The Great Wall of China

Last week, I visited "the great wall of china!"
Seriously, I thought I had too many plates, but this takes the cake!
This wall of china is located inside H.D. Buttercup, a fantastic furniture store that I love to frequent.

I saw a similar plate display inside ABC Carpet and Home in NYC last year.
Both displays are by the same British designer, Timothy Oulton.

Hanging plates on the wall is not new.
I've been doing it since I had my first apartment!
I remember collecting bread and butter size plates for 25 cents, all different patterns and hanging them above my kitchen cabinets on the soffit.

Country Living
In fact, I can't remember a house I ever lived in that I didn't hang plates on the wall somewhere!
It is such a great way to fill up a blank wall, especially when on a budget or lacking any kind of art. The above photo is an example of how a few plates, artfully arranged can have visual impact.

You can mix them up, or arrange similar patterns like the red transferware above.

Designer, Jackye Lanham filled a bedroom wall with mulberry transferware plates, creating a soothing and homey feel. Some might say this look is a little too grandma-like.
I think it is quite sophisticated, actually!

She also hung plates on a kitchen wall, surrounding a stainless steel hood using pewter plates.
Genius, I say!

Oh, and Bunny Williams created a gorgeous wall using blue and white platters and plates, surrounding a lovely mirror.

Another one of my favorite designers, Charles Faudree mixed plates and botanicals surrounding a portrait. It's all on a toile background too!
Perhaps that's a little too much visual stimulation....

House Beautiful
A plate display can also be quite simple. The white ironstone looks wonderful on this brown wall, tying in with the white grandfather clock.

House Beautiful
Even just a few plates hung above this bathtub look fabulous.
You wouldn't have to worry about water damage from the steam, that's for sure!

House Beautiful
One of my favorite groupings, using brown transferware and little roe deer trophies.

House Beautiful
Designer John Oetgen created a kind of patchwork quilt effect on his client's family room wall.
I love the Bohemian vibe in this room with the bright pillows and pink cabinet. Perfect for a family with small children.

I'll never forget the first time I saw this arrangement at the Viceroy Hotel in LA.
Designer Kelly Wearstler hung them outside in the patio area. I was blown away!

House Beautiful
Outside or inside, plates are virtually indestructible. That's why hanging them above a stove works. You can always take them down and run them through the dishwasher when they get all yucky from cooking oils.

Don't you just love the way the green majolica looks with the green and white check floor?

I love how fresh this blue and white room looks, especially with the white painted paneling.
I could go on and on...
Let me show you how I've incorporated plates in my decor:

I hung various sizes and colors of majolica plates above the windows in our breakfast room.
These plates aren't particularly valuable and if spread around the house or locked in a cabinet, they wouldn't have been appreciated as much.

Yes, the majolica has replaced the 25 cent thrift store saucers from 40 years ago!
But the idea is still the same.

My two favorite majolica plates flank a European painting above my desk.
I found them at a flea market in Nice and I think they work, filling up this alcove along with the deer trophy.

So if you are intimidated by a big, blank wall and have no idea what to do with it, consider plates.
It doesn't have to be grandma-like. Any kind of plate or platter would work, and chances are you probably already have them in your cupboard!
Consider also, framing a mirror or piece of art with plates, radiating out from the center.
Especially wonderful over a sofa or hall table!

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