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Embracing Tradition: The Timeless Southern Art of Hanging Plates on Walls

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Image by Jeff Herr

In the South, decorating your home is about more than just creating a beautiful space—it’s about telling your story, honoring your heritage, and adding a touch of personal charm. One of the most beloved and timeless traditions in Southern home decor is hanging plates on walls. This simple yet elegant practice brings warmth, personality, and a bit of Southern hospitality to any room.

See how beloved Georgia-raised interior designer, James Farmer, gracefully integrates hanging plates into his designs. 

Image by Emily Followill

Tradition with Deep Roots

The tradition of displaying plates on walls goes back centuries. It started in Europe, where families would showcase their finest china, and eventually made its way to the South. Here, it has flourished, becoming a hallmark of Southern home decor. In Southern homes, plates aren’t just for dining; they’re for storytelling.

Image by Jeff Herr

Adding Texture and Visual Delight

Plates on walls do more than just look pretty; they add texture and depth to your decor. Unlike flat paintings or photos, plates bring a three-dimensional element that catches the eye and adds a sense of warmth and interest to the room. The various shapes, sizes, and patterns can be arranged in countless creative ways, making your wall a unique expression of your style.

Image by Jeff Herr

Creating Your Own Plate Wall

1. Choose Your Plates: Start with a collection of plates that hold personal significance or appeal to your aesthetic. Mix antique heirlooms with modern pieces for a dynamic look.

2. Plan Your Layout: Lay out the plates on the floor to experiment with different arrangements before committing to a design. Consider the balance of colors, sizes, and shapes.

3. Secure Hanging: Use plate hangers or adhesive disc hangers that are specifically designed to hold plates securely on the wall. Make sure they are rated for the weight of your plates.

4. Create a Focal Point: Arrange the plates to create a focal point in the room, such as above a mantel or sofa. This draws the eye and anchors the space.

5. Layer and Add Depth: Don’t be afraid to layer plates or combine them with other wall decor elements like mirrors or framed art for added texture and depth.

Image by Emily Followill
Image by Jeff Herr
Image by Emily Followill

Bringing plates into your home decor is more than just a design choice—it’s a way to celebrate your heritage, cherish your memories, and add a timeless touch of Southern charm to your space. Embrace this delightful tradition and let your walls tell a story that is uniquely yours.

Etsy is a great source for unique, beautiful plates as well as antique shops and estate sales. I’m also sharing some beautiful plates that are accessible and a great place to start below.

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Embracing Tradition: The Timeless Southern Art of Hanging Plates on Walls

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