This DIY Wooden Tray with handles is the perfect coffee table tray! This easy farmhouse style tray can be customized to match any decor, and makes a great DIY gift!
Today I’m sharing a tutorial you will want to make over and over. This simply DIY Wooden Tray is perfect for organizing small spaces in your home. It also happens to make the perfect gift! With just a few materials and tools you can create a farmhouse style tray that looks great on coffee tables, as a serving tray, or a thoughtful gift for someone special!
Materials Needed for a DIY Wooden Tray
- 1 x 4 x 8 lumber
- Miter Saw or Circular Saw
- Finishing Nails
- Optional: handles, screws, stencil, paint, stain
How do you make a tray with handles?
As you can see I added handles to my tray, this is completely optional. Choose a set of handles that match the style you want to achieve. My handles were left over from old kitchen cabinets, so they have a great antique, farmhouse vibe. In order to add the handles you just need to center the handles on each side of the tray and secure with screws. These are some great handles that you can order online:
- 3″ Straight Bar Handles: great for an aged, antique look.
- Brushed Gold Handles: perfect for a more modern look.
- Vintage Style Black and White: perfect unique handle for a has a cozy farmhouse vibe.
How do you finish a wooden tray?
This depends on the look you would like to achieve. You can paint or stain your tray to match your decor. However, if you would like to achieve an aged barn wood look like my tray you can do this easily with tea and vinegar. To age your wood naturally follow these steps:
- Brew a strong glass of black tea, pour in a mason jar and seal for 24 hours.
- Pinch up a few small pieces of 0000 steel wool and seal them in a jar with 8 ounces of white vinegar, make sure they are fully submerged for 24 hours.
- Apply a generous coat of tea to your boards and allow it to dry completely.
- Once dried, apply a coat of vinegar with the steel wool. Work the vinegar and steal wool over the wood to achieve your desired look. I applied my vinegar and then wiped it down to soften the look. Feel free to play with this and get the right look for your tray.
How do you make a wooden tray waterproof?
In order to water proof your tray you will need a few extra supplies. To securely seal and protect your tray you will need to carefully brush a layer of polyurethane over your wood. Make sure to read the directions and choose a sealant that will not yellow your project.
Alternatively, you can seal your project naturally with linseed oil. This doesn’t offer quite the same protection that polyurethane will, but if you just need something to help seal and not necessarily waterproof this is a good option for you.
Other Easy DIY Projects
You do not have to spend a lot of time or money to beautiful decor! I have several step by step tutorials for projects that are easy enough for beginners. These DIY Plant Pedestals are an easy woodworking project that also makes a great gift! Some other easy projects include:
- DIY Birch Branch Wreath
- Easy DIY Birch Branch Candle Holders
- How to Build a Raised Garden Bed
- How to Plant Garlic
DIY Wooden Tray
The love for knock offs is big and we are going to build a knock off coffee table tray. The aged wood finish gives the design a rustic quality that blends easily with all interiors. The dimensions of this tray is 18 x 12 x 1.675 inches.
- 1 x 4 x 8 lumber
- Miter saw or circular saw
- Finishing nails
- Step 1. The tray is made up of 7 different pieces, they are listed below:
4 - 16.5 inch long pieces from the 1 x 4 x 8
Rip one of the 16.5 inch boards down to 1.675 inches wide, these will become the sides.
1 - 12 inch long piece from the 1 x 4 x 8
Rip the 12 inch wide board down to 1.675 inches wide, these will be the ends.
- Step 2. Assemble the sides. Apply a light coat of glue to the edge of the bottom board, place the side board to the edge of the bottom board and drill four starter holes for the finishing nails. Started holes will prevent the finishing nails from splitting the wood. Repeat this step for the other side. Keeping things square makes the project much easier.
- Step 3. Position the bottom boards as you like, square them up then apply a light coat of wood glue. Drill starter holes, one in each bottom board. I like to dip the finishing nails in some glue to prevent them from backing out. Repeat this process on the other end to complete the tray.
- Step 4. Center the handles. Drill the starter holes and secure the handles with the screws.
I seated the screws with a screwdriver to prevent over doing it with the drill. The handles were repurposed from a kitchen remodel.
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