A house truly becomes a home not when you put in the furniture but when you start adding all the little details and accessories that give it character.
Handmade items are particularly effective at making a home look charming and feel lived in. One of these things could be a decorative tray.
14 Decorative Tray Design Ideas
Simple decorative tray using wine corks
In addition to looking interesting, this tray also gives use to something we don’t usually pay much attention to: wine corks. If you want to learn how to make something like this there’s a tutorial on 21rosemarylane that you can follow.
Come up with a new wood pattern
Consider this scenario: you have an old wood tray with all sorts of stains and crumbs stuck in the cracks but otherwise in good shape. If you give it a thorough cleaning, a fresh coat of paint and then you cover the bottom with a few pieces of wood arranged in a nice pattern you basically get a brand new stylish tray. Check out tarynwhiteaker for more info.
Play with resin
Resin is definitely something you should consider using in your DIY projects if you haven’t done it already. You can make all sorts of cool things with it, like completely transform a plain old tray into something unique and mesmerizing. You can find more details on birdsparty.
Decorate a cute jewelry tray
Tray come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and this one is just right to work as a jewelry holder. Its bottom is decorated with colored resin, felt flowers and a bit of glitter and it looks fantastic. Head over to deliciousanddiy to see how it was made.
Make a penny tray
If you have a bunch of pennies just sitting in a bowl doing nothing perhaps you’d like to use them in a creative and interesting way. One of the things you could do with them is decorate a tray. You can cover the bottom of the tray in pennies and set them in resin or seal them. The process is described on beingbrook.
A super simple way to embellish a tray and change its appearance is by stenciling it. All you need is a stencil and some spray paint. It’s quick and eays and best done outside. Don’t forget to seal the tray at the end to protect it. For more details check out craftionary.
Make a herringbone pattern
If the tray is big enough another interesting idea is to cover the bottom in small strips of balsa wood and to create a herringbone pattern. You can stain the balsa sheet first if you want to give it a particular color to match the rest of the tray. For more details head over to designsponge.
Repurpose a picture frame into a tray
This is a really cool idea because by using a picture frame it means you can easily personalize your tray with things like photos, notes, drawings or pieces of fabric. Just add handles to the frame and that’s basically it. The idea comes from ashleyannphotography.
Use bottle cap
We’ve already seen how a tray can look like if you decorate it with wine corks but what about bottlecaps? If you spend a bit of time collecting a bunch of them this could end up being a really cool and interesting project. You can find the full tutorial for it on sweetsomethingdesign.
Play with stripes
Stripes and geometric patterns in general are easy and fun to do because all you usually need is painter’s tape and spray paint. Apply tape in the desired pattern, then spray paint the rest and your beautiful design will be revealed as soon as the tape is removed in the end. Check out abubblylife for more details and ideas.
Use metallic gold paint
If you want to make a tray look stylish and elegant, using metallic paint is one of the best options. You can either use spray paint or liquid paint and a foam roller and there’s plenty of patterns and designs you can create as well. For more inspiration head over to centsationalstyle.
Make a wood slice tray
There is of course also the option to make a beautiful tray from scratch. An easy method is to use a wood slice. Leave the bark on around the edge for a bit of contrast and texture. Attach two stylish handles and feel free to decorate the surface however you want. Chalkboard paint a pretty cool option. Check out projectnursery for more details.
Line it with fabric
Instead of painting the tray another idea is to line it with fabric. Pick a type of fabric that looks good and has a flat texture to make this easy for yourself. All you need then is some Mod Podge and a pair of scissors to get this done. Check out minted if you want a detailed tutorial.
Turn trays into decorations
Trays are great for more than just serving drinks and snacks. They can also be displayed around the house as decorations, especially chalkboard trays that you can personalize with cute and seasonal messages. Check out amylattacreations for some ideas in this regard.