If you spend any time on Pinterest you've probably noticed the popularity of Wooden Word Art Farmhouse Signs. I've been wanting to build one for the longest time and when I heard about this month's theme, I decided to spin mine into a Rustic Word Art Farmhouse Tray with a copper twist.
Materials ListWhite Melamine Particle Board
Pine 1 x 2 Lumber
Wood Construction Glue
2 Copper Drawer Pulls
Bar Keepers Friend
Metallic Bronze Sharpie Marker
Fusion Mineral Paint Picket Fence
Minwax Wood Finish Stain Dark Walnut
Dixie Belle Paint Company Gator Hide Poly
Countersink Bore Drill Bit
3/4-inch Drill Bit
1 1/2-inch Brad Nails
Wood Handle Awl
Tool ListTable saw
Pneumatic nail gun and compressor
Cut Wood Sizes
The 10-inch pine 1 x 2 boards are for the end rails of the tray and the hardware will be mounted on them. The 16 ½-inch pine 1 x 2 boards are for the side rails. Both were cut using a miter saw and the tray will be assembled with a simple butt joint.
How To DIY A Rustic Farmhouse Tray
Cleaning copper drawer pulls
Notice how shiny the copper drawer pulls are in the photo above? In the photo below you can see how dirty they were from years of grime. Nasty but the price was right. They were included in a Lot of assorted hardware at a local auction.
I looked high and low for Bar Keepers Friend to clean them and when I couldn't find any at Canadian retailers I soaked them in vinegar (lemon juice and borax will also work) overnight and scrubbed them with a general purpose scouring pad, being careful not to scratch the metal.
Chalk paint tray top
To get a smooth finish and avoid brush strokes, I rolled the Picket Fence color mineral paint over the top with a foam roller.
Image Transfer onto tray
I created the word art in PicMonkey for the top of the tray and printed it on legal size bond paper. To transfer the graphic onto the painted tray top, I centered the paper and secured it with painter's tape. Next, I slipped a piece of graphite paper underneath and traced over each letter with a pen.
To get a unwatermarked copy of the graphic to use for non-commercial use, press the image below.
I went over the transferred graphic with a Metallic Bronze Sharpie Pen to get the look of copper to match the drawer pulls.
I waited several hours to be sure the ink was completely dry before applying two coats of poly called Gator Hide by Dixie Belle Paint Company. Considering liquids may be spilled on the tray, I wanted waterproof protection over top the melamine.
Staining the side rails
To make it easier, I stained the wood tray rails before assembly. I love dark walnut stain for a rustic farmhouse look. I applied just one coat with a lint-free rag.
Pre-drilling holes for hardware
It's important that the hardware is mounted on the side rails before assembly because part of the screws will be concealed beneath the melamine base (see photo after the one below).
Tip for marking screw holes for handles
- Cut a piece of painter's tape the same length as the 10-inch pine board.
- Mark the center both horizontally and vertically with an +.
- Center the drawer pull over the mark on the tape.
- Press firmly onto the tape to make an imprint of the posts on the hardware.
- Use a square or measuring tape to ensure the imprints are straight on the board (we don't want crooked handles).
- With an Awl, pierce a hole in the center of each mark.
Drill holes using a drill bit around the same size as the screws for the drawer pulls.
Assembling the tray
Starting with the handle rails, run a bead of construction glue along the edge of the tray base then using a pneumatic nail gun and 1 ½-inch nails, attach them to the base. Caution: make sure you hit the nail in the center of the base otherwise you'll have nails sticking up over the top or bottom of the tray.
Next butt the joints together for the sides and attach them to the base as above. Nail the corners at the top (as seen below). I didn't try to conceal the nails with filler because I think they add to the rustic charm of the tray.
Before I send you off to see the trays my friends on the Power Tool Challenge Team made, here is a recap of other rustic projects I made for previous challenges. Like this Coffee Mug Holder or Antique Chair Spindle Garden Caddy or Pallet Nursery Wall Art.
Power Tool Challenge Team Projects
To see each tray made by the team, please press the links below...
Designed Décor - DIY Serving Tray
Interior Frugalista - DIY Farmhouse Tray
H2OBungalow - Coastal Rope Handle Tray Tutorial
Virginia Sweet Pea - DIY Farmhouse Style Tray
My Repurposed Life - DIY Tray Using Metal Tiles
My Love 2 Create - DIY Chalkboard Serving Tray
Create And Babble - DIY Wooden Quilt Square Tray
The Kim Six Fix - Easy Hexagonal Tray
Domestically Speaking - DIY Coastal Tray