Dishes are great for gifting. They are functional, practical, stylish and can be passed on to younger generations as an heirloom. This idea is brilliant which is why it should not come as a surprise when half of your friends decide to say ‘Congratulations’ with a package that clinks with slight movement. The result is you getting stuck with at least a dozen sets in a range of color and designs, enough to make a cafeteria owner blush.
For those who are stuck with such a ginormous stack of plates, finding a display shelf that could accommodate all these can be daunting especially if the store where the plates were brought from will not accept returns. While re-gifting is a good idea, some people feel that it is improper to give away gifts.
And then there are some people who are left with just a piece of what used to be a set. Instead of throwing the loot out or in cases when re-gifting is not an option, here are some incredibly ingenious ways to upcycle old or even new dishes.
1. Make lighting a room interesting with personalized candle holders!
If you have an old glass lying around, turn it into a votive holder by decorating it with acrylic paint and a tea light. It makes for a great, personalised gift – easy to do, cheap and most importantly, fun! Another way to jazz up your bathroom is to decorate and ‘scent’ it with aromatic candles using teacups as holders. You may opt to use teacups in varying designs and height to create an interesting display, or choose symmetry with similar teacups.
2. Create a pixie garden theme with garden sticks and centerpiece.
Make your garden ethereal-looking by decorating it with stained glass plates made into garden sticks. Glass plates that have unique patterns and shapes are best. Using an old wooden spindle, you can drill holes onto the plates and screw them together with an old drawer knob for better anchorage. But before doing this on your plate of choice, practice on a few older worn-out pieces that you will not cry over when your first attempt turned out unsuccessful. Drilling a hole onto glass plates can be a tricky. Use a small drill bit to create a ‘guide hole’ before you aim for a larger one. Make sure to put just enough pressure so as not to crack the plates. Also, placing small puddle of water at the bottom of the dish helps.
3. Mirror, mirror on the wall, you say?
If you have artichoke plates or floral-shaped ones, it is time to get crafty! By applying a thin bead of strong adhesive or putty onto the outer edge of the mirror and pressing it onto the center of the plate, you can produce a stunning wall ornament! Secure the mirror and let the adhesive dry overnight. You can use strong double-sided tapes at the back of the plates to attach them properly onto the wall. You may secure them further by attaching small hooks at the base of the plate to ‘catch’ prevent them from falling.
4. Fruit and candy serving tray or table centerpiece
Turn old plates into multi-tiered serving platters and trays. They can also be used as a jewellry tray, a key holder or a general catch-all to make your counter tidy and interesting at the same time. Serve nuts with it or fill it with colorful candy. With this handsome tray in sight, you will never run out of ideas!