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Thursday, February 14, 2013

Using my everyday dishes as Valentine's decor

It's the day of love! Everything is rosy and life's problems just need to take a breather for just one day, don't you think?

You know I do practically everything on a budget, right? Well, here's my version of decorating for Valentine's Day (or part of it, at least).

I've been collecting dishes since I was 20. This is our everyday spring and summer set, that I began acquiring 30 years ago. We have a fall and winter set, in brown tones, as well.

Every year, on Valentine's Day, I swap out the dark winter dishes for these pink, burgundy and white floral, spring and summer dishes. I let Valentine's Day mark the first day of spring for me. (I'm ready, by now, to move out of winter.)

Our everyday dishes are on display 24/7. When we redid our kitchen, several years ago, I knew I wanted something simple, vintage-looking and beautiful to store everyday dishes in. I didn't want to keep them all locked up in a cupboard, but wanted them to be a part of my overall decor.

I scoured books with photos of vintage kitchens. What I found, that I liked, is something called a Welsh dresser, basically an open hutch atop a cabinet.

This hutch-display is built in, constructed of cabinet pieces from Home Depot, and painted to complement my kitchen colors of yellow, white and blue-green. We call this our dish dresser. It's built into the eating nook of our kitchen, just steps away from the work area.

Putting away dishes is a breeze. I stack all the dinner plates from the dishwasher and carry them over to their stack on the dresser, about 10 steps away. I keep the dishes most frequently used on the side of the dresser that is closest to the dishwasher.

In our old kitchen configuration, I had an upper cabinet, just above the dishwasher, for all of our dishes. The kids couldn't reach the top shelf to get something down, or put away the dishes. And I kept banging my head on the corner of the cupboard door, while bending over and standing up with the dishes to be put away. An open shelf of some sort, at a lower height, seemed like such an obvious solution.

So here we are, Valentine's Day. My everyday dishes are in just the color palette to suit the holiday. And because I keep these dishes tucked away for winter, they are new and fresh today. Using my everyday things as Valentine's decor.

Happy Valentine's Day!


  1. Replies
    1. Hi live and learn,
      Thank you. While I like pretty things, I also really like the practical.

  2. hi lili,
    what a sweet dishes......I love the decor!!!!!
    Your Valentine- cookies are cute!!!
    Happy Valentine,
    love Regina

    1. Thank you, Regina! I hope you had a wonderful Valentine's Day!

  3. So pretty!

    I am saving my pennies for a kitchen makeover and I'm always scouting for ideas. I don't have room for a Welsh dresser although I would love one. I love the idea of having pretty dishware on display. Then you can enjoy it even when it isn't in use. We have a built-in glass front cabinet in our living room which houses my wedding crystal and other pretty pieces. Up away from little fingers/paws but still able to be seen and enjoyed. :)

    1. Hi Kris,
      Your glass-front cabinet, filled with your wedding crystal, sounds lovely. It's nice to be able to see some of your beautiful things, and perhaps use them more often because you can see them readily.

      The other advantage to the glass-front, as you've likely discovered, is things don't get dusty! I'd like to add some built-in storage to our living room some day. Glass-front sounds nice.

  4. Beautiful!!! I love your dishes. :)

    1. Hi Belinda,
      Thank you. :-) These dishes still make me smile when I take them out each spring (after about 30 years, so I guess I knew my taste even back then).

  5. The cabinet is simply beautiful!

    1. Thank you, Jo! I hope you had a wonderful Valentine's Day!


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