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How to make a decorative breakfast tray

Decorative breakfast tray

Mix of images

There's nothing quite like breakfast in bed... and what a treat to have it served on this pretty tray! So simple and fun to make, this decorative floral breakfast tray is also a great project to get the kids involved with.

Material list
1. Plain wooden tray
2. White paint for undercoat and background
3. Montage of pictures of your choice
4. Wallpaper paste
5. Paint brush
6. Resin and container for mixing
7. Scissors
8. Safety gear: mask and gloves
9. Cake tin (or stand of some sort)
10. Colored paint for base of tray (to complement your chosen images)

A few pics followed by the write-up

Wooden breakfast tray Undercoat breakfast tray Selection of cut out images Wallpaper paste

Start with a plain wooden tray.

Give it two coats of white paint (we used acrylic paint) to provide both a protective undercoat and a light-colored background. A light-colored background will help images to stand out if they become transparent when wet with glue, as our magazine cutouts did.

Allow time to dry between coats.

We decided on a floral theme with pinks and greens, and we chose photos from old magazines which used high quality paper. Once we chose our images, we decided on a couple of centerpieces and cut all the rest into random sizes; some as small as a thumbnail.

Get creative here and cut out images and lay them out anyway you want. It's good to have a number of small pieces to use when gluing around fiddly areas, such as corners and handles.

Next, mix up some wallpaper paste following the manufacturer's instructions. Make up sufficient glue to be able to dunk in your pieces of paper and completely cover them with glue.

Pasting image onto breakfast tray Dipping image completely in wallpaper paste Pasting images onto breakfast tray Breakfast tray drying

We started our montage of images by placing a large cut-out in the middle of the tray and then adding smaller pieces around it - working from the middle outwards.

When gluing, be sure to cover each piece of the image entirely with glue. Don't worry if you get blobs of glue on the surface of your montage, as you can sponge off the excess as you go and the glue dries clear. Sponge off the excess frequently while building up the montage of pictures.

If your tray is round like ours, to cover the upper edge of the tray you will need to carefully ease the paper around. This is easiest done by using narrow elongated pieces.

After we covered our entire tray, we glued a final centerpiece on so it had no overlapping pieces on that image. At this stage, check again for any excess glue that will need to be wiped off.

Allow to dry. We recommend leaving to dry for at least 48 hours before applying resin.

Breakfast tray ready for epoxy resin Brush on epoxy resin Paint base of breakfast tray Decorative breakfast tray

Mix resin to manufacturer's instructions, making sure you have enough resin to cover the entire surface of your tray.

We chose to apply the resin with a paintbrush as our tray has a high lip around it. Check out our other resin projects for other application options, which could work equally as well depending upon the shape of tray you're using.

Rest your tray on a solid object (such as a cake tin) to elevate the tray in preparation for resin drips. Once you brush your tray with resin, for the first hour after application you must watch for air bubbles and drips that will appear. It is important to be patient at this stage, as bubbles and drips can spoil your project if you're not careful.

If you see drips form at the base of your tray, wipe clean with your gloved finger or gently with your brush.

If you see bubbles appear, gently blow on them with a straw until they pop.

Once dry, choose a paint color for the underneath side of your tray that will complement the images you've chosen. Give it as many coats as it needs for the finish you desire, again leaving time to dry between coats.

We were very pleased with the result of our floral-themed tray, but as you can imagine there are loads of different prints you could use to fit in with your own decor or tastes.