Iron Craft Challenge #22 – Stamped and Stained Tray

I had a vision for my Iron Craft challenge project for this week. We were to create something that to be used while dining Al Fresco. Matt and I do most of our summer entertaining on our back patio. Last year we had it expanded and this year we bought a new patio set. In one corner of the patio I created a lounge area where we can kick back with a book and a cool drink. The only problem was the little table I found to go in between the chairs is rather flimsy for putting drinks on. The table itself is stable but the woven top gives a little too much. I thought a perfect solution was a tray to sit on top of the table.
Iron Craft Challenge #22 - Stained and Stamped Tray
I bought this unfinished tray at Joann’s for $6.99. The size was perfect but I was a little worried that the wood it was made out of was not the best, I should have listened to that little voice.
Iron Craft Challenge #22 - Stained and Stamped Tray
I carefully taped out a border with masking tape. Then I stamped a fork, knife and spoon with acrylic paint in the middle of it.
Iron Craft Challenge #22 - Stained and Stamped Tray
Time for the staining and this is where the problems started. The cheap wood just sucked in that stain, there was no wiping any excess off after a few minutes. In some places the stain actually soaked all the way through. Plus, it was so dark you almost couldn’t see the stamps. Then there were these spots that didn’t take the stain at all.
Iron Craft Challenge #22 - Stained and Stamped Tray
Matt figures that was probably caused by glue on the wood. A good sanding before staining may have taken care of that but I’m not sure as I couldn’t see the glue spots before staining.
I let it dry and took the tape off hoping for at least a nice stripe. Oh no, the stain bled right under the tape which looked awful. So, I stained over those stripes, you can still kind of see them through the stain.
Iron Craft Challenge #22 - Stained and Stamped Tray
Anyway, I’m really disappointed with the way it looks. I was going to coat it with some polyurethane and then have plexi-glass cut to go inside it but, I don’t think it’s worth putting anymore time or money into. I guess I’ll just go and find a tray at IKEA.

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4 Comments to Iron Craft Challenge #22 – Stamped and Stained Tray
    • shopgirl
    • shoot man. Thank you for posting that. I thought that sort of thing never happened at your house.! I really like the idea. I can see where you were going. I LOVE the silverware stamps! The first picture is really cute! Mmmm. I just want to salvage it!

    • Dr. Russ
    • I'm with shopgirl . . . what about painting it white and then some Scandinavian design like your blog wallpaper? Just thinking out loud here.

    • Lori
    • Thats a bummer. You can do a kind of milk painting over it maybe… I dunno. Let us know if you do something else with it.

    • Reve
    • Dr. Russ has a great idea. It could still end up a lot cuter than a generic Ikea tray. Thanks for sharing the projects that don't come out just right as well as the ones that do.

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