Have you ever heard of the Giving Plate? It’s a plate that someone has made (or purchased) that is meant to have no owner. It is filled with a special treat or a favorite meal and passed along to someone else. They then eat the treats, fill the plate, and pass it to the next person. The Giving Plate makes the best gift for the holidays or can be a great housewarming gift for a family member or friend.
For those who haven’t tried this, maybe you can start a new tradition among your group of friends! Make a plate and pass it around this year, next year, and for years to come.
For the best results, find a plate that is microwave safe. Even if the plate says it’s also dishwasher safe, once you’ve designed your plate you don’t want to wash it in the dishwasher as the design will come off.
Originally Published On: December 14, 2017
Last Updated On: July 23, 2023
The Giving Plate Poem
This plate shall have no owner
for its journey NEVER ends,
it travels in a circle
of our FAMILY and FRIENDS.
It carries LOVE from home to home
For everyone to share,
The food that’s placed upon it
was made with love and care.
So please ENJOY what’s on the plate
Then fill it up again,
Then pass along the love it holds
to your family and friends!
Ok, so the poem pretty much explains the idea of the plate. Now how do you make one? It’s much easier than I thought it was going to be. The best part? You don’t have to be a super creative person to make one of these. If you can print out a full page template, cut it out, and trace it, then you can make your plate!
We had a MOPs (Mothers of Preschoolers) mom’s night out at one of our leader’s homes, and we all made our own plate. Since I wasn’t quite sure what I was doing, I started out simple. Our leader had suggested searching online for a template we want, but I completely forgot about that part. Luckily, she is an excellent planner and had a few ready for us to use.
She had everything we needed set up on some tables for us. The following are the supplies you need to make your own giving plate:
- Paper with a printed template
- Cheap ballpoint Pens
- Sharpie Markers (oil-based work best)
You’ll want to buy oil-based Sharpies, as the gel Sharpies tend to crackle after baking it in. We originally made these with regular Sharpies but the Sharpie didn’t hold up. After a few washes, it started to fade. The plates can be from the dollar store, as long as they are glass plates. Obviously, you probably want to start with a white plate since that will show the color the most. But there’s no reason you can’t start with a different color as well. No matter what color plate you use, you want to make sure to use a little bit of acetone to clean it before you start.
Step by Step
Once you have your printed template, you want to flip it over and use the pencil to cover the model with pencil lead. You want to make sure there is enough pencil on there, so give it a thick coat.
Then turn the template back the correct way, and cut close to the words or images, so you don’t have a lot of extra paper. Then use the tape and adhere the paper to the plate where you want it to go. Use a pen to trace the template, pushing as hard as you can. Trust me; your hand will be a little sore by the time you are done. Take your time. The harder you push, the more of the lead that will transfer to the plate, giving you your template.
Once you have the pencil marks on the plate, use the Sharpie markers to trace your template. If you make a mistake, you can use the acetone on a Q-tip to erase the Sharpie markers. Get creative, use as many colors as you want on the plate, and don’t hesitate to free-hand draw some accents around the plate. You can also write your name or the poem on the bottom of the dish.
After you finish your plate, let it cure for at least 24 hours. To set the color in, you need to bake the plate but do it carefully. Put your plate in the oven while it is at room temperature. Set the oven to 350F and then set a timer for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, turn the oven off and leave the plate in for a couple of hours until the oven has completely cooled. You want to make sure the plate doesn’t cool down too quickly, or the plate can crack.
Once the plate is completely cooled, you have your final product! Make sure to hand wash the plate because the dishwasher will quickly wash the marker off.
Have fun! You can also use this method to create any plate you want. I am working on a plate right now with the Hogwarts Crest on it, done the same way. I also want to get a few more plates so my boys can make their own “special” plates.
Here are some other ideas for plates that some of the moms made. For most of them, the center was done with a template, and the design around it was freehanded on the plates.