Decorating Ideas for Old License Plates

Use license plates as creative wall decor.
Use license plates as creative wall decor. (Image: license plates image by timur1970 from

If you collect vintage license plates, use them to create fresh and interesting decor items. Infuse any room in your home with colorful vintage license plates. If you don't have any plates but want to use them to make inspired wall or any other type of decor, scour flea markets and antique stores for the popular collectible items.

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License Plate Collage

Compile vintage license plates into a collage formation to use as eye-catching wall decor. Use the collage to show off states you have visited, or ones you plan to explore in the future. Display just one state's licenses plates to showcase how the design has changed over the year. A vacation-inspired collage is another idea--make an arrangement showing all of the states you drove through on a recent road trip. Use a hot glue gun or screws and a screwdriver to attach the old plates to a piece of plywood or any other scrap wood. Attach a bracket to the back of the wood so you can hang the collage on any wall in your home.

Magnetic Board

Use retro license plates to create a decorative and useful magnetic board, ideal for children's rooms, kitchens, dens, offices and libraries. Use a hot glue gun or screwdriver to arrange the plates onto a piece of plywood. If you want to create a frame for the magnetic board, miter a piece of beadboard into a frame shape and fasten it to the plywood prior to attaching the plates. Enhance the board with road-inspired magnets in car, truck, semi, train, tire and vintage hotel shapes. Use the board to conveniently display grocery lists, children's artwork, school or work schedules, an inspirational quote or a favorite poem.

Storage Space Enhancements

Use the whimsical vintage license plates to enhance plain storage spaces in an inspired way. Attach a plate to the binder side of a wooden magazine or folder file; the license plate will be in view when you display the file on a work desk. Glue plates all around a wooden storage chest that is a living room or bedroom eyesore. Decorate the sides of a worn wooden bookcase with a menagerie of colorful retro license plates. License plates are ideal garage decor pieces; use them to liven up the drab car and tool storage space. Glue the plates to the top of a work tool bench, or onto the sides of a wall storage shelf.


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