Among all the resin projects you can create, trays have to be some of our favorites! Today we are teaching you how to make a decorative wooden tray that is beautiful and perfect for everyday use. 

When it comes to making trays there are so many ways that you can do it. There are some amazing molds that you can use to create stand alone trays. You can also use existing trays and add your resin to create something beautiful. Some artists like to add items to their trays to add texture and pizazz, others choose to use a color blending technique that leads to fabulous results. Today we are talking about how to make decorative wooden trays so we will be going with an existing tray and “traditional” resin pouring. Each piece will be as unique as the artist who creates it. We give you the basics and you can let your imagination take over from there!

How to make a decorative wooden tray

How to Make a Decorative Wooden Tray

Making a decorative wooden tray with Artist Resin can be as simple or as complicated as you want to make it. You can use as many or as few colors as you like. You can also add glitters and mica powders or stick with colorant alone. There is no limit to where your artistic vision can take you. All you need to do is start with your wooden tray as a base and then let your artistic instinct take over. Some artists have a complete vision of what they create before they start. Others have a basic color scheme in mind but like to see where the piece will take them as they work. Whatever your creative style, this is the perfect resin project for you! 

For this project, any wooded tray will do. If you find one that you love the look of, you can cover it partially with your resin and still leave the wood on display. If you’re not partial to the tray itself you can cover it completely with resin and let that be the superstar. You can find wooden trays in so many places. Any home store will have them but keep in mind that if you buy them new the prices will be higher. Another idea would be to check out thrift stores and garage sales. You can often snag some great trays for a much lower price. If you sell your resin creations you know that this is a big win! 

A word about Armor Art…

Many resin artists love using Armor Art on their wooden trays. The reason for this is that Armor Art is how you get those amazing cells and lacing. This is especially popular for ocean themed trays because the Armor Art makes beautiful waves. To use Armor Art mix a little bit into your mixed epoxy and then string it over your piece. Next, use your torch to apply heat and set the resin moving. This will create that beautiful cell and lacing effect. Just keep in mind that a little bit goes a long way! We have Armor Art in opaque, neon, pearl, and metallic so you’ll be able to achieve any look you can conceive! 

Wooden Tray Supply List

Step by Step Instructions

  1. Start by making sure that your wooden tray is clean. If it is an older tray, lightly sand any imperfections and then remove any saw dust.
  2. Next, measure equal parts of the Artist Resin parts A and B following the instructions on the container. Combine the two parts into one mixing cup and stir to combine for 2-3 minutes. Be sure to mix thoroughly scraping the sides of your cup and stick. 
  3. Separate your combined resin into smaller portions. How many portions will depend on how many shade you will be using. 
  4. Add your different chosen colorants to the smaller portions of resin and mix well to combine. Start with a small amount of colorant and add more if you need to until you achieve your desired color. 
  5. Start to pour the colored resins one by one. Make sure that one resin is level before pouring another one. You may want to use a gloved finger, torch,  or a spatula to guide the resin where it should go. If you are using Armor Art remember our suggestions from above and use your torch to move this portion of resin around. 
  6. Continue pouring your different resin colors to create the pattern that you like.
  7. Next, use the torch to pop any bubbles and continue adding effects by using the torch to move the resin. 
  8. When you have finished adding your pigmented resin allow the tray to cure for 24 hours. Be sure to cover it with a box or plastic tub to protect it from dust while it cures. 
  9. Next, mix another batch of Artist Resin and smooth an even layer over your tray. This will seal in your previous layer and give it an even glass like finish. The Artist Resin is super durable which makes it perfect for this type of project. You will be able to use your tray often without having to worry about whether or not it will hold up. It will!
  10. Use the torch again to pop any bubbles.
  11. Finally, allow your tray to cure for another 24 hours. 

How to make a decorative wooden tray

The Wrap Up…

This is such a fun and fabulous project! There are so many ways you can take these general instructions and make them your own. And you don’t have to stop at they wooden tray. You could always keep going and make a matching set of coasters. That would give you a complete and beautiful collection! What an amazing gift or addition to your business page these would make. We can’t wait to see what you come up with. Remember that we love to see what you create, tag us on Instagram with #counterculturediy so we can check out your art work! 

If you want more inspiration and information we have a Facebook group for that. Join us in Counter Culture DIY Artist Support where we, and other artists, offer ideas, answer questions, and support each other!

Do you have an art project using any of our products that you want to share? Send it to us at support@counterculturediy.com, and we can feature them here!