Tips and Guides

14 Ways to Store and Display Your Collection

Whether you are a serious collector of art and antiques, or multiples of everyday things, find a place for them in your home


Do you love to collect antiques, books, and other charming trinkets? If yes, then the challenge has always been how to store these valuable pieces. Aside from proper storage, you'd also want to display them so others can see and appreciate their value.

No need to fret and let these 14 ideas guide you:

Styling by Arlene-Sanchez Maslog. Photographed by Jun Pinzon. Production by Coni Tejada. Special thanks to Mrs. Nenet Nolasco.

Read the original article ("Show Off Your Latest Collection") in the October 2010 issue of Real Living Magazine. Download your digital copy of Real Living on the Real Living App ( now! Log on to for more details.  

1. Make use of cake stands. Cake stands are always a pretty way to display anything. A collection of mini plants are an interesting collection to keep indoors—place them in tiny ceramic vases or teacups and prop them on cake stands (top right). This also works for an orchid collection.
2. Use plates as wall accents. A collection of plates would look better displayed on a wall than stacked in your china cabinet. Use them to frame an entryway or archway. Use plate hooks or hangers (from hardware stores) and hang them. Group them by color or by pattern.
3. Use tiered letter stands for your paper collection. Use a tiered letter stand to display your collection and to remind you to pick up a pen and make someone smile with a written note.
4. Create artworks from your collection. A simple collection of shells or sand dollars would look nice mounted on sandpaper or hand-made paper and framed. Make a series and hang them or place them on a table. A big glass vase and glass trays are also great ways to keep bigger shells.
5. Reuse old kitchen supplies. Spruce up an old wooden plate rack with paint or varnish and use it to hold a postcard collection. Place them on your console or coffee table for you and even guests to enjoy and talk about.
6. Maximize different sizes of bauls. A collection of mini chests or bauls will always look good grouped together in one place. These bauls can actually contain a mini home depot! Place your stash of batteries and battery chargers in one, your screwdrivers and basic tools in the other or candles and matches in another one. Make your collection not only fun but also functional.
7. Turn your collection into a delightful centerpiece. Do not wait for guests to arrive before you bring out your collection of teapots. Group them together on a big tray and use them as centerpiece on your dinner or coffee table.
8. Organize your eco-bags. Are you secretly collecting eco-bags of all sizes, colors, and designs? Don’t let them languish in the back of closet, put them on display. Arrange them on a small tray or stool near your door so each family member can grab one for use on their way out.
9. Create a travel treasure chest. Use boxes to keep your travel souvenirs and photos if you don’t want them showcased in a glass cabinet. This way, you can just enjoy your trinkets whenever you want without having to worry about cleaning them up regularly. You may use one box for each place that you visit.
10. Use your collection as home décor. A small collection of snow globes can add an interesting detail to a small window. Make sure your window does not face east or west so direct sunlight won’t discolor or evaporate the water in them.
11. Display your collection in different areas of the house. Your collection of perfume bottles—whether full or empty—would look even better on a mirrored tray or against any mirror. Find a home for them in your powder room or bedroom.
12. Preserve milestones and memories. Organize your kids’ milestones and memorable events in old shoeboxes. It may be done by the event or by the year. Have fun with your kid and decorate them together, and keep them in a safe place. When your child has grown up, he can pick up these boxes and revisit good memories.
13. Utilize items found at home. Why not use your sugar bowls to organize your medicine cabinet or stash coins? Instead of letting them collect dust, this is a sweet and functional way to present this collection.
14. Tiny mason jars are charming storage solutions. Stash your sand, or pet rock collection in tiny mason jars. Label them. (Note: Always check if it’s OK to bring home sand, sometimes it’s illegal to take sand from some countries or locations.)

For more creative ideas on how to display your collections, check out

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