How to Hang a Plate on Tile Backsplash

Installing decorative plates on a tile backsplash can add visual interest and personality to your kitchen. With proper planning and technique, you can securely display plates on ceramic, stone, or glass tile. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to hang a plate on a tile backsplash.

Choosing the Right Plates

When selecting plates for a backsplash display, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Weight – Choose lightweight plates. Stoneware, bone china, or glazed ceramic plates are best. Avoid heavy dinner plates.
  • Style – Pick plates that match your kitchen’s aesthetic. Opt for solid colored or simply patterned plates for a clean look.
  • Size – Measure the area where you want to hang the plates. Opt for plates between 4 to 6 inches for easy installation. Large platters can be tricky to mount.
  • Value – Inexpensive thrift store plates or flea market finds are ideal. You don’t want to use passed down heirloom plates for this.
  • Durability – Don’t use antique or irreplaceable plates. Consider plates that are chip and crack resistant.

Selecting the Right Location

Carefully choose where to install the plate display:

  • Measure the backsplash area above the countertops or range.
  • Make sure there is enough open wall space to arrange the plates evenly. Allow 2-3 inches between plates.
  • Ensure the area is free of electrical outlets, switches or vents.
  • For safety, avoid areas above the stove or sink where plates could fall.
  • Mount plates at least 3-4 feet above the counter for visibility and access.

Securing Ceramic Plates to Tile Backsplash

Follow these steps to securely mount plates:

Clean the Tile Surface

Use isopropyl alcohol to thoroughly clean the backsplash area. This helps the adhesive stick to the tile.

Apply Adhesive Dots

Use clear removable adhesive dots, available at craft and hardware stores. Apply a dot to the back center and along the top and bottom edges of each plate.

Press the adhesive dots firmly for 30 seconds before mounting. This ensures a strong hold.

Attach Plates to Wall

Carefully press the plates onto the tile backsplash in your desired arrangement. Apply light pressure for 30 seconds to secure the plates in place.

Adjust the plate position as needed. The adhesive allows you to reposition the plates during this step.

Allow Adhesive to Cure

Let the plates cure on the wall for at least 24 hours before decorating around them. This allows the adhesive to fully bond to the tile and plates.

Check Adhesion

Gently wiggle each plate after curing to confirm plates are securely affixed to the wall. Reapply adhesive if corners lift up.

Decorate Surrounding Space

Once mounted, accentuate the plates with surrounding decor:

  • Paint the wall an accent color that complements the plates.
  • Add tile trim molding around the plates for a finished look.
  • Arrange faux greenery and vines between the plates.
  • Hang decorative candles, artwork or utensils near the display.
  • Install puck lights or sconces above the plates to highlight them.

Maintaining the Plate Wall Display

Follow these tips to keep your plate display looking fresh:

  • Use a feather duster to gently dust plates and prevent grime buildup.
  • Mist plates with glass cleaner and wipe carefully to clean. Avoid overspray.
  • Replace any damaged or fallen plates immediately to avoid loose gaps in arrangement.
  • Consider rotating plates seasonally for a new look. Gently remove by heating adhesive with a hairdryer.

Common Questions About Hanging Plates on Tile

How many adhesive dots should I use per plate?

Between 3 to 4 adhesive dots per plate are needed for adequate support. Apply 1 dot to the center back and 2 along the top and bottom edges. Larger or heavier plates may require 1-2 extra dots.

What about grout lines between the tiles?

The grout should not impact adhesion if the tile surface was cleaned properly before applying dots. Press plates firmly when mounting to ensure contact across grout lines.

Should I seal my tile before adding plates?

Sealing is not necessary. The removable adhesive will not stain or damage most tile finishes. Avoid adhesive on hand painted or antique tile.

What’s the best way to arrange plates?

There are many creative arrangements, such as grouping by color, size, or style. Try a symmetrical design or cluster plates randomly. Mixing patterns and solid plates adds interest.

What if a plate falls off?

Check that the backsplashes surface and plates were cleaned properly before applying adhesive. Also ensure the adhesive had time to cure for at least 24 hours. Re-mount the fallen plate with fresh adhesive.


Installing plates on a kitchen backsplash makes for easy-change decor. With the right plates, preparation, adhesive and technique, you can achieve a unique focal point in your kitchen. Carefully follow the steps for cleaning, applying adhesive dots, curing, and decorating. Refer to the tips above to safely hang and maintain a striking plate wall display.