom will be spoiled visually with your creative and I figuring display.

  17. Frankie MAcLauchlan

    Love to see an email come in from you. I am in love with anything blue and white. It is so classic and I think it goes with everything. We use it in every room in our home! Thanks for your lovely pictures.

  18. Sharon CrigSt

    You’ve inspired me to get out a few of my antique plates and depression glass to use in a few special places!

  19. gloria

    I will definitely use a decorative plate in my guest bathroom. What a pretty setting.

  20. I really enjoyed this blog on decorating with antique dishes! I inherited about 5 collections of China and odd pieces my late mother and both grandmothers left behind after passing away! None of my sisters wanted any of it ! So I cleaned it up( some of it was extremely dirty) and use it for holidays ! Now after reading your blog and seeing how you display the pieces, I will reevaluate their potential uses and experiment in regrouping the China and silver plate differently! I love the bar you made using the platter and silver tray! Merry Christmas!

    1. What a treasure trove you must have Laura! I hope that you use your collection of China from your mother and both grandmothers. They love being out and serving other purposes these days! xo

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