Easy Peezy Spring Tray

Who doesn’t love an easy, inexpensive re-purposing project? I’m sharing one of my favorites with you today, just in time for spring! Wood mail sorters are so multi-purpose and can be found hanging around thrift stores and flea markets with very nice price tags. I picked this one up at a yard sale for a buck!

DIY Project

After a good cleaning, give your tray a coat of fresh paint. You can cover it completely, dry brush or eyen layer two or more colors. I really wanted to show off the tongue & groove construction and wood grain so I went with a light coat of Fresh Lime by Benjamin Moore mixed with Webster’s Chalk Paint Powder.

Spring Tray Project

Finishing is also a matter of personal preference. Small projects like this are fun to play with! They are a great way to incorporate vibrant colors or heavily distressed pieces in to your decor. I went with light distressing around the edges on this one. Since interior corners can be a challenge to buff, I sealed the inside with Polycrylic. The outside got a dose of Fiddes & Sons clear wax. You can stop here for a snazzy decorative tray or add handles to make it portable. I’m a hardware hoarder so I usually have an assortment of salvaged hardware to choose from. I used brass pulls from an old dresser but you can pick up new ones at any local home improvement store or Hobby Lobby. You can really get fun with this part! Bling it out with clear glass pulls or give it a funky vibe with colorful, patterned pulls! Here is a little tip for easy hardware placement.

Cover the hardware holes with chalk.

Marking for holes Marking for holes 

Center the hardware, and press firmly to transfer the chalk.

easy hardware placement

Before proceeding to the next step, make sure you are using the right size drill bit. You can do this easily by placing the bit inside the hardware holes, where the screws will go in. If the bit will not fit inside, drop down in size until it will.

Use the chalk impression to center your drill bit.

IMG_2361 copy

Ok, I’m a little OCD! The exposed screws on the inside really bother me so I paint them too. Not necessary but it looks better!

spring tray project

 spring tray project

spring tray project

Once the hardware is attached, you’re done! Use for whatever your heart pleases! It’s perfect for serving food, storing magazines, or as an anchor in a pretty spring vignette!

spring tray project

spring tray project

spring tray project






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  1. LuAnn Sharp says:

    Just in time as I plan to retire and have several wooden organizer trays! Fun and useful! I read many people are using wax to seal… Why is that? I’ve always just given a quick polyeurathane coat….also, I’ve never used chalk paint powder. Can you explain how to use it?

    • Hi LuAnn! Wax is used to seal the chalk style paints because it gives a soft luster. Polyurethane can be used to seal chalk style paint as wel, it just gives a different finish. Websters Chalk Paint Powder is an all natural powder that gets added to water then mixed with latex paint {any brand, any color} to make chalk style paint! It’s amazing!! If you’ll tune into my blog this evening, I’ll be sharing a video that tells all about it! All the best with your tray projects! ~Angela~

  2. great idea! I just picked up one of these and haven’t really come up with any idea for using it as is. It’s a bit small for the coffee table, but…. now that you mention it, I have two trays tha would be wonderful on that huge coffee table! Thanks for the idea!
    And I like the chalk idea. I usually use lipstick, but sometimes that can be a bad thing.
    Blogs and HomeTalk can be so addicting! And so informative. Thanks again!

    • Thank you Nancy! I’m so glad you found your way to me via Hometalk! That chalk technique comes in handy for a lot of situations! All the best with your tray crafting project!! ~Angela~

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