I Made Something Pretty {DIY}

Awhile back, I wrote a post about some fun things I found at Goodwill.  I finally got to complete a project on one of those finds.  We have never had anything to put our mail.  We check the mail and put it either on the dining room table or the kitchen counter.  This has always bothered me, yet we continue to do it.  I have looked for mail holders in the past but never found anything I liked.  It was either too bulky, wrong color, too many slots or not big enough.  I saw this office letter tray at Goodwill and thought that was perfect for our mail.  I do not want or care for anything with slots and I do not want to hang something up on the wall.  I bought this beat up thing for $1.99 and off to work my brain went. 

The fam and I went to Home Depot to buy a can of spray paint for this new project.  Honestly, I was overwhelmed with all the colors and like a typical girl or just typical me I could not make a decision.  I knew I wanted a soft, pale color but I just could not make up my friggin mind.  Finally, my boy said that he liked the “yellow one” and without hesitation I bought Krylon’s Meringue.

I know that a project like this is a piece of cake for veteran DIYers but that wasn’t exactly the case for me.  Don’t get me wrong, I was excited to finally spray paint something and call it my own.  The prep work took a wee bit longer than I thought and I have a thing or two or three or four to learn about wood filler and sanding.  Ay yay yay, I tell you.

Anywho, here it is:
I started out with this.
And ended with this.

I started out by peeling off the ugly felt that was glued on the back and scraped what did not peel off.  I scraped so much that it scratched the tray.

In comes the wood filler for the scratches and the small gap along the perimeter.  I also used wood filler for other little nicks and scratches on the rest of the tray.  I then sanded it with a medium sand block followed by a fine sand block.  This process took me the longest and frustrated me some.  Let's just say that this part of the tray (the back part) did not end up looking the way I planned so I will be fixing it later.

After the whole wood filler and sanding mess I was finally able to spray paint.  My very first spray painting project ever.  I felt so grown up.  First, I coated it with Krylon's Primer in white and then sprayed on Krylon's Meringue in satin.  After reading many tutorials, I remembered that thin, even coats was key.  I did mighty good there and only had a few drips.  I did go back and sand those areas lightly and start over but it was no biggie.  Once it was completely dry I sprayed on a couple of coats of Minwax Polycrylic protective spray.  It was beginning to look purdy.  :)

I mentioned that this tray is for our mail and although the inside will most likely never be seen I still wanted it to have a decorative touch.  I decided to put the letter P on it (for our last name).  I typed the P in French Script font, adjusted the size to my liking and hit print.

I cut the black P (with scissors) and then traced it on the back of the scrapbook paper I bought at Hobby Lobby.  I used another black P that printed out too small as my guide while I traced and cut.  I reversed the P that I was tracing and cutting to save space, so I put it as close to the edge of the paper as I could.  Yes, I'm frugal that way.

Once I had my P cut I used Mod Podge to adhere it to the tray.  Again, I used the other P as my guide for placing it on the tray.

I definitely loved the way it looked but I still wanted a little bit more on it.  That is when I looked through all of my paper punches and found a small butterfly punch.  I thought it was perfect since my daughter has a thing for butterflies.  My son picked out the color and the butterfly touches were for her.  :)
I punched out several and randomly placed them at the bottom of the tray with Mod Podge.  My girl got in on the action too once she saw me punching and gluing.

Here is what I used for my first true DIY home project: office tray from Goodwill, Krylon primer & paint, Minwax Polycrylic, wood filler, and two sanding blocks- fine and medium (not pictured), Mod Podge oh and the one sheet of scrapbook paper from Hobby Lobby.

Voila. My end result.  Not bad, eh?  It's not the best picture so I will have to take another in the sunlight.  I was so excited when I finished it that I snapped a picture in the evening once I was finally done.

Here she is with some mail of ours.  I spy an IKEA catalog!

I'm so happy I now have something for mail.  It will sit nice and pretty on our console table.

Pink Texas Chick

UPDATE: Here is a picture of it not taken at night.

P is for our last name and for pretty too.  :)

I'm party crashing at the following:
New Nostalgia
A Bowl Full of Lemons
Sugar Bee Crafts
Today's Creative Blog
Tip Junkie
Night Owl Crafting
Creations by Kara
The Thrifty Home
Someday Crafts
Domestically Speaking
Beyond The Picket Fence
The Shabby Nest


  1. What a great job you did on this old "in/out" box! You have given it a whole new life AND it looks like it is functioning just as needed for your family.

  2. Debbie, I LOVE your little mail tray. And you did such a nice job of transforming it. Thanks for sharing it in the DIY Talent Parade.


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