Upcycling Ideas for Silver Plate

Upcycling Ideas for Silver Plate

Most thrift stores are positively littered with the remnants of wedding registries from days gone by. In particular, stacks of silver plate (not to be confused with stamped sterling silver) are a pretty common sight at secondhand shops. Trays, platters, bread baskets, pitchers- there are just scads of it available at thrift shops, varying in price and quality. Thankfully, today’s crafters are finding fresh ways to repurpose those silver-plated items into new and exciting projects.

Dining Room Wall Decor

dining room wall decor with silver trays

Image credit: Salvaged Living.

A collection of silver plate trays and platters is a great (and usually inexpensive) way to fill up wall space like this. Such a fun way to create dining room wall decor on a budget- and collecting pieces would be a fun scavenger hunt to go on!

Candelabra Jewelry Tree

silver candelabra as a jewelry tree stand

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

A stuffy candelabra isn’t something you see in today’s far more casual world. But it doesn’t mean they aren’t still useful, even in unorthodox ways. Check out how fabulous this one is as a jewelry tree- it just needed a few tiny tweaks!

Painted Tray and Sign

painting a silver plate tray

Image credit: Confessions of a Serial DIYer.

Doesn’t this tray look like it came from some high-end home decor boutique? But alas…it’s a thrifted silver tray that got quite the posh makeover thanks to paint and transfers.

Decorative Winter Scenes

winter decor ideas with silver plate

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Vintage silver-plated cups, goblets, and bowls are perfect for this wintery (or Christmas-y, if you prefer) craft idea. And the best part is that none of these “snow scenes” are permanent- so your vintage silver plate isn’t altered in any way.

Silver Plate Spoon Pendants

Spoon jewelry with vintage cameos

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Silver-plated silverware is easy to bend, flatten, and manipulate into various jewelry projects. In this case, silver-plated spoons are the perfect base to show off some colorful vintage cameos.

Tiered Tray Bird Feeder

silver trays as a bird feeder

Image credit: Thrifty Rebel Vintage/Color Me Thrifty.

There is no shortage of upcycling ideas for silver-plated trays. And in this case, a tiered tray is re-assembled into a fun and fancy bird feeder for the backyard. It’s a simple upcycle that requires very few tools and skills!

Recycled Yard Decor

metal flower for yard decor

Image credit: Color Me Thrifty.

Candle snuffers might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of funky garden decor. But look how cute they can be as painted flowers like this!

Scarf Hooks

silver spoons as hooks

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Since silver-plated flatware is so easy to bend, random pieces are perfect for upcycling into unique hooks. They could be used for anything- hats, jewelry, belts; but in this case, hooks for scarves.

Colorful Decoupaged Tray

outdoor serving tray with boho summer style

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

There are all sorts of silver plate trays to be found- some round, some rectangular, some with feet, some with raised sides. It’s just a matter of what you find on your thrifting adventures. But all of them are fun to repurpose in fresh and modern ways, like this boho-inspired drink tray.

Faux Turned Wood

painting silver plate candlesticks

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

Pitting is a type of corrosion that happens on silver plate, caused by a variety of factors. Which means that pitted silver-plated pieces (like these candlesticks) are ideal for painting projects. Perhaps faking the look of turned wood in this case?

From Casserole Server to Trendy Tray

silver plate casserole server as a tray

Image credit: Salvaged Living.

The silver plate casserole server is meant to fancify your glass casserole dish for a pot luck or party. But they can also be upcycled into useful, trendy trays like this. (And no paint on the silver- for the purists that may be reading this!)

Gold Gilding on Silver Plate

gilding the details on a silver plate tray

Image credit: Confessions of a Serial DIYer.

Sometimes, it’s the details on a silver-plated tray that can be the most eye-catching. A little upcycling alchemy turns those details from tarnished silver to glamorous gold with this gorgeous repurposing idea.

Silverware Plant Markers

making plant markers on silver plate flatware

Image credit: House of Hawthornes.

Stamping on silver-plated flatware is a fun craft with lots of applications- jewelry, charcuterie accessories, and in this case- plant markers. Of course, you likely already know which plants are which, but adding a little whimsy like this is never a bad idea, either.

Bread Basket to Farmhouse Bowl

metal basket for farmhouse decor

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

For better or worse, a silver plate bread basket is definitely out of touch in today’s laidback society. But, with the right ribbon and paint, you can easily transform it into a decorative bowl that’ll never need polishing again.

Succulent Planter

succulent planter in a silver plate bowl

Image credit: Petticoat Junktion.

Silver plated bowls are delightful when upcycled into small planters for around the house. In this case, faux succulents and seashells were combined for a cool, breezy look. But I think there are all sorts of possibilities for this idea- other artificial plants or even bottle brush trees at Christmas time!

Silver Service Wind Chimes

diy windchimes from a silver plate pitcher and goblets

Image credit: Color me Thrifty.

If serving water in silver-plated goblets isn’t on your to-do list, perhaps making DIY wind chimes like these is! Quirky and fun, it adds whimsy to your yard and puts those stuffy silver serving pieces to good reuse.

Upcycling Ideas for Silver Plate

ways to reuse silver plate

Image credit: Sadie Seasongoods.

I hope these ideas give you some much-needed inspiration before your next thrifting trip. Because if you see a stack of trays or a basket of silver-plated flatware, you’ll be swimming with ideas.

Craft on!


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silver plate and how to repurpose it for modern homes

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Sarah Ramberg is the owner of Sadie Seasongoods, a website that celebrates all things secondhand. From upcycling ideas and thrifted decor to vintage-centric travel itineraries, Sadie Seasongoods is a one-stop shop for anyone who loves thrifting and approachable repurposing ideas. Sarah is also the author of “Crafting with Flannel” and has been featured in numerous media outlets and magazines.


  1. So many ads it’s hard to find the article to read


    Why would you get hate mail for such a great idea? I’m sorry, Sadie. Women can be such judgemental b!7ches.

  3. Cheryl Atkinson says

    Some great ideas. I have painted a few platters and they sold right away. I also get my inspiration from Christy @ Serial Diyer. Thank you for sharing all the goods.

  4. Linda Stephens says

    I agree with you, Sarah. I love your ideas!

  5. I have been heartbroken over hearing “no one wants that stuff” about my silverplate, lead crystal, good china. So I applaud you for offering a way to keep some of these things out of the landfill. And your work is beautiful to boot!

  6. Penny O'Brien says

    All cool ideas! We have LOTS of these from winning awards at livestock shows (not complaining!) and it’s nice to find there is hope for them to have a second life!

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