Prudent Baby has gone and done it! A totally cute DIY Tray with a million uses and a bajillion ways to customize!
We love great gifts, we love tidying up our homes, and we love totally doable crafts! Let’s do this!
Please click here to visit Prudent Baby and see the instructions that we followed!
Reviewer #1 – Maren
Mission: I love to be organized, and I have wanted to try out a project with Mod Podge – I have never used it before! By the looks of it, this tray could be personalized in so many ways, I was really excited to dive in!
- Americana Gloss Enamels acrylic paint in White
- Delta Creative Ceramcoat Gleams acrylic paint in Pearl Finish
- Loew-Cornell Flat Wash Brush 1/2″
- Martha’s Sprayable Gloss Enamel Finish
- I decided to use a piece of pretty fabric that I had on hand, instead of paper.
- I used my Fiskars Rotary Cutting Set (which I love) to trim the fabric to fit perfectly inside of my tray.
- Mod Podge Hard Coat in Satin Finish.
Tips & Tricks Learned:
I started with a unfinished tray from Michaels. First, I painted it white with enamel acrylic paint in White. I then added a coat of acrylic paint in Pearl Finish that I have fallen in love with after our Faux Zinc Letters! Lastly, I added a coat of my other new favorite thing (discovered when we turned Ugly to Chic!), Martha’s Sprayable Gloss Enamel Finish. A lot of steps, but I love my shiney, pearly white tray!
One thing that I would do differently, would be to lightly sand the tray before painting. I did have a few rough spots that would have looked much nicer if I had smoothed them out first.
I have a Fiskars Rotary Cutting Set which is PERFECT for any fabric cutting – not just quilting (which I don’t do). A quick measurement and I had a perfectly fitting piece of fabric!
I applied the Mod Podge a little at a time, so that I could make sure that I was placing my piece of fabric evenly onto the tray. I then smoothed out as I went along and it worked out great! I then added a couple more coats for good measure! The cool thing about the Mod Podge that I got, is that after letting it “cure” for 21 days, it will be water resistant! AND the Gloss Enamel Finish is suitable for outdoors! Perfect for the clumbsy gal who will probably spill the drinks that she’s carrying on it more than a couple of times!
Frickin’ LOVE this thing. There are SO many ways to make this project your own!
Future house guests be warned, there may be one in every room.
I am a huge fan! With all of the differnent ways that you can customize this crafty little number, this project would be the perfect homemade gift. You could add a monogram for a hostess gift, use coordinating colors for a friends new home, or just fill with goodies like Prudent Baby did for a new mom! I’ll be making more!
Reviewer #2 – Amanda
Mission: Create a lovely little tray my kiddos could enjoy.
- I chose to use a cute little Melissa and Doug wooden tray that my kids had in their play kitchen.
- I did deviate a little and used a piece of cotton fabric (actually a rectangle with “Perfect Edges” to be exact from another Crafty Collaborative project).
- I also used Spray Mod Podge instead of the traditional paint-on version. I am not saying this was wise, just saying.
- I primed the raw wooden frame using Rustoleum Painters Touch Ultra Cover Primer.
- My paint of choice was an adorable Krylon Indoor/Outdoor Paint in Watermelon.
Tips & Tricks Learned:
ALWAYS read instructions. I did not read the instructions on the Watermelon Krylon Spray Paint and regretted it immediately. I pulled the little plastic piece out of the nozzle thinking it didn’t belong there only to realize after spraying a coat that it MOST DEFINITELY belonged there. I ended up with this horrible, thick coat of paint that wouldn’t stick which was strange. Thankfully coat two SEEMED to cover that ick up.
Things went horribly wrong when I applied the Spray Mod Podge however. It looked fine at the time but when it dried it became cracked and bubbly. Really disappointed me but my kids thought it looked great.
Fairly simple craft with great end results if done correctly.
Can get expensive so try to use up old spray paint you have lying around instead of starting from scratch.
I will definitely make this again even though my results were a total bomb (and not like “da bomb” either). I would definitely use craft paper next time and would probably not choose to use the Spray Mod Podge either. It really seemed to create more issues than convenience like I had hoped for.
Reviewer #3 – Sheri
Mission: My first thought for this project when we found it on Prudent Baby was that I have the PERFECT tray for this. Our Friday Night Movie Night tray was in dire need of a facelift. My second thought, “What the hell is Mod Podge?” I’m a Mod Podge virgin.
I already had a tray that needed a little bit of love. All I needed to get was Mod Podge and some pretty paper. I didn’t paint the sides of my tray because they have a good finish and I like the natural wood with the leather handles.
Tips & Tricks Learned:
Get an entire piece of paper that fits the tray properly…unless you don’t mind seams. The seams made it harder for me to get all the bubbles out.
Easy and cheap little fix. Mod Podge is fabulous!
None, unless you count you have to wash a paintbrush.
Mod Podge has just found a new fan. My wheels are turning on all the other projects I could do with this stuff! This was an easy little upgrade to my tired looking tray. The boys are all excited to have “new” tray for Movie Night. I’m just a little bummed that I couldn’t find paper that fit the size tray I had. I don’t like seeing the seams. I am actually contemplating going right over it all with a piece of wrapping paper. We’ll see.
Reviewer #4 – Kristy
Mission: When I saw this tray, I knew I wanted to create one for myself. I also think the trays would make great gifts!
- I searched Michaels and Joann for an unfinished tray and I didn’t find what I was looking for. I ended up finding a tray that was already decorated at Joann and making it my own.
- I had originally planned to paint the tray sea foam green but then I had decided to leave it. This tray is great in the original wood stain and would go nicely with paper that I chose.
- When at Michaels, I chose 2 hard stock custom sheets of paper to use for the project. There were tons to choose from so get creative!
- Since I had to combine 2 pieces of paper to cover the bottom of the tray, I also purchased a dark contrasting ribbon to cover the lines.
- Of course, don’t forget the Mod Podge, cutting board, ruler and x-acto knife!
- Instead of a paint brush, I used a Sponge Brush. I scored 20 brushes at 5 cents each from Michaels! Awesome, they are great for all projects!
Tips & Tricks Learned:
The best way to cut the paper is by using a professional cutter with the grid lines, I have one at work because I just wasn’t getting my lines straight and I was impatient. Go figure!
Follow the directions! Ha, I am terrible at this. I was in such a rush to see the final project that I didn’t slowly place the paper on the Mod Podge while pressing the air bubbles out. Once it’s stuck, it’s pretty much stuck. I had to lift mine to get it straight and remove air bubbles. By doing this I had to add additional Mod Podge and I was worried the paper would tear from being soft.
Simple and cute! It’s is such a multipurpose project! You can make a tray for so many reasons and in so many creative ways!
This project may drive the perfectionist types absolutely crazy, as I even found myself going a little crazy trying to get the paper to fit just perfectly and trying to remove all of those air bubbles.
Loved it! If I had the need for more trays then I would definitely make more! Will make a perfect gift… especially to my clients for house warming gifts! I am already thinking of creative ideas to personalize them for the new homeowners. When I decided not to paint the tray, it’s because it will be perfect to hold one of our upcoming projects! You absolutely don’t want to miss what we have coming up this Fall!
Reviewer #5 – Janet
Mission: To make a cute and handy little tray that is as cute as it is functional.
- Wooden tray from Michaels
- One sheet of scrapbook/decorative paper
- 2 bottles of Martha Stuart Satin Craft Paint in Adobo
Also… I couldn’t help myself after looking at all of Martha’s craft goodies! I grabbed a few more items to add a little something extra to my tray:
- Martha Stuart adhesive stencils Martha Stuart Adhesive Stencils
- 1 bottle of Martha Stuart Satin Craft Paint in Putty
Tips & Tricks Learned:
If I were to do it again, I would use a fine grade sandpaper to smooth out the handles and edges of the wood before painting. One 2 oz bottle of paint is enough, unless you really want to coat that sucker.
Don’t be afraid to slather a lot on the first coat on Mod Podge before laying the paper down, and be sure to smooth out the paper when you do put it down. Put about 3 topcoats on, allowing each coat to dry before applying the next one.
Simple project, allows for creativity and added touches, and actually will get some use out of it.
If you’re looking for something more fancy or expensive-looking to decorate your home, this isn’t the way to go.
I really liked this project! I forgot how awesome Mod Podge is…definitely going to be using it on other projects. I can see myself making this as a gift for a friend or family member. Thumbs up!