My latest project involves another goodwill item. Ever since we inherited a couch and loveseat from the in-laws, I have been wanting a serving tray to use to corral remotes and other items that tend to be scattered around the living room. After not finding something I liked in stores (at least not for a price I wanted to pay), I turned to goodwill.
I decided to craft my own to get the look I wanted for less. I found a bamboo tray at Goodwill for a couple of dollars. The bamboo was put together in a circular pattern and had started to separate in some places on the bottom of the tray, but for the price, I was okay with that. The outside of the tray was stained a medium brown that had seen better days, and a quick sanding with my mouse using 120 grit sandpaper striped it right off.
I used wood putty to fill the gaps on the inside of the tray. Then I used my mahogany stain on the bottom and sides of the tray (I wasn’t as worried about the gaps on the bottom, because well it is on the bottom – who’s gonna see it?) Once I had done about three coats of stain, it was the color I wanted. Next I taped off the sides and used some green spray paint I had for the interior. It became obvious that I had not gotten the gaps 100% filled, so I did another round of putty and lightly sanded it with my 0000 steel wool.
Ummm…can you tell I like green?
I finished up my green paint and removed the painter’s tape from the sides. I did a light sand of the edges with my steel wool to ensure a smooth finish, then moved on to some spray lacquer. I have discovered that polyurethane works for stained items and lacquer is best for painted items, because polyurethane is golden and dries with a yellow tint on painted items. Live and learn and get it right the next time!
I am very happy with the way it turned out – it is exactly what I had in my head when I started out. Just one more great accessory to add a pop of color and help break up the sea of dark stained tables and cabinets and dark upholstery.