How to style a china cabinet.

How To Style A China Cabinet

My neglected china cabinet has been looking sad and it’s no wonder, I haven’t updated the shelves in at least ten years, maybe longer. Which is shocking, I know. How can I call myself a blogger and overlook a grand opportunity like this one. Today I’m sharing how to style a china cabinet or at least how to organize one.

For more organizing ideas on dishes see my post Organizing A Kitchen.

I wasn’t planning on turning this into a blog post and didn’t think about taking photos until the china cabinet was half empty.


China cabinet before needing to be styled.


You could say, I have a love-hate relationship with my china cabinet. It’s a bit out dated, but I thought just maybe, I could give it a new life by changing up the display.

My solution was to load up the shelves with my grandmother’s china. After arranging and rearranging, I have these tips to offer…

Styling A China Cabinet

  • Group place settings on multiple shelves
  • Stack cups and saucers into little towers
  • Add interesting shapes with other accessories
  • Mix patterns
  • Stack extra plates artistically for storage


Organize your china cabinet for storage. #chinacabinet #chinastorage #howtostyleachinacabinet


Pretty mix of china to fill up the china cabinet. #chinacabinet #chinacabinetstyle #frenchcountrychinacabinet


My original use for the china cabinet was for display only with a few pieces of china, cut crystal, silver trays and ginger jars. What it was lacking was a sense of purpose, and once the shelves were loaded, I realized this china cabinet was designed for storage.


Large display china cabinet for a pretty background. #chinacabinet #chinacabinetstyle #frenchcountrychinacabinet


My grandmother had two sets of Limoges china that look so when pretty mixed together. One is a little more feminine than the other but the colors and flowers are very much alike.


Styling a china cabinet. #chinacabinet #chinacabinetstyle #frenchcountrychinacabinet


Group odd shaped china pieces together. #chinacabinet #chinacabinetstyle #frenchcountrychinacabinet


Each place setting has a dinner plate, salad plate, dessert plate and a cup and saucer. Grouping the place settings gives the shelves a sense of order. Now the overall look is organized without it being over crowded.


Updated china cabinet with a French country style. #chinacabinet #chinacabinetstyle #frenchcountrychinacabinet


Since I’m not sure how much weight the glass shelves can hold, the bulk of the china is stacked across the bottom shelf. It’s my favorite part of the display because it looks like the country French style of stacking plates. Très chic!

If I had a hutch instead of a china cabinet, I would stack more on the upper shelves without worrying about the weight.

The look of stacked cups and saucers is a fun touch. I tried to go three high but they seemed too unstable. Two are good.


Transitional style in the dining room.


I left a few spots empty where I can add seasonal touches. I’m thinking mini pumpkins or glass ornaments might be a pretty addition for the holidays. More to come.

Be sure to pin this for later, and follow Thistle Key Lane on Pinterest for more fun inspiration!


How to style a china cabinet - Thistle Key Lane #chinacabinet #chinastorage #howtostyleachinacabinet


Styling and organizing the china cabinet felt really good and I think it looks so much better now. Let me know what you think. I’m all ears for suggestions!


©2018 How To Style A China Cabinet first appeared on Thistle Key Lane™

11 thoughts on “How To Style A China Cabinet

  1. Gwen says:

    This is beautiful. Everything is too pretty to hide away. I have an odd piece of several great grand parents or grandmothers so I try to display them each year along with my own dishes. I used my own dishes so much before I had kids I wonder if they remember it? I hope you do use her china. I’ve started using a bowl for cereal or toast. I truly enjoy what I know my Grandma liked too. Thank you for sharing.

    • Michelle Meyer says:

      Thank you Gwen! The last few years I’ve been using my grandmother’s china more and more. Knowing her appreciation for pretty things makes it all the more special.

  2. Marsha says:

    This is so elegant. I would find it hard to select which dinnerware set to use and put on display. I can’t wait to apply what I have now learned. Thank you for such great instructions.

  3. Nancy says:

    Your grandmother is smiling down on you and thinking to herself, “She inherited my decorating sense and my love of pretty things when she inherited my beautiful china.” Its so nice to see antique china appreciated and beautifully displayed. I am antique dealer and so often relatives discard beautiful sets of antique china and feed their family off white Home Goods white plates or God forbid use paper plates every day.

    • Michelle Meyer says:

      Yes I think my grandmother would be very happy to see her china not only displayed but used as well. Thank you so much Nancy for your sweet comments!

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