Random Plate Wall

Lately I’ve wanted a little change in this front tiny living room so I layered and randomized my white plates {you can see the before photo at the bottom of the post because I like to keep you on your toes}.  It’s the first room you see when you walk in the door and I wanted the wall to have more personality.  But, I have an aversion to most wall art {have I told you that?} I normally only like mirrors and shutters and such.  I guess I have some rare disease  where paintings with much going on drive me crazy. Since we already have a gallery wall, and since I have a collection of odds and ends white dishes that I already had hanging,  I thought I’d just play around with the layout.  I really didn’t know where to start.

Weeks ago I was inspired by Christina’s random plate wall. And I only had my phone to take a photo but, it’s still worth seeing.  Even after looking at other people’s random plate walls, making my own and allowing it to feel organic was daunting.  So, I decided to give myself a challenge to use as many of the current nail holes as possible.  I’ve found that parameters like that usually bring out more creativity than just having a blank slate anyway.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox

If you are in the mood, this is a super cheesy little slideshow showing the process. Watch out, it has music. I couldn’t get iMovies to work right to make my own slideshow and I’m at Blissdom and just spoke to a group of beautiful home bloggers and in this one post alone,  I’m pretty much breaking every suggestion I gave them.  But whatever, rules are meant to be broken.

And because I am writing this post backwards and inside out, I’ll end with the before photo and then immediately move into talking about how I feel about the top photo on this post, the after.  So far, I love the look of the random, layered plates, but, they easily get turned crooked with the closing of doors. And in case you are wondering, here’s how to hang plates on your wall.

Do you have plates hanging on your walls?


  1. I do hang plates on my walls, I love them as art!
    I have to say… I liked your “before” wall of plates better. The new jumbled arrangement with them going crooked makes me “feel” like it’s disorganized and I worry about them chipping each other. Crazy huh? But to each his own, especially as far art is concerned.

  2. SO pretty! I love the random arrangement, all of the white and the pretty wall color! Would certainly love to visit that room!

  3. I can’t keep up with you! Things keep moving – the tables, THE THROW (the coveted throw I love LOL)!!

    I only have a few plates hanging. I’d like to do a plate arrangement and a gallery wall somewhere too – haven’t decided where yet.


  4. i love the new arrangement. i like that it has more depth and it’s a million times more interesting!

  5. I really like it! How did you deal with the layering, though, since some plate backs are further away from the wall? (I watched the slide show w/out sound, so forgive me if you explained it in there!)

  6. I love the arrangement in the top photo! It’s fun and fresh! So, did you end up making a zillion holes in the wall? LOL! (that’d be my method. sigh)

  7. Guess I’m more of an even Stehphen sorta gal I perfer the before shot but totally admire trying something new out.

  8. I like it! It seems to look right and great with the cozy rug! Janell

  9. It’s okay about the inside out and backwards post – you’re at BLissdom! :) I do not yet have plates on my walls. I think my hubby of only 3 months will lose his mind! But, I am going to ease him into it. I have a plan to build our collection of rustic picture frames around this giant clock we have in our living room. (I’ve shown him a preview and he didn’t balk too much.) After I do that, plates will just be a change from wood to porcelain. Or something like that. We’ll see. BTW, like the cheesy music in the slideshow.

  10. Hi Nester!
    I have only commented once before but “met” you through Edie’s Birtday Bash. I LOVE your plate wall and think you did a fabulous job with it. I even really like the little Smilebox presentation, music and all. It’s like a French movie short or something along those lines. Thanks for sharing this, it has inspired me. I have a blank slate wall in my master bedroom that is just “screaming” for some attention. I think this would be a great addition to our room. Thanks again and I hope you are having a super fab time at Blissdom!

  11. I’ve just got to say that my cretivity is totally sparked by things like already placed nail holes too. When my husband is hanging something for me and asks where I want the srew drilled through it, I just say wherever…on a stud…and then covering the screw beings out a much better piece than if I were to just do it myself…

    case in point…


  12. I am too OCD for the new look. If it works for you, then it’s all good.

  13. I’m looking for ideas for my dining room wall, and this seems like a great solution for the big empty space. I like the layering. Guess I’m headed to the thrift store soon!

  14. Oh, I love the random, Nester! I’ve been collecting white plates for my kitchen wall for a while…but I have to paint first. ;) Going to watch the slideshow now. :)

  15. Love it, great choices on the sizes and shapes of plates! You make random beautiful! The video is such a nice idea for us to see!

  16. Love the plate wall! and love the music to the video. what is it??

  17. A tip that might keep the plates straight: put little pieces of “ticky tack” putty on the backside of the plates, then press to the plate or wall behind. I use this trick to keep my hall wall gallery straight. Thanks for all the inspiration!

  18. Love the wall, really love the coffee table with the rustic bowl, gorgeous. The room is a great blend of modern influences with welcoming charm. Have a great one, Laura

  19. I like ’em both for different reasons! The new random look has cool depth. Rawk. :D

  20. The new look is interesting, but I think my OCD self likes the old more organized version:) I have some plates hanging above the windows in my living room…in a straight line!

  21. I love the white plates but like the “before” arrangment a bit better than the new one. Love your style!

  22. I love it! I, too, have a huge aversion to wall art. It’s too “dr.s office”. I use lots of old windows, mirrors, shutters and plates also!

  23. Beautiful! I don’t have plates, but I have copper pots hanging on our kitchen wall, does that count? ;-)

  24. I think the better question would be: Who doesn’t hang plates on their walls? Especially after being inspired by yours. It’s such a great way to add interest to a wall without settling for wall “art” or breaking the bank.

    Thanks, Nester!

  25. I love the overlapping!

  26. I too was wonderimg how you layered them? Love it!!!

  27. I use plates everywhere! They are easy to move, cheap and allow for a lot of creativity. I do have to say that I like the “before” arrangement better than the “after”, but as someone else said, if you love it, that’s all that matters.

  28. I use to have plates hanging…now I don’t but I LOVE the way you did yours…before AND after! Still jealous that you are at Blissdom. Sigh.

  29. I love the wall! You’ve done such a nice job of keeping it beautiful and interesting. Nice work!

  30. I love the plates! I’ve been wanting to do that for a long time, but I haven’t taken the time to go shopping/thrifting for them. By the way, I just painted my bedroom in Comfort Gray because I loved this color on your walls…its perfect! I love it so much! Oh…and I also bought a sample of the color you painted on your armoire…its perfect, too. Thanks so much for all the awesome ideas!

  31. Love the wall,and that room is really beautiful.

  32. I love the before AND the after. I’ve been wanting to display some of my mom’s old china, may have to do this. Have you ever tried these: http://www.dischangers.com

  33. Thanks for the inspiration. Instead of spending money I didn’t have on fancy candle sconces, I decoupaged 2 glass plates from the $ store with leftover fabric. They are now hanging on either side of our wedding portrait over the mantle. And my husband loves it! :)

  34. Very pretty! I do not have any plates on my wall, but its not because I don’t like them…I just don’t have any fancy plates! Maybe I should look for some cuz I am really digging this look! Great job!

  35. FYI – Dollar Tree sells plate hangers, pack of 2 for $1. :)

  36. I do not have plates hanging on my wall. Until I found your blog I would have never even thought of it. I mean I’ve seen it done, but always with tacky plates and never like this. The white plates and the fact that you use so many in an interesting design makes it so modern and fresh. I love the new design with the overlapping. I have definitely never seen that before! Now I’m going to be scouring my local goodwill for white plates and platters :)
    P.S. Love the seperate post on “how to hang plates” too. Safety pin, upholstery tack, paperclip. Very creative :)

  37. Yes I DO have plates hanging on my wall! I wrote a post about my little plate wall a few days ago which was inspired by YOUR plate wall. (I even included a little quote by you)
    I like your new arrangemet. The layering and random placement gives it more interest! Hope you have a great time at blissdom!

  38. I think the random post goes with the random plates. I have to admit that I had to watch the slide show multiple times. The first time I kept watching the pillows change position and imagining all the up and down on the sofa you had to do to hang plates . The second time through I kept thinking about Olive Garden and how good that sounded. Then my daughter came in the room and asked why I was playing Olive Garden music and it all started to make sense. I am very OCD and my husband makes fun of how balanced I make the mantel but I have to say I like the random, layered effect better.

  39. I do have SOME plates– but not so much. I like them fine– and would maybe incorporate more- but I find that most plates I have are to be used to eat off of.

    But– hey! I loved that little video with music… it made me laugh cause I was supposed to be watching the plates. I couldn’t help it though, cause I watched the couch and pillows and throw… OH! AND A FEW RANDOMLY PLACED PLATES on the couch …you’re funny!

  40. I love the plate hangings, I too hang them…in any room! I didn’t realize what I have against art until you mentioned your problem, I too have an aversion to artwork.

  41. The plates look lovely, but really, I just want to walk across that delicious rug, take a nap on that comfy couch while covered up by your gorgeous throw. Do you want a house guest?! :-)

  42. i’m in love with that couch! where’d you get it?

  43. I love this look! Its so clean but visually interesting. I also love how you layered them – that looks great. I’ve only seen plate walls with spaces between all plates. The layering definitely adds a richness.

  44. haven’t giggled that much in a while…loved the misic selection that was chosen to go along with that. I kept expecting to see a couple dancing in and out of the scene! (he!he!) I like the plates overlapping a little bit; adds to the organic look of it all. I have a few plates and a set of beautiful Tiffany oyster plates that were my grandmother’s…alas, one night I heard a loud crash and doen came TWO of those plates. We realized the next day when our son was hitting a tennis ball off the wall outside where the plates were that the vibration had knocked them loose. So for now…I have to find a wall without and exterior hitting wall to hang plates. Have fun!

  45. thank you another inpiring idea. I have been purging files this week and came across a Martha Stewart idea: she suggested using white finger nail polish on the end of the plate hanger so it is camoflauged(sp?). I personally don’t like to see the hanger ends showing when I hang my plates so I’m going to try this. Must remember to put white polish on the grocery list for this week:)

  46. I like the randomness and the overlapping of the plates! I do hang plates on my wall and, since I live in California, after I hang them I add a little earthquake wax or museum wax behind them to hold them in place. I found mine at home depot; if you can find it in your area this might help with them shifting. You could also use some masking tape. As you see, I’ve had a similar problem before :-)

  47. Hello Nester!!!

    I really like the new look…but I am really wondering where you got that gorgeous rug??? I want to sink my feet into it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  48. I want to know where you got the beautiful bowl. I an envious of such a large cool dough bowl?

  49. great idea for decorating a large wall! Perhaps it might be even more interesting by adding some cool font letters or numbers or a special word or two to a couple of the plates? just an idea..

    had to share my tip about keeping things in place on the wall… i usually add a small dot of that poster-putty that we used in college to hang our posters (before 3M made all those cool hangers!). just a bit of itreally keeps things in place. i’ve used it for lop-sided pictures, tiny little topply knicknacks, even to keep the lid of my cookie/teabag jar from rattling each time someone walks by…

    :-) Laura B

  50. Your after photo is totally magazine worthy!!! I LOVE the new coffee table and rug! They really add to the room! And I love your plate wall, I’ve never been very big on them, but maybe I should try it!

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