I’ve been working on an idea for interchangeable holiday charger plates. My mom used to do a lot of tole painting when I was younger. That’s painting on wood, if you aren’t familiar. She doesn’t anymore, but a good portion of her holiday decorations are homemade. She has one that stays out all year. It’s a bear that hangs on the wall, and he changes his clothes for the holidays and different seasons. That’s my inspiration. A plate that changes clothes. This is not necessarily related, but my neighbor does this with pallets. Where does she put them?! I honestly don’t know, but luckily charger plates are much easier to store.
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How to Make Interchangeable Holiday Charger Plates
What You Need
For my charger plates, I went gold, but obviously you can pick whatever you want. As for the fabric, you can order giant bundles on Amazon, but I just went to JoAnn when they had a sale and found ones that seemed in season.
What to Do
I would love to tell you this is quick and you’ll be done in ten minutes, but you probably won’t unless you’re only doing one interchangeable holiday charger plate. It’s not difficult, but I had to do this while my son ran around with my fabric on his head. Plus I had to take pictures for you lovely folks. Then I had a call with a client.You see? I really am always in a frenzy. Anyway…
Choose some shapes for each holiday. I did four: a pumpkin for Halloween, a leaf for Thanksgiving, a tree for Christmas, and a heart for Valentine’s Day. You can find some images on your computer or pick up die-cuts or something. I free-handed them though, because, you know, time. To make sure they’re all similar sizes, draw them on the cardboard in the center of the fat quarters.
Cut out your cardboard shapes. Your fabric is going to come in little squares, and if you unfold it you should be able to see if your drawings will fit on the squares or not (All my pictures are below so you can see what I mean). If they do, you can cut off a strip and fold it up into fours. If they don’t, you’ll want to cut the fabric into four different squares and staple them together. Then you’re going to staple your shape onto the fabric and cut around it. It will give you four shapes at once. It’s really easy, I swear, but if you’re uncomfortable with that, just use the cardboard as a stencil and trace the image onto the fabric. Then you can cut them individually. Do this for each shape. You do need them all done before you go to the Velcro.
Now you have a whole bunch of little shapes, right? From here it’s time to figure out where to put the Velcro. Go ahead and put either the hook or loop (the sharp or the soft if you’re not familiar with the term – I had to look it up) of a Velcro dot in the center of one plate. Then put the opposite side onto the center of one of your shapes. Then do one for each holiday. So, for my four choices, that meant starting with one hook dot on the plate, followed by one loop dot on the tree, then one on the pumpkin, one on the heart, and one on the leaf. Yes, you will be using a lot more of one side of Velcro than another.
Right now you technically have interchangeable holiday charger plates, but they’re kind of floppy, right? So you’ll need to add a second Velcro dot, which is why it was important for you to do one of each shape instead of all of one shape. To add the second dot to the plate, pick your skinniest shape (the tree in my case) and find the furthest spot from the center where you could put the dot without making it visible. Then put the dot on there. Don’t let the placement stress you out; they’re pretty moveable in the beginning. Now you’ll want to go through and attach each shape to the center part and see where the dot lines up. Some of the shapes will be upside down from others for best placement, FYI.
Put Velcro and each and every fabric shape. Then do the other plates by simply putting the opposite Velcro on one shape and then sticking it to the plate. This is the most time consuming part, but after the first two it’s pretty mindless. Also, unless you are a really careful Velcro remover, you’ll probably want to use a bit of fabric glue to make sure the Velcro stays on the fabric for a long time. It should stay on the plate without anything else, but if you’re worried use some super glue. Then you’re done! Nice, not really that fancy, interchangeable holiday charger plates.
Basically the Same Instructions, only Visual
All done! Now Display your Interchangeable Holiday Charger Plates.
You can put them out on the table. Regular plates fit on them just fine. The Velcro isn’t thick enough to make it weird. You can also use just one plate and display it in a plate stand. That’s what I’ve been doing; normally I have a wedding plate displayed, but I’ve been mixing it up for the holidays. If you’ve read my work, you know I prefer simple decorations, and even though this could potentially take a little longer than most of my ideas, I like it because you can use it every year multiple times. Let me know in the comments if these instructions aren’t clear – I wrote Velcro too many times and now everything sounds crazy. Anyway, enjoy your holidays!
Other holiday decor ideas