Creative Ways to Upcycle Dishes with Lead Paint for DIY Home Decor

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Believe it or not, decorative dishware produced as late as 2004 has been found to contain lead paint. While no longer deemed safe for eating, you don’t have to toss your favorite vintage dishes. Instead try one of these creative ways to upcycle dishes with lead paint to create unique, DIY home decor!

Creative Ways to Upcycle Dishes with Decorative Lead Paint for DIY Home Decor on a Budget. Don't toss your vintage dishes with decorative lead paint. Try one of these creative ways to upcycle dishes instead to create unique, DIY home decor and garden art! While no longer deemed safe for eating, you don't have to toss your favorite vintage dishes. Instead try one of these creative ways to upcycle dishes with lead paint to create unique, DIY home decor!

Your Dishes May Not Be Food Safe!

I think most families have some Corelle dishes in their cupboards. They are a popular plate and dish brand thanks to their durability and trendy designs. Today, people covet the old styles, scouring flea markets and thrift stores to complete their collections.

I bought two sets of Corelle dishes years ago because I was sick of chipped or broken plates. Corelle plates are virtually indestructible, so they last for many, many years.

A word of warning though, if they do break, they shatter! You’ll be finding glass shards on the floor and in the next room for weeks.

Your beloved Corelle dishes may bring back fond memories of sitting around the dinner table with family and friends, but they may also be slowly deteriorating your body due to lead paint exposure.

Tamara Rubin, Lead Safe Mama, recently tested several vintage Corelle pieces and found lead paint in the decorative designs.

They are vintage, so it doesn’t apply to you, right? No, for these purposes vintage is anything before 2005. That’s only 15 years ago. Considering the durability of the plates and bowls, it’s definitely possible that your dishes are older than 2005.

In her article, Tamara shows screenshots of conversations with Corelle. Corelle states that lead paint was common in glazes and decorative designs before the 1990s. Corelle has not used lead paint for decorative designs since the “mid 2000s”. They recommend using any pieces made before 2005 to be used as decoration only.

Plain white plates are testing okay. The lead is found in the paint that was used for the design on plates. 

Creative Ways to Upcycle Dishes with Decorative Lead Paint for DIY Home Decor on a Budget. Don't toss your vintage dishes with decorative lead paint. Try one of these creative ways to upcycle dishes instead to create unique, DIY home decor and garden art! While no longer deemed safe for eating, you don't have to toss your favorite vintage dishes. Instead try one of these creative ways to upcycle dishes with lead paint to create unique, DIY home decor!

Creative Ways to Upcycle Dishes With Lead Paint

No one wants to just throw away their plates, but you can’t use them to eat off of. So what can you do with them?

There are a lot of ways to upcycle dishes and plates. You can use them in a number of ways to decorate your home both inside and outside. Following are some creative ways to upcycle dishes with lead paint.

Unique upcycled wall art ideas. The Elephant wall art decor from Sabotage900 illustrates a unique ways to upcycle vintage plates with decorative lead paint into whimsical DIY home decor.

Painted Elephant Wall Art via Sabotage900

Creative Way to Upcycle Dishes for Wall Decor

Hang Them on The Wall

If your plates have a decorative design, you can hang them on the wall. Many people hang them in their dining room or kitchen because, well, that’s where plates are used most often.

Don’t be limited to just food related rooms. Use a grouping of plates above the bed for a whimsical and fun grouping that won’t cost you anything.

Paint Plates for Unique DIY Art

If you don’t like the design of your plates, paint them! Painting plates is easy to do. Since you won’t be washing them, you can use acrylic paint or enamel and not have to worry about the paint being food safe or washable. You could even prime them and spray paint them if you want to completely change the color and design.

You can use a stencil or paint them freehand. This is a great way to get custom decor that matches the colors in your home.

Upcycling ideas for mismatched plates or vintage plates with decorative lead paint. This wall art idea from Sabotage900 on Etsy features an illustrated deer for fun & quirky, unique home decor using repurposed dishes.

This wall art idea from Sabotage900 features an illustrated deer for fun & quirky, unique home decor using repurposed dishes.

Upcycled wall decor ideas using thrift store finds. Creative ways to upcycle dishes with lead paint. Paint your vintage dishes for unique DIY wall decor like this octopus wall art from Homebody UA on Etsy.

I also really love this idea for Painted Plate Octopus Wall Art from Homebody UA for using groupings of painted plates to create unique, painted plate wall art for your home.

decorative hand painted plates with patterns

Or, you can paint a decorative pattern or a mandala design on your vintage plates as another way to upcycle your dishes.

Decorative plate with evergreen sprigs and berries for home decor

Decorate Without Painting

If you’re not artistic or don’t want to paint them, you can change the look of old plates with some greenery or flowers. Simply use hot glue to attach sprigs of flowers or greens and maybe a bow or some other decoration and hang the plate on the wall.

Decoupage Plates

If you don’t want to paint, decoupage your plates. Use patterned scrapbook paper to die cut or hand cut cute shapes. Animals and flowers are always popular.

You can also use fabric to decoupage plates. Either cut a shape or cover the entire plate with fabric like you would with the scrapbook paper.

Use Mod Podge to glue the paper to the plate. You can also use Mod Podge as a sealer to easier cleaning.

Chalkboard Sign

If your plate has a decorative edge, it might make cute chalkboard sign. Use chalk paint to paint the center and leave the pretty edge. Then hang on the wall or use a plate stand to display. You can change the sign easily for different holidays or use it for inspirational quotes.

This chalkboard style plate from Ranch Life Gifts illustrates a creative way to use chalk paint to upcycles your dishes with lead plate that are no longer food safe. Plus discover more creative ways to upcycle dishes with lead paint that are no longer food safe.

This chalkboard style plate from Ranch Life Gifts illustrates a cute way to use chalk paint to upcycle your dishes with lead plate that are no longer food safe. You can also use this same concept to create an upcycled plate, chalkboard countdown calendar for Christmas.

Creative ways to decorate your home with vintage dishes with decorative lead paint that are no longer food safe.

Upcycle Dishes to Use As a Backdrop

For more creative ways to upcycle dishes, use plates to decorate your mantel or on a desk or buffet table. Set a larger plate on a stand and then add candlesticks, vases, and other items in the same color scheme.

This is an easy and inexpensive way to decorate. Shop your own home for objects that would look cute grouped together.

Make Creative Centerpieces with Upcycled Dishes

Larger dinner plates or serving trays with lead paint can’t be used for food, but they can still be used as centerpiece. Add potpourri or flowers to make a cute centerpiece.

Change your centerpiece with the seasons by using pine cones, Easter eggs, or dried berries for Christmas.

Make Unique DIY Garden & Yard Art You can use plates, bowls, and cups in your yard, flower beds, or on your patio. For bowls, paint them red and add some white polka dots to create a cute mushroom for the yard like this example of vintage dish mushroom from Blue Cottage Creation.

Make Unique DIY Garden & Yard Art

You can use plates, bowls, and cups in your yard, flower beds, or on your patio. For bowls, paint them red and add some white polka dots to create a cute mushroom for the yard like this example of vintage dish mushrooms from Blue Cottage Creation.

You can also attach a coffee cup to the center of a dinner plate to make a flower. Attach to a stake and place in your yard or flower beds for whimsical flowers.

This upcycled plate flower from Tambrey the Repurposer is a great example of one of the many ways to upcycle dishes for garden art.

This upcycled plate flower from Tambrey the Repurposer is a great example of one of the many ways to upcycle dishes for garden art.

Upcycled bird bath from vintage dishes from Mscenna on Etsy

You can even make an upcycled vintage dish bird bath, like this example from MsCenna.

Upcycled vintage teacup bird feeder idea from GoGoGarden

Or craft a fun teacup bird feeder, similar to this upcycled teacup bird feeder from GoGo Garden, for another cute way to upcycle vintage dishes.

Craft a Tiered Stand for Organizing or Decor

If you have three plates that match or coordinate in varying sizes, you can create a tiered stand. Use the biggest plate on the bottom and add an upside down wine glass or even a piece of wood or a glass shot glass or short vase as a spacer. Then add the middle sized plate and another spacer and then the smallest plate.

E6000 is the best glue to use for glass. Don’t use this tiered stand for candy, but you can use it for flowers or other decorations and knick knacks.

Cute Way to Upcycle Dishes Into Planters

Upcycle bowls, tea cups or mugs as planters. I’m hesitant to plant in something that I know has lead paint, so I’d use a liner to hold the dirt and plant and set that inside the cup or bowl.

mosaic upcycled, teacup succulent wall planter from Peace by Piece Co.

For more way to upcycle dishes as planters, I really like this idea for a mosaic upcycled, teacup succulent wall planter from Peace by Piece Co. As well as this upcycled teacup, mosaic herb planter by Charming Deco Boutique.

Upcycle Dishes for Unique Home Lighting

While repurposed teacup candles are one of the more popular ways to upcycle dishes, this use is unfortunately not recommended other than for decorative purposes. As teacups aren’t designed to be reheated over and over again, like mason jars are, they can potentially explode while burning. 

However, you can upcycle your dishes to use as lamp bases and pendant lighting!

Upcycled teacup lamp from DAUSnGLO on etsy

I just love this idea for an upcycled teacup lamp from DAUSnGLO.

Creative Ways to Upcycle Dishes with Decorative Lead Paint for DIY Home Decor on a Budget. Don't toss your vintage dishes with decorative lead paint. Try one of these creative ways to upcycle dishes instead to create unique, DIY home decor and garden art! While no longer deemed safe for eating, you don't have to toss your favorite vintage dishes. Instead try one of these creative ways to upcycle dishes with lead paint to create unique, DIY home decor!

What are some of your favorite ways to upcycle dishes? I’d love to hear how you’ve repurposed your vintage dishes to create your own unique DIY home decor. So be sure to share your thoughts in the comments! And don’t forget to pin this post with creative ways to upcycle dishes for later reference.

Discover more creative ways to upcycle dishes, along with budget-friendly DIY home decor ideas, on my Pinterest boards. Or keep up with all of my DIY ideas by following me on social media. You can find me on facebooktwitter and instagram. You can also sign up to receive an email whenever I share a new post!

Things I Love Lately – DIY Crafts and Handmade Products I’m Ga Ga For

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I’m still not quite back into my regular routine of things since my vacation. And as I generally spend my weekends crafting and the weekdays blogging after my regular 9 to 5, I haven’t yet had a chance to whip up any new DIY projects or beauty recipes. While that means I’m just one short day away from giving those creative juices some time to run wild, it also means I won’t have any new bath and beauty recipes to share with you until the beginning of next week. But don’t fret. Life happens and as I’ve learned, it is what it is. In the meantime I hope you enjoy this little collection of diy crafts and handmade products that I’m a little ga ga over lately.

DIY Craft Projects I'm In Love with Lately - DIY Glitter Dipped Air Plant Holder, DIY Diorama Bookends, and DIY Vintage Book Tablet CoversDIY Craft Projects I Love Lately :: 1. DIY Glitter Dipped Air Plant Holder via 52 Weeks Project / 2. DIY Diorama Bookends via Sea of Shoes / 3. DIY Vintage Book Tablet Covers via Squirrel Junkie

Handmade products via etsy that I'm in love with lately - Creature cups, Hot air balloon gadget case, and totem animalsHandmade Products I Love Lately :: 1.  Creature Cup Set via Creature Cups / 2. Hot Air Balloon Gadget Case via Lazydoll / 3. Custom Baby Animal Totem via HandyMaiden

Unique Fun and Bright Handmade Products to Get Excited About - Moss Wars Terrarium, Stripey Pillow, and Washi Tape Cosmetic Pouch in Neon ColorsMore to Love Crafted By Hand :: 1. Princess Leia and Imperial Trooper Moss Terrarium via Moss Love Terrariums / 2 . Bright Multi-colored Stripey Accent Pillow via Geometric Electric / 3. Washi Tape Stripes Cosmetic Zipper Pouch via Allisa Jacobs

Which one is your favorite?

DIY Washi Tape Storage

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DIY Washi Tape Storage Box Idea for Easily Organizing Your Washi TapeNeed a simple DIY way to organize your washi tape? Upcycle boxes! This adorable and sturdy box from Beauty Army contained my monthly selection of beauty samples. However, once emptied it’s the perfect size for storing rolls of washi tape! You can stack several of these one on top of the other and label the outside of each box with the style of washi tape inside – chevron, argyle, solids, stripes, etc. – if you have a massive collection. (I’m not quite there yet.) How do you store your washi tape?

DIY Washi Tape Jars for Your Homemade Bath and Beauty Recipes

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DIY Washi Tape Jars for Your Homemade Bath and Beauty RecipesLooking for a clever way to store and gift your homemade bath and beauty recipes? Upcycle old jars and give them a personal touch with washi tape. It’s so incredibly easy to do, especially if you have nice amber jars left over from handmade soap and cosmetic products you’ve made. However, this will work on any smooth walled jars, so create a collection for a nice display or a homemade spa gift basket. The jar I made, used to have a sample of a body safe fragrance oil inside!

To make your own jars, simply wrap two to four layers of washi tape around the jar in rows. Start at the top of the jar and work your way day with a strip of washi tape wrapped one below the other. As different washi tapes have differing transparencies, you may need to wrap your strip of washi tape around your jar several times for each row so you can’t see any writing that you may be disguising underneath. Use a strip of washi tape that has labels on it, to write the name of the beauty treatment you plan to store inside. I bough these lovely patterned washi tapes from Cute Tape. I really enjoy the selection and the free shipping for larger orders.

Once you’ve decorated your jar or jars, it’s time to fill them up! This jar is perfect for housing my homemade argan oil infused bath melts and solid sugar scrub cubes as well as tiny guest flower shaped glycerin soaps. You could also fill it with a natural green tea & mint body scrub, peppermint scented bath salts, my natural sore muscle salt scrub, vanilla & patchouli scented bath salts, natural lavender & calendula milk bath, or an organic salt soak.

For more great homemade bath & body recipes, check out some of my other posts on Soap Deli News and be sure to follow my DIY Bath and Body Board on Pinterest! And don’t forget to follow Soap Deli News via Blog Lovin’ so you never miss a post!

DIY Mustache Wax for Men

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Handmade DIY Father's Day Gift Idea - Homemade Mustache Wax Recipe for MenComing up with a great handmade Father’s Day gift can be hard. So I’ve created a functional DIY Father’s Day gift that Dad that’s sure to be used year round. Granted, it’s only a great gift for dad if he has a mustache, but if your dad – or the man in your life – sports a ‘stache, this is a gift that’s sure to be appreciated. I had my boyfriend give it a test drive first to be sure and he really enjoyed the feel and scent in his mustache. (P.S. This makes a great homemade Christmas stocking stuffer gift as well!)

DIY Mustache Wax Recipe

© Rebecca’s Soap Delicatessen

Ingredients:

4 Tablespoons Beeswax, recommended or ( 2 Tablespoons Carnauba Wax)
3 Tablespoons Palm Kernel Flakes
3 Tablespoons Grape Seed Oil
3 Tablespoons Jojoba Oil
40 drops Frankincense Essential Oil
40 drops Pine Essential Oil

Directions:

Using a Tablespoon measurement, measure out level Tablespoons of the Beeswax or Carnauba Wax and Palm Kernel Flakes and place into a glass Pyrex measuring cup. Heat at reduced power in the microwave – I have a 1200 watt microwave and heated at 80% power for 3 1/2 minutes – until melted. Watch this closely to be sure your waxes don’t burn or boil. (In warmer climates you’ll need to increase palm kernel flakes to 4 Tbs. Also note that beeswax will offer more hold than carnauba wax as it’s sticker. Carnauba is simply offered as a vegan alternative.)

Now measure out the Grape Seed Oil and Jojoba Oil using a Tablespoon measurement and stir into your waxes – a knife works great for this! Add your essential oils, stir again, then pour into metal tins and allow to cool.

DIY Mustache Wax Recipe for Men - Easy Homemade Gift Idea for Dad for Father's Day or as a Christmas Stocking Stuffer

For my mustache wax I upcycled a metal tin with snowflakes on it that I had from Christmas. I simply decorated it with washi tape by wrapping it around the tin and then applying it onto the top of the lid and cutting off the excess.

You can also pair this gift with my DIY Natural Beard Conditioner for Men. For more great handmade gift ideas for men, be sure to follow my Father’s Day Gift Ideas board on Pinterest.