Wooden craft store trays have so many possibilities. They can quickly and easily be transformed into unique catch-all trays for your special trinkets, mail or you can give them away as gifts! Oh, did I mention they are super affordable? A little over $8 for a 12 ” X 10″ tray.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Wooden serving tray. I got mine at AC Moore Arts & Crafts.
- Sun Print Photo Paper. I found mine at Dick Blick Art Materials. They call their paper Nature Print Paper and they are 5″ X 7″, and come in 30 sheets per pack kits.
- Fine grade sand paper or steel wool.
- Acrylic craft paint.
- Mat varnish.
- Foam paint brushes.
- Repositionable spray adhesive.
- Mod Podge Gloss Lustre glue.
- Cutting mat.
- X-Acto knife.
You can find all of the above project supplies at craft or art stores. And, please don’t be put off by all of the project ingredients or steps. The project is super easy I swear.
My tray is decoupaged with an enlarged copy of a sun print made from one of my backyard ferns. Sun prints are fun, easy and non-toxic. Follow the simple instructions that come with the sun print paper but to summarize, place leaves, flowers, or whatever object you choose on the photo-sensitive paper and place in the sun. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Remove the object after a couple of minutes and rinse the paper to “fix” it. Lay the paper on a flat surface to dry. If it is a cloudy day, you can use a high intensity light to burn your image onto the paper.
Here’s how you transform the tray:
- Lightly sand the wood tray with sand paper or steel wool. I used steel wool and it worked beautifully.
- Paint the tray with the color of your choosing – I used two coats of paint on my tray.
- After the paint is dry, apply the matt varnish. Again, two coats.
- Create your sun print image. Then, enlarge the image to the desired size on a photo copier. The interior dimensions of your tray will dictate the size of the copy.
- Place the photo copied image on a cutting mat and using an X-Acto Knife, cut the copied image to the dimensions of the tray interior.
- Spray the back of the copy with repositionable spray adhesive and insert into the tray. Gently smooth out any wrinkles or bubbles with your fingers.
- Finally, apply Mod Podge Gloss Lustre glue on the face of the copy to seal the image. Two coats please.
Note to crafters, I had my local glass guy cut a piece of beveled glass to fit into the tray to protect the image. It was about $10 for the glass and certainly not necessary but I think it really finishes off the project.
Happy Monday and happy crafting!