HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >


Are there any disadvantages or cons about square plates??? [moved from Not About Food]

This might get moved to cookware but wasn't sure where to put this. We are renovating our kitchen I ditched the old dishes and might like to go with square - white of course. I can't think of any negatives. So - squared dishes????

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I admire them but think I might get tired of them after a while. Plus, to me, they're quite contemporary and that would limit me in how I want to set my table. I have thought about picking up 6 or 8 real cheap ones.

    6 Replies
    1. re: c oliver

      hmmmmm, good point. I still have a lot of time to ponder, it's going to be a long process!

      1. re: c oliver

        I picked up 6 square dishes and one rectangular 3-section serving dish (all in white) fairly inexpensively at a nearby outlet store. I use them when my menu is Asian. I can't imagine serving pasta, steak or even roast chicken on the square dishes.

        1. re: CindyJ

          That's what I'm thinking. I believe Target may have them but not sure. I agree with you that the shape isn't for every dish/dinner. I like contemporary and traditional so my plain, white round can go either way. But I was recently really, really tempted by two huge serving pieces, one solid poppy red and the other big splashy red flowers. They were also, for me, quite expensive and I just couldn't justify the price. My table decor is more determined by the flatware, napkins, rings, candleholders, etc. But if I had the room to store and the money like Martha Stewart, I'd have all sorts of things :)

          1. re: c oliver

            I've mentioned this before on CH, but I like to buy open stock pieces, rather than whole sets (after all how many cups and saucers or mugs do you really need?), and I'm able to change the look of my table often and relatively inexpensively. I also mix and match colors with my basic everyday white set. I'll use blue salad plates on top of white dinner plates, or yellow soup bowls with the white dinner plates, or I'll use those same blue salad plates on top of some hand-painted dinner plates I bought in Italy. The Pottery Barn outlet often has has nice open stock pieces. I use candles and/or flowers bring out the accent colors, too.

            Those square white plates look really nice on top of some bamboo place mats I bought at BB&B for $1.99 each. The mats have black trim, so I also bought inexpensive black napkins. Yes, storage does sometimes present a problem, but the pieces I don't use often get stored in the basement or on a top cabinet shelf.

            1. re: CindyJ

              I have NO cups and saucers :) And, yes, plenty of serving pieces of all shapes and colors. Mix n match is MY friend.

              1. re: c oliver

                I even gave away the mugs that came with my white Dansk dinnerware set. They were nice; I just didn't need them.

      2. I must say that pasta looks better on a circular dish (at least in my opinion...)

        8 Replies
        1. re: kpaxonite

          Wow, never thought of that. But, yeah, I've never seen square pasta bowls.

          1. re: c oliver

            I really like Berndaud's Fusion White line. I use the square rim soup bowls for pasta and really like the look, http://www1.bloomingdales.com/catalog...
            While I have a lot of square and rectangular pieces, I like to mix it up with a variety of shapes, including round. I also really like the Zanzibar shape:

              1. re: souvenir

                That Fusion White is really beautiful. Also quite pricey.

                1. re: CindyJ

                  The prices have really jumped. The rise of the euro and limits to carry on luggage have pretty much stopped my buying more in France. Occasionally I have good luck on ebay.

                  1. re: souvenir

                    the euro is at its lowest in ten months...

                    1. re: kpaxonite

                      Wow, I just checked and it's USD1.36. That's great. Maybe we can go to France this year after all.

                      1. re: kpaxonite

                        Yes. I just have a hard time thinking of that as low when most of the pieces I bought were when the euro was well under a dollar.

            1. I find it more difficult to plate food in an aesthetically pleasing way on a square plate, but perhaps that's just me.

              5 Replies
              1. re: visciole

                I think salads are a notable exception, and they are easier to eat with the increased surface area (im talking about dinner salads..)

                1. re: kpaxonite

                  So could we mix square and round plates and bowls? Now, I'm getting interested.

                    1. re: kpaxonite

                      Woo hoo! I'm getting dizzy. Ya know, that could actually be a fun table. Find some hexagonal bowls, etc.

                    2. re: c oliver

                      i'm a fan of also blending in oval bowls.....

                2. I actually just purchased a square dish set yesterday. It is for our new sailboat and I didn't want the melamine nautical ones. They stack nicely and being square - will fit better in the cupboards on board. We had people over for dinner last night and tried them out - well received. I see no draw back - if you like something I wouldn't worry about it going out of style very quickly and if it does you can always buy something else :)

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: juliewong

                    "should go out of style very quickly and if it does you can always buy something else :)"

                    You can but not everyone can or even likes that mindset.

                    1. re: c oliver

                      In my mind, there is no such thing as something I like going out of style ;)

                      I have vintage square plates (and bowls) with scalloped corners (from the 30s) and find them very versatile. Granted, they are not a stark square.

                      I do have multiple dinnerware patterns ... I keep my pots and pans very streamlined so I have lots of room for the fun stuff :) You don't have to be Martha Stewart ...

                  2. Square plates have their uses, but I find round plates to be more versatile. More types of foods look nicer on them.

                    1. Interestingly, I just noticed that our pasta bowls are squarish. They're white crockery with different fruit painted in each one, and stmped made in Italy.

                      1. this is great feedback, keep it coming. I think I am swaying towards standard round dishes and bowls, with the funky shapes for serving dishes. Hubby definately threw in his opinion about squarish bowls - so that's out!!! I'm thinking I'd rather spend the money I saved on color in napkins, candles, table decor, etc.

                        I was thinking more along storage, dishwasher, etc when I started this thought about square but more is coming out, thanks!

                        1. Have you considered oval dishes? I have & love the Ursula dishes from Georg Jensen. Clean, pure design, soft alluring colors, space saving to store, makes an elegant table, one you don't see everywhere...I also love the cups & bowls....


                          1. Square is nice and gives interesting options for plating, but it depends on how much you enjoy restaurant service plating. If you're into the communal table thing or just plop things, either don't bother or buy something on the cheap.

                            I like plating and I rarely do family-style service so I've got square plates on the acquisition list (two sizes). They'll complement the rectangles and circles (no triangles - hard to work with and Bousquet doesn't make them).

                            1. i'm mostly reiterating what has been said here, but i think the only con i've found with square plates is that you do have to consider your composition slightly more when plating. i don't find it terribly more difficult though and am very happy to eat roast chicken off of them ;)

                              from another angle though, i've found that some round plates are more likely to have a dip in the centre and sauces will naturally pool there when i don't want them to. at the edges, square plates often have a significant enough lip that any spills and mishaps are negligible.

                              i know your husband has nixed square bowls... but i've got to say that the thomas loft white square bowls are what won me completely over to the line. they have a lovely slight curve upwards that really gives it an extra edge of detail for a modern set. they also have oval bowls which i adore. all noodles and pasta like dishes MUST be served in round bowls for me, all the better to cradle when i gorge, and so i have a separate stack of medium/large sized round bowls for that.

                              and also mentioned, rectangles... are fab. especially for more formal presentations when food isn't mounded in the centre. i could just be a fan of nice linear styling...

                              1. The corners are easier to chip than plates without corners....

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: Karl S

                                  because circular plates have no corners? lol

                                  In all seriousness Im not completely sure if I agree... circulatar plates can get chiped when dropped too ...

                                  1. re: kpaxonite

                                    I didn't say circular plates can't get chipped. And chips don't only happen by dropping - in fact, that's not the usual way that chips happen. Corners are by nature more easily exposed to chipping (as a nose is easier to injure than a cheek, for example, or an elbow is than a bicep). Been there, done that. Just passing on the experience, since it seemed relevant to the OP's query...

                                    1. re: Karl S

                                      I agree with you. I have a number of serving pieces that are square and rectangular. Those corners are an accident waiting to happen :)

                                2. I've had a set of square plates for the past few years (2003? or so). Looks great, works well. Everyone seems to like them.

                                  They are easier to chip than round plates, and you have to make sure your dishwasher can fit them. My older dishwashers had some problems with the big dinner plates, they only fit in certain areas of the dishwasher. If you stack carelessly, the square plates are going to chip in the dishwasher as stuff moves around.

                                  When other kitchen items fall or drop on the plate edge, the square plates chip, whereas most round plates will deflect them off at an angle.

                                  1. I love my square Corelle plates. I am probably not as concerned with the aesthetic nature of using square versus round plates. I enjoyed them so much I have the square dinner plates, lunch plates, and the bowls.

                                    I hope to actually get the Square Simple Lines by Corelle sometime this year.