Saturday, June 26, 2010

Using A Vintage Painted Shabby Drawer As An Easel For Decorative Plates

Featuring Decorative Plates In A Pretty Vignette Using A Painted Old Drawer

How sweet is this idea for featuring decorative plates....carefully exhibit them propped up inside an old painted drawer. Shabby collectors adore this idea of using a discarded drawer as an easel for displaying hand painted delicate plates.

Originally stored in China closets or hung on the wall, decorative plates look fantastic when styled as a mini-vignette inside a soft painted deep and narrow drawer.

Painting Your Cottage Style Drawer In Soft Romantic Colors

You can paint your drawer a solid color such as pink or white or add accented flowers or decals.
Perhaps you want at to line the drawer with vintage wallpaper or use remnants of old fabric or even tissue paper to stuff into the drawer to keep the plates and other objects stable. Use plates of different sizes for an interesting arrangement. Add other small objects to your display such as flatware, candle holders etc.

When choosing a color for the tissue paper or fabric pull out one of the colors from the plate to help keep your display eye catching.

Propping Plates On Plate Holders

For more stability for your plates, you can also stand the plates up on a small plate holder and insert the plate and it's holder into the drawer and than cover the plate base with fabric to hide the hardware.
I stay away from the wooden plate holders, they wobble too much. I like the inexpensive metal ones.

You will find so many more ideas about Shabby decorating in my book, Hot Cottage Collectibles For Vintage Style Homes (

Top photo courtesy of:

Michele's Cottage Gifts
53 Main Street
Plantsville, CT

Bottom photo courtesy of:

C. Dianne Zweig is the author of Hot Kitchen & Home Collectibles of the 30s, 40s, 50s and Hot Cottage Collectibles for Vintage Style Homes. She is also the Editor of an actively growing internet based resource community for people who buy, sell or collect antiques, collectibles and art. You can find Dianne’s fabulous retro and vintage kitchen, home and cottage collectibles at The Collinsville Antiques Company of New Hartford, CT, a 22,000 feet antique emporium with an in-house retro cafĂ©.To read more articles by C. Dianne Zweig click on this link: C. Dianne Zweig’s Blog Kitsch ‘n Stuff Email me at dianne@cdiannezweig.comVisit my website, CDianneZweig.comDianne is a member of:The American Society of Journalists and AuthorsThe Authors Guild, Inc.


  1. Very sweet indeed!!

    Susan and Bentley

  2. Thank you for your idea and photos. My husband has some drawers similar to this that were from his Grandmother's sewing machine table. He has three but we just didn't know how to display them. Now I am thinking on making each painted to match a seasonal theme!

  3. What a wonderful idea...i use old drawers from sewing machines to display towels in the bathroom. Your book is full of wonderful photo's and display ideas. Thanks again for sharing the inspiration!

  4. Sewing machine drawers are one thing I always look for when I go antiquing. I use them for many things. I like this idea, too! Have a nice week! Twyla

  5. Very sweet, yes. I really love the colours and pattern on the inside.

  6. I love this vintage look. I just saw patio accessories that have a pattern very similar to this. I think that I must have it!