Complete your formal place settings with pieces from this collection of chargers. Select from gold-tone, silver-tone, or copper designs for upscale events, or choose a set in crisp white for a versatile addition to your serving collection. Pieces with scalloped or pleated edges offer a unique look for your table, and patterned designs coordinate beautifully with solid-color plates and bowls. Look for durable pieces crafted from stoneware or metal for everyday use, or opt for porcelain, bone china, or glass for special occasions. These pieces come in a range of colors and shapes, making it easy to find the perfect backdrop for your best china. Shop Overstock.com to find a vast selection of chargers from famous brands, such as Lenox, 10 Strawberry Street, and Old Dutch.
Charger Plates 101
What is a charger plate?
A charger plate is a decorative table accent much like a placemat that sits under the dinner plate and serves as a backdrop to each course. As a departure from traditional dinnerware, chargers can be made from an abundant variety of materials and decorated with substances that may be toxic if ingested, giving them vibrant color and luminous shine. The charger is not only a luxurious element of table decor, but it acts as a protective layer between the plate and the tablecloth, preserving your fine linens and keeping the surface free of crumbs, spills, and other messes.
Why should I use a charger plate?
Chargers have a long tradition of delivering extra dimension and lively color to a dinner table. It is most common to see charger plates at elegant occasions like weddings and holiday feasts, but they can also have a place in any type of gathering. A gleaming copper charger beneath some fine china can have a breathtaking effect on your dining decor, giving your table an extra touch of something graceful and refined for guests to enjoy. A charger also has a practical purpose similar to a placemat, allowing guests to move hot plates without burning their fingers and providing a barrier between the plate and your linens.
How to Use a Charger Plate
1. Coordinate Color Schemes
The charger plate acts as a sort of frame to the rest of your dinnerware, so color coordination is key. A gold brushed charger goes wonderfully with gold-rimmed dinner plates, while a wicker or wooden charger complements stoneware dishes or French country china with floral patterns due to versatile hues. Charger plates with patterns should be used with solid-color plates, and vice versa. Finding a set of chargers to pair perfectly with your dinnerware set is made a much easier task by searching online.
2. Choose the Right Size
Be sure to measure your dinner plates before selecting a charger set. A typical charger is 13-14 inches in diameter, which suits most standard round dinner plates. Chargers of different shapes can be found for square or rectangular plates as well. A charger should be seen around the edge of a dinner plate much like a picture frame, so choosing a charger an inch or so bigger than your plate is ideal. The size of a charger can also effect the arrangement of place settings, so if your table is humbler, a smaller charger would be appropriate.
3. Create Alignment
If creating a stunningly elegant table setting is an important part of your hosting duties, learning about alignment is time well spent. As a rule, charger plates should be placed at least one inch from the bottom edge of the table to create a streamlined look. This also helps in keeping hot dishes away from guests or in danger of toppling off the table. Alignment creates balance in your table, helping you to place centerpieces, table runners, silverware, and cups in all the right positions to make your table sophisticated and efficient.