Happy New Year! I haven’t posted what we’ve been up to for awhile but don’t worry, the house projects are still coming along. I’ve been terrible at taking pictures but hopefully I’ll get around to posting what I have soon. For Christmas this year, Jack and I made a lot of gifts that we gave to family and these DIY trays were one of my favorites.
We started off with building the trays out of walnut. We used scrap walnut that we had and attached the pieces together with wood glue since it is pretty thin. We did one larger tray and one smaller one so that they could be stacked on top of each other when they are not being used.
From the beginning, we knew one tray would be a Minnesota one and we couldn’t think of another cool idea so we kept with the geography theme and did a United States one for the larger tray. To get the inlaid shapes, we printed out an outline of Minnesota and the US and then traced it onto the walnut tray.
Then, Jack drilled a few holes at sharp corners so the saw could easily change direction.
From there, we used a scroll saw to cut along the outline of the shape so it left a hole inside the trays.
We then used the same printed off outlines to cut the Minnesota and US out of maple. We used maple so that there would be a good color contrast from the walnut. Once everything was cut out and we tested to make sure they fit in the trays, we put wood glue along the outside of the maple pieces and used a mallet to wedge them into the trays.
We added a walnut edge and sprayed the trays with 3 coats of polyurethane. And to finish them up, we added these handles from Menards.
I think they turned out really cool and made for a great gift!