Last year, I bought this honey oak wood tray at a garage sale for just $1. The finish was nothing to brag about, but I liked the cute shape and knew I could refinish it.
The great part about this project is that I used only supplies I already had on hand, so the entire tray cost me just 1 buckaroo! I started to refinish the tray by lightly sanding it and then applying a spray paint primer. I knew I wanted it to be white, so then I painted it using white latex paint I already had (leftover from painting doors and trim). I had trouble hiding all of my brush strokes, so I finished my white layer with a coating of white spray paint.
Already the tray was looking better with a nice crisp white finish, but I decided to spice it up a little with a painted pattern. Luckily, I found a free quatrefoil stencil on the CSI project (thanks!). The pattern was a little too large for my tray, so I scaled it to 70% on my computer before printing it.
To make a stencil, I decided to cut it out of a plastic presentation cover. I taped the stencil to it, attached it to a catalog so I wouldn’t cut my coffee table underneath (Garnett Hill was my choice. Side note: they have such pretty stuff, but it’s so darn expensive), and then I got to work with my exacto knife.
Turns out, the plastic cover was pretty thick and I had trouble cutting smooth lines with it with my exacto knife (but maybe I wasn’t using the best knife, I had bought the cheapest one at AC Moore).
I decided to try to paint with the stencil any way, but my lines looked pretty jagged with it.
So onto plan B, I cut the same pattern out of construction paper. The paper was much easier to cut than the report cover and it worked great at first…until it ripped about halfway through!
Not wanting to cut a third stencil, I went back to the plastic cover, trying to be as careful as possible. It wasn’t perfect, but I decided to just finish the job with it and then go back and retouch later. And retouch I did, handpainting the green portion and then the white part with a paint brush.
Once all of the paint was dry, I finished the tray by spray painting it with Minwax Polycrylic protective spray. It gave the tray a nice glossy coat and will hopefully protect the paint from scratches. The tray was much more time consuming than I had planned, but it was worth the effort. Check it out!
I’ve been using it in my family room on top of my ottoman coffee table. It’s great to have a hard surface to place drinks and other stuff on top of the soft table. I’ve been playing around with how to decorate it, and so far have a white lantern, my shell filled with shells, and a little green vase.
It also looks cute with a plant on it. I’m really enjoying this quatrefoil tray and although it took a while to complete, I feel so happy and proud every time I look at it!
And because we all love before and afters, here’s a recap!
Not bad for $1 buck, right?
I'm linking this project up to The DIY Club, Today's Creative Blog, Silly Little Sparrow, Sew Much Ado, Women Who Do It All, Savy Southern Style, Tatertots and Jello, The DIY Showoff, Southern Hospitality, and Home Stories A2Z.