Painted Tray {Tutorial}


I’ve had this brown tray that I received as a wedding gift {11 years ago!}, but I’ve been thinking it needs an update.  So I got out the spray paint!  I also found some adorable wrapping paper at TJMaxx the other day, and I’ve been dying to use it on something.

So I thought I’d show you how to transform your own tray, too.



+  Tray
+  Spray Paint {I used Rust-oleum Painter’s Touch Ultra Cover}
+  Cute Wrapping Paper
+  Mod Podge Matte {found at any craft store – matte give no shine}
+  Brown Acrylic craft paint
+  Martha Stewarts Antique gel
+  Light grit sand paper
+  Measuring tape or ruler

STEP 1 // Paint Away!

Spray paint your tray using even, light coats per the instructions on the can.  I used the Ultra Cover b/c I find it covers amazingly and dries quickly.  I did two coats just to make sure it was fully covered since I was using light coats {no dripping}.  I recommend painting your tray the day before to let it cure, but you could do it early in the day, then come back to it later on.  Just make sure it’s fully dry before going on to the next step.

STEP 2 // Measure & Cut


Measure the base of the tray then cut out a piece of your wrapping paper the same measurement.  If your wrapping paper has a pattern like mine, make sure the pattern is going in the direction you want it to when you cut it out.


Then lay the cut out piece into the tray bottom and using a knife, trim the edges to fit perfectly.  I used my handy exacto knife.

STEP 3 // Glue it Down


Brush on a thin layer of Mod Podge onto the bottom of the tray.  This will act as your glue.  Then carefully smooth out the wrapping paper over the glued surface, making sure all the air bubbles are out.

Next use your Mod Podge again and brush a thin layer onto the top of the wrapping paper, too.  This will act as a sealant and keep your wrapping paper from getting messed up.  Let this dry then add a second coat.

STEP 4 // Antiquing

KAT_7960 KAT_7961

You may be satisfied with your new tray at this point.  But if you’d like to antique yours a little, mix the Martha Stewart Antiquing gel and with your acrylic paint color {I used a brown} and brush it liberally on your tray.  I brushed it on the entire tray, section by section.  Then you take a dry rag or paper towel and wipe the excess off.  You can keep doing this until you have the finish you like.  Let this dry completely.

STEP 5 // Sand it Down


The final step is to take a fine grit sandpaper and lightly sand the tray down, making sure to sand any part you’d like to look distressed.

And that’s it!  You’re done!  A quick way to add a pop of color to a room.



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