Stanley Tucci's kitchen plate display is effortlessly chic and a big emerging trend for 2025

It's the simplest way to spruce up your kitchen and make use of crockery

A kitchen with a plate display
(Image credit: Future/Heather Young)

Styling a kitchen likely isn't top of your radar in a cooking space where practicality comes first. In place of rugs and accessories, the focus instead turns to utensil storage and pantries, but to create a kitchen you want to spend time in the key is to combine both fashion and function.

Luckily, there is a solution to this dilemma. We've been seeing plate walls all over social media but the latest, and easier, twist on the trend we spied in Stanley Tucci's kitchen is to style them on open shelving. Kitchen shelving is one of the simplest ways to add character to a cooking space, and Stanley Tucci's open shelving recently caught our eye on Instagram (as the arbiter of taste when it comes to all things kitchens), adding a chic border to the top of his cabinets and conveniently showcasing seasonal crockery.

Pretty plates often end up dust-covered in a hidden-away cupboard so keeping them styled on a shelf will remind you they're there and zhuzh up your kitchen.

How to style plates on a kitchen shelf

A kitchen with a plate display

(Image credit: Future PLC/Carolyn Barber)

What Stanley Tucci does, we follow. So when we spotted another stylish feature in his lust-worthy kitchen, we knew we had to figure out how to recreate it. As it turns out, a plate shelf like his is easy to achieve - it just requires a couple of styling tips.

In this reel, we see Tucci preparing cocktails on his kitchen island with the plate shelf running horizontally behind him, above cupboards.

A post shared by Stanley Tucci

A photo posted by stanleytucci on

The best part of this kitchen styling idea is that it can be incredibly affordable as you can find a lot of decorative plates secondhand for next-to-nothing.

'I love decorative plates hung on a wall or propped on an open shelf. Why restrict beautiful and often sentimental pieces to the bottom of a cupboard or for eating dinner off?' says Lucy Ward, VP of Vinterior.

'You can simply prop the plates on an open shelf against a wall or use discreet metal plate stands. Keep in mind the depth of the plate when searching, flatter plates are easier to prop up or hang than deeper plates like say a pasta bowl,' she continues.

But should you just use the seasonal crockery you already own or look to create a theme with your on-show plates?

'When it comes to styles, I’d mismatch the plates but pick ones that complement the colours of the space so there is a thread to connect everything. Currently, im coveting one of these rather special Gustave Reynaud ceramic plates accompanied by a selection of handpainted Spanish dishes,' Lucy recommends.

A white kitchen with a patterned tiled splashback

(Image credit: Future PLC)

If you have open shelving ready for plates to sit centre stage, just make sure there is a lip for them to rest against so that they stay firmly in place.

If your still want them on display but don't want to follow in Stanley Tucci's footsteps, there are a few other options for showcasing your crockery on your walls.

'In the kitchen, use a pre-loved wall-mounted plate rack as this is a practical and beautiful way to display them,' recommends Lucy from Vinterior. This works particularly well in traditional kitchen ideas where you want a slightly rustic, lived-in look.

Alternatively, using these plate hanging stickers from Amazon makes it simple to create a mis-matched look straight on your walls. They're secure, easy to adhere and remove and give you plenty of flexibility to create your very own design.

kitchen room with designed plates on white wall and white tiles wall plants pot on counter and fruits in bowl

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Fiona Walker)

Using the ideal gallery wall measurements, you can simply map out on a work surface the formation you want the plates to sit in before replicating this on your wall. The beauty is that you don't need to be exact as it creates a more eclectic design.

Ideal Home's Editor-in-Chief, Heather Young, also explains 'When styling up the plates on my shelves, I like to use them as an anchor point for a mini vignette. I place my chosen plate behind a grouping of smaller objects such as a candle or small bowl, much as you would with a piece of framed art.'

But if you want to work with your open shelving and go for the leaning-look then we recommend following Tucci's lead. Whether you choose to showcase crockery from your travels, go trawling for antique finds or splurge on a special new purchase, our top picks may offer inspiration on what to go for.

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How would you style your plate shelf?

Holly Cockburn
Content Editor

After starting out her journey at Future as a Features Editor on Top Ten Reviews, Holly is now a Content Editor at Ideal Home, writing about the best interior ideas and news. At Top Ten Reviews, she focussed on TikTok viral cleaning hacks as well as how to take care of investment purchases such as lawn mowers, washing machines and vacuum cleaners. Prior to this, Holly was apart of the editorial team at Howdens which sparked her interest in interior design, and more specifically, kitchens (Shaker is her favourite!).