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What To Do With Old Dinnerware What To Do With Old Dinnerware


What To Do With Old Dinnerware

Written by: Lily Evans

Looking for creative ways to repurpose your old tableware? Discover smart and stylish ideas for upcycling and giving your dinnerware a new lease on life.

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Are you wondering what to do with your old dinnerware? Maybe you’re redecorating your kitchen or simply looking to declutter your cabinets. Instead of tossing your old tableware in the trash, consider giving it a new lease on life. There are plenty of creative options available that will allow you to repurpose, donate, sell, recycle, or even use your old dinnerware for art projects.

In this article, we will explore different ways to make the most of your old dinnerware, providing you with options that are both environmentally friendly and potentially profitable. Whether you’re looking to add a unique touch to your home decor or want to find a new home for your tableware, we’ve got you covered.

Key Takeaways:

  • Give your old dinnerware a new lease on life by repurposing, donating, selling, recycling, or using them for art projects. Unleash your creativity and reduce waste in a sustainable and meaningful way.
  • Whether it’s creating wall art, donating to charity, or selling online, there are endless possibilities for your old dinnerware. Make a positive impact while adding a unique touch to your home.

Option 1: Repurpose Old Dinnerware

If you have old dinnerware that is no longer suitable for use at the table, repurposing it can be a fantastic alternative. Not only will you reduce waste, but you can also add a touch of creativity to your home decor. Here are some ideas to inspire you:

  • Wall Art: Transform your old plates into unique wall hangings. Arrange them in an interesting pattern, and secure them to the wall using plate hangers. This can create a stunning focal point in your dining room or kitchen.
  • Planters: Give your old teacups and mugs a new purpose by using them as planters. Succulents, herbs, or small flowering plants can add a touch of greenery to any space. Place them on a windowsill, shelf, or even in your garden.
  • Jewelry Holders: Miniature teacups and saucers can make adorable jewelry holders. Simply place rings, earrings, or other small accessories in the cup, and place the saucer beneath it to catch any loose items.
  • Candle Holders: Enhance the ambiance of your space by repurposing old teacups or bowls as candle holders. They can add a touch of vintage charm to your table setting or serve as decorative accents in your living room.
  • Serving Tray: Turn a larger plate or tray into a stylish serving piece. Place handles on the sides, or attach decorative knobs, to make it easier to carry. This repurposed dinnerware can be used to serve drinks, snacks, or even as a decorative centerpiece.

These are just a few ideas to get you started, but don’t limit your creativity. You can repurpose old dinnerware in countless ways, depending on your personal style and preferences. Just remember to use adhesive that is suitable for ceramic or porcelain to ensure your creations are long-lasting.

Option 2: Donate to Charity

If your old dinnerware is still in good condition but no longer needed or used, donating it to charity is a wonderful option. Many organizations and community-driven initiatives accept donations of household items, including kitchenware. Here’s how donating your old dinnerware can make a positive impact:

  • Help Those in Need: By donating your old dinnerware, you can provide essential items to individuals and families who may not have the means to afford them. Your donation can make a significant difference in their daily lives, allowing them to enjoy meals with dignity.
  • Support Second-Hand Stores: Donating your dinnerware to thrift stores or second-hand shops helps support their mission of providing affordable, quality items to the community. It creates a cycle of giving, as the funds generated from selling the donated items are often used to support various charitable purposes.
  • Reduce Waste: Instead of adding to the landfill, donating your old dinnerware ensures that it continues to be used and appreciated by someone else. This contributes to a more sustainable environment by reducing waste and promoting the circular economy.
  • Tax Benefits: In some regions, donating to registered non-profit organizations can offer tax benefits, as the value of your donation may be tax-deductible. Check with local tax authorities or the charity itself for specific guidelines and requirements.

When donating your old dinnerware, make sure it is clean, in good condition, and free from any chips or cracks that may affect its usability. Contact local charities, food banks, homeless shelters, or thrift stores to inquire about their donation guidelines and find the most suitable organization for your contribution.

Remember, by choosing to donate your old dinnerware, you not only declutter your home but also make a meaningful impact on the lives of others and contribute to the well-being of your community.

Option 3: Sell or Trade-In

If you have old dinnerware that is still in good condition but no longer serves your needs, selling or trading it in can be a lucrative option. Not only can you potentially make some extra cash, but you can also give your tableware a chance to be appreciated by someone else. Here’s how you can sell or trade-in your old dinnerware:

  • Online Marketplaces: Platforms such as eBay, Etsy, or even local classified websites provide a convenient way to sell your old dinnerware. Take clear photos of your items, write detailed descriptions, and set a competitive price to attract potential buyers.
  • Antique Shops: If your dinnerware has unique or antique value, consider visiting local antique shops or collectibles stores. They may be interested in purchasing or consigning your items, especially if they specialize in vintage tableware.
  • Tableware Exchanges: Explore specialized tableware exchanges or websites that allow you to trade in your old dinnerware for other items of interest. This way, you can enjoy the thrill of discovering new pieces while parting ways with the ones you no longer need.
  • Garage Sales or Flea Markets: If you prefer a more traditional approach, consider hosting a garage sale or participating in local flea markets. These events attract buyers who are on the lookout for unique and affordable finds, including dinnerware.

When selling or trading your old dinnerware, be sure to accurately describe its condition and any notable details, such as brand, pattern, or historical significance. Pack the items securely to prevent any damage during transportation.

Keep in mind that the value of your dinnerware may vary depending on factors such as age, brand, rarity, and demand. Research similar items or consult with experts to determine a fair asking price.

By selling or trading in your old dinnerware, you not only declutter your space and potentially make some money, but you also give others the opportunity to enjoy and cherish the pieces you once loved.

Consider repurposing old dinnerware instead of throwing it away. Use chipped plates as saucers for potted plants, turn bowls into decorative candle holders, or create a mosaic with broken pieces. This way, you can give new life to your old dinnerware and reduce waste.

Option 4: Recycle Old Dinnerware

If your old dinnerware is damaged, chipped, or no longer usable, recycling it is an environmentally responsible option. Recycling helps divert waste from landfills and allows the materials to be repurposed into new products. Here’s how you can recycle your old dinnerware:

  • Check Local Recycling Programs: Contact your local recycling center or municipality to inquire if they accept ceramics or glass for recycling. Some facilities have specific guidelines or designated drop-off locations for these materials.
  • Specialized Recycling Companies: Research recycling companies that specialize in processing ceramics or glass. These companies have the technology and expertise to recycle these materials efficiently and effectively.
  • DIY Projects: Get creative and repurpose your old dinnerware into DIY projects. While it may not be traditional recycling, it keeps the materials out of the landfill and gives them a new life. For example, you can break the plates into pieces and use them to create mosaic artwork or use the shards to add texture and design to a garden pathway or mosaic furniture.

When recycling ceramics or glass, it’s important to note that not all types can be recycled. Check with recycling facilities or companies for specific guidelines on what they accept.

If you’re unable to find a recycling option for your old dinnerware, you can consider upcycling it by repurposing it for other household uses. For instance, you can use chipped plates as saucers for potted plants or transform cracked mugs into pen holders or mini succulent planters.

Remember, recycling your old dinnerware contributes to the reduction of waste and the conservation of resources. It’s an active way to participate in sustainable practices and promote a greener future.

Option 5: Use for Art or Craft Projects

If you have a creative side, using your old dinnerware for art or craft projects is a fantastic way to give them a new purpose and add a personal touch to your home decor. Here are a few ideas to inspire you:

  • Mosaic Artwork: Break your old plates or bowls into small pieces and use them to create stunning mosaic artwork. You can make mosaic coasters, picture frames, or even a mosaic tabletop.
  • Painting and Decorating: Grab your paints and brushes and get creative! Use your old dinnerware as canvases and paint beautiful designs, patterns, or even landscapes on them. You can create unique decorative plates, bowls, or even wall hangings.
  • DIY Wind Chimes: Transform your old teacups or saucers into whimsical wind chimes. Drill a hole in the center of the plate or cup, thread a string through it, and attach beads or small bells to create a delightful sound when the wind blows.
  • Jewelry Making: Combine your love for jewelry and creativity by repurposing your old dinnerware into unique pieces. For example, you can use broken ceramic pieces for pendants or earrings, or create statement rings using old teaspoons or forks.
  • Garden Art: Spruce up your garden with art made from old dinnerware. Transform teapots into quirky flower pots or use colorful plates as stepping stones for a whimsical garden pathway.

When using old dinnerware for art or craft projects, make sure to use appropriate adhesives, paints, and sealants for a long-lasting finish. Additionally, consider using safety goggles and gloves when breaking or drilling the dinnerware to protect yourself from any potential injuries.

Remember, the possibilities are endless when it comes to using old dinnerware for art or craft projects. Let your imagination run wild, and enjoy the process of creating unique and meaningful pieces that reflect your personal style.


When faced with old dinnerware that is no longer needed or suitable for use, there are plenty of options beyond simply throwing it away. By repurposing, donating, selling, recycling, or using your old dinnerware for art and craft projects, you can give these items a new lease on life while reducing waste and adding a creative touch to your home.

Repurposing old dinnerware allows you to tap into your creativity and transform them into unique pieces of artwork or functional decor items. From wall art and planters to jewelry holders and candle holders, the possibilities are endless.

Donating your old dinnerware to charity helps those in need and supports community-driven initiatives. By giving your tableware a new home, you contribute to a more sustainable environment and ensure that these items continue to be used and appreciated.

If your old dinnerware is still in good condition, consider selling or trading it in. Online marketplaces, antique shops, and tableware exchanges provide opportunities to earn some extra cash and allow someone else to enjoy the beauty of your pieces.

When your old dinnerware is damaged beyond repair, recycling it is the environmentally responsible choice. Check with local recycling programs or specialized recycling companies to ensure proper disposal.

Lastly, using your old dinnerware for art or craft projects lets your creativity shine. From mosaic artwork and painted plates to wind chimes and jewelry, you can give new life to these items by incorporating them into your artistic endeavors.

Whatever option you choose, remember that each decision you make regarding your old dinnerware can have a positive impact. Whether it’s adding a personal touch to your home, supporting charitable causes, or contributing to a greener future, the possibilities are truly endless.

So, the next time you find yourself with old dinnerware, think outside the box and explore these options. Embrace the opportunity to unleash your creativity, make a difference, and make the most of your old tableware.

Frequently Asked Questions about What To Do With Old Dinnerware

Can old dinnerware be recycled?

Yes, old dinnerware can be recycled in some cases. However, it’s important to check with your local recycling facility to see if they accept ceramics or porcelain. If they do, make sure to clean the dinnerware thoroughly before recycling.
What are some creative ways to repurpose old dinnerware?

There are plenty of creative ways to repurpose old dinnerware! You can turn old plates into decorative wall art, use them as serving trays for organizing jewelry or trinkets, or even transform them into unique plant saucers for your indoor garden.
Is it possible to donate old dinnerware?

Absolutely! Many local charities, thrift stores, or shelters would be more than happy to accept donations of old dinnerware. Just make sure that the dinnerware is in good condition and thoroughly cleaned before donating.
Can old dinnerware be used for crafts?

Yes, old dinnerware can be used for a variety of crafts. You can break them into mosaic pieces for art projects, create one-of-a-kind mosaic tabletops, or even make personalized coasters. The possibilities are endless!
What should I do with chipped or cracked old dinnerware?

If your old dinnerware is chipped or cracked, consider using them for gardening purposes. You can break them into smaller pieces and use them as drainage at the bottom of plant pots, or even create a unique garden border by burying the broken pieces along the edges of your flower beds.

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