DIY Stained Wood Tray

Do you ever see something in a store and think to yourself:
I could totally make that… for a lot less than it costs.

Well that was me a couple weeks ago. I saw this simple wooden tray and instead of shilling out the $50 for it, I decided to make it on my own. And I have to say, I’m in love with the outcome… and it was a super fast project. Yep, even better.

DIY industrial tray tutorialSUPPLIES:

  • (4) 2ft 1×4 boards
  • (2) 14″ 1×4 boards
  • (2) handles
  • 1 1/2 inch wood screws
  • Stain
  • Paint brush or rag
  • Drill
  • Saw
  • Tape measurer

wood tray tutorial DIYI was lucky that I had the scrap wood in my garage and the wood screws on hand. The only thing I had to buy were the handles. Check out Hobby Lobby for a wide range, but wait until they’re 50% off to really save big on this project.

Start by cutting your (4) 2ft boards. I chose 2ft for the tray but you can revise as needed.

DIY wood tray instructionsNext measure across the 4 boards for your cross section pieces. Mine was just at 14 inches but wood may vary slightly so make sure you measure before cutting your 2 cross section pieces!

DIY tray woodThen you’re ready to start construction. Place the cross section pieces down first, then lay your 4 longer boards across the top. You’ll want to basically screw upside down so the screws are on the bottom of the finished tray. I recommend making pilot holes first with your drill.

drill holes for DIY trayYou’ll only need 1 screw in each board for each cross section piece.

DIY tray stained tutorialNext flip it over and start sanding away. You’ll want nice smooth edges and rounded corners so you don’t slice open your hand while handling the tray ;)

DIY stained wood tray tutorialI used Rustoleum’s Ultimate Wood Stain in Dark Walnut for the finish. Love this stuff. Dries super fast and you only need 1 coat. I used a brush to apply but you can also use a rag or foam brush.

wood stain for DIY trayThen I used a Terry Applicator to wipe away the excess stain. BTW, these terry pads are my new best friend for stain and glazes. You can find them on Amazon here (not an affiliate link).

DIY wood stained trayOnce dried you’re ready to apply the hardware.

stained wood tray DIYAnd your DIY stained wood tray is complete!
Really pretty easy, right?

DIY industrial tray tutorialBy the way, I always said I would never make anything with the industrial pipe look (like the shelving that you saw everywhere this past winter) but I couldn’t help myself when I saw these handles at Hobby Lobby. I know… moment of weakness.

DIY wood tray tutorial

DIY stained wood tray

DIY stain wood trayI wish I would have used black screws for the handles. Complete oversight. Ah, oh well… I’m still in love with this tray. And isn’t that stain just dreamy? Nice change of scenery from painted pieces.

stained wood tray tutorial

DIY industrial tray tutorial

And you got to see a lot of peeks in to the guest bedroom makeover.
Big reveal for this room coming next week!

DIY stained wood tray  tutorial

How to Build a Trough Centerpiece

I just got my new Craftsman 10 inch compound miter saw this past weekend and was itching to try my first project with it. So with Thanksgiving just a few short days away, I decided to created a little table trough centerpiece for the occasion… and here’s how I did it.

how to build a table trough centerpiece

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 10 inch compound miter saw
  • brad nailer
  • 3 pieces of 1in x 5.5in x 6ft boards
  • stain
  • white paint
  • vinyl lettering

craftsman compound miter sawI started by cutting my bottom board into 4 foot length with straight cuts (the Craftsman miter saw makes it easy to see where you’re cutting with the battery operated laser line).

miter saw table trough projectFor the two side pieces of the trough I cut the wood into 4 foot lengths with a 45 degree angle cut on both ends (4ft being the short side of the angled edge).

With the leftover wood that I had trimmed off the original boards, I cut two end pieces with both sides mitered at 45 degrees.

craftsman miter saw projectMake sure you double check the measurements for the smaller end pieces so everything fits perfectly together.

miter saw table troughOnce you have perfect cuts, start nailing the sides to the main base board (the one with the straight cuts).

table trough projectAnd pretty soon, you’ll have something pretty like this…

table troughNext I covered all of the outside of the trough with stain. I used this Express Color from Minwax since it’s easy to wipe on and dries almost immediately.

stained table troughThen you’re ready to apply your vinyl lettering. I actually found mine on clearance from Michael’s. It came in two pieces: one side says Family & Friends, the other side says Faith with some little ornamental dingbats.

stenciled table troughNext I painted the entire box with a coat of Pure White Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.

painted and stenciled table troughWhen it dries, you can peel away the vinyl lettering to reveal the stain underneath. Pretty cool, huh? To finish, I lightly sanded the entire table trough to give it a distressed, vintage look.

painted table trough

And here’s the final piece!

table trough flowered centerpiece

table trough fall centerpiece

table trough flower centerpiece

table trough center piece

table trough centerpiece

fall table trough centerpiece

Overall I’m more than happy with my first project using the Craftsman 10 inch compound miter saw! Heck, I can’t wait to see what I can do with this puppy in the new house.

how to build a table trough centerpieceAND make sure you come back tomorrow because I’ll be giving away a Craftsman 10 inch compound miter saw to ONE LUCKY READER from Ace Hardware!

craftsman 10 in compound miter saw

As you know, Ace Hardware is a cooperative-style business meaning each Ace Hardware location is an independent, locally-owned and operated neighborhood business.  As a local business, each Ace Hardware location knows the importance of supporting their neighborhood.

On November 30th, Ace Hardware locations across the country will be celebrating Small Business Saturday® – which takes place between Black Friday and Cyber Monday and is dedicated to supporting the small businesses that help fuel our local economy.  The Shop Small® movement is an easy way to support the local small businesses that create jobs, fuel the economy and invigorate communities across the country.

If you want to see more projects from the Ace Hardware team,
check them out HERE!

ace hardware blogger panel


Disclosure: I am an Ace Hardware DIY Blog Team Member and was provided with an Ace Hardware gift card to purchase items for my project.  I was also compensated for my time to use the products.  All opinions are 100% mine.