Easy To Do Upcycle Project

It’s funny how your tastes in fashion change and evolve over the years.  The same goes for my taste in interior design.  I guess, like a lot of people I’m influenced by upcoming trends but I’ve also tended to be a bit of a natural hoarder. I’m the kind of person who tends to hang onto things ‘just in case’ or because ‘it cost x amount’. I hate throwing something away just because I’ve gone off the design, to me that seems wasteful. The problem with this is it means I end up with a mish mash of furniture and accessories of different styles and colours that don’t really work. On top of being a hoarder, I’m also an impulsive shopper. If I see something I like I tend to buy it, especially if it’s in the sale. Yep, I’m every retailers dream shopper.

This is why I love upcycling! It means I can give something I own a new lease of life and make it more my own style.

For example take this cute white, flowery breakfast tray.  A few years ago this would have been very much my style but as much as I appreciate how spring like and lovely it is, I wont use it and that’s a shame.  I decided that I couldn’t leave it sitting in a cupboard gathering dust, there must be something I can do with it.

upcycle a breakfast tray

After a browse down Eccy Road in Sheffield, I found some quirky wrapping paper.  It had flamingos and pineapples on, what’s not to love about it!?  I was planning on framing it but realised it would actually work quite well with the breakfast tray.

I decided to spray paint the entire tray black using Rustoleum Craft Enamel.  First I wiped down the tray to make sure it was free any debris that could affect the paint and sprayed it first with Rustoleum Surface Primer.  The primer basically coats your surface and creates a smooth layer that the craft enamel will adhere to.  You can pick Rustoleum products up from your local Wilkos or head over to the Rustoleum website to find your nearest stockist.

surface primer used before applying top coat

Rustoleum surface primer and breakfast tray

The instructions say the surface is touch dry in 20 minutes and hard dry in 24 hours. Now I’m a very impatient person so as soon as the 20 minutes was up I sprayed the entire tray with the craft enamel paint.  This is the part where you really do have to use all your patience.  The top coat needs to be applied lightly. If you apply it too thickly, the paint will start to run and you’ll end up with hard drops of paint on the surface.  I always take the view that everything will always need at least a second coat for full coverage so bare in mind the first coat will look very patchy.

I let the tray dry for at least another two hours before I sprayed it again and left it to fully dry until the next day.

When I was happy the paint had dried completely I measured the inside surface and marked this out on the back of the wrapping paper. I used the side of the tray as a straight edge and used a paper cutter as I find this easier to get a straight line instead of using scissors


paper cutting and wrapping paper

Freehand paper cutter and wrapping paper

Now I’m not going to lie, I had a lot of issues with the glue wrinkling the paper.  I used a decoupage glue which I thought would be fine but I ended up having to remove the paper and cutting out some more.  In the end I decided on a straight forward glue stick which hasn’t caused any wrinkling.  I was also planning on coating the top of the paper with the decoupage glue to give it a protective layer but because of the problems I’ve had I decided to leave it as there isn’t enough paper left for any mistakes!  If anyone has any suggestions on what I can use to give it a protective layer I’d love to hear.

Here’s the finished item so far.  I love it so much more now, it’s definitely more my style and I love having it on display.  Also if I get bored of the paper I can easily change it for something else.

upcycled breakfast tray

The finished version

upcycled breakfast tray

Have you upcycled anything lately, I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to? Click here for more easy to do upcycling projects. Oh and if you have any tips on what I can use to protect the tray please let me know!


3 thoughts on “Easy To Do Upcycle Project

  1. Bec says:

    That looks really great – I’ve not really upcycled much but I’ve got a few things to repaint, you’ve inspired me 🙂 Thanks


  2. crgerdes says:

    This is so fun. Reading through it, I am going through the exact same thing. I used to love shabby-chic, but now I am turning to the more sleek, feminine style. I do still love florals though 🙂 And I totally understand not being patient and waiting for dang glue to dry! haha!

    I did a similar tray diy, but with florals recently. I absolutely love the wrapping paper you chose for yours!



  3. The Daisy Pages says:

    I love what you’ve done with this tray, it looks really amazing. I wish I had some of your talent 🙂


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