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Today, I’m sharing a little project that I hope will provide inspiration and motivation to create something out of disparate items you may have lying around, and turning them into something wonderful. For today’s upcycling, I am using this orange tray made out of pallet material, that sat on our patio for years. It typically held a plant, a candle and some other decorative object and could also be used to transport food and drink from the kitchen to the patio. It only had a couple of things wrong with it…1) it was orange, and had faded terribly over time, and 2) it had a board that was warped from me watering pots on it. It was time to either reimagine it or move it to the burn pile. I chose the former…
Next, in rummaging through my craft closet drawers, I came upon a decal that said Imagine. You know, the kind you can make with a Cricket or Silhouette machine. Ironically, my husband just bought me a Silhouette Cameo machine, but I haven’t used it yet. I have no idea when or where I bought this Imagine decal, but there it was just languishing away in a drawer. “I think I can do something with this and that orange tray and turn them into something fabulous!” I said to myself with unbridled optimism.
Now in a perfect world, I probably would have picked something catchier or more appropriate for the patio than Imagine, but the point of this exercise was to use what I had on hand and turn it into something fabulous, so Imagine it would be.
I asked my husband Jim, aka Mr. Handy, to find a small board in his scraps that the decal would fit on. He found one and cut it to the proper length. “Thanks, honey!” Next, I spray painted it green, using an old can of Oregano paint I had. I applied the decal, burnishing it and sticking it to the wood.
As for the orange tray, it underwent a color change as well with a bronze hammered paint. That neutralized the tray and made it a little less bossy than that orange had been. Much better!
I then went to my greenery collection and managed to find just enough leftovers from my Summery Flower Basket project, which you can read about here Summery Flower basket… and some succulents that were in my staging closet. I was off to the races, turning all of this into something that would fill a blank spot on the wall of our patio.
Initially, I laid everything out and did a “dry fit” of the flower arrangements, one in each corner. I knew I wanted the Imagine board to go at a diagonal, so I though the opposing corners would give the piece a nice balance. After dry fitting everything, I started gluing the flowers and succulents down. I also deconstructed a wreath of greenery and used those pieces as filler. “Hmmm, this doesn’t look half bad.”
After the flowers were glued in each corner, it was back out to the garage where Jim screwed the Imagine board to the tray, attaching it on the back with bolts. The great thing about using a screw and bolts rather than nailing it was that it actually drew the warped wood back into a flat position. Genius! Then he attached a picture hanger to the back and it was ready to hang.
I absolutely love the way this crazy piece turned out. Since everything on it is synthetic and/or protected by paint, it can withstand the occasional watering down or leaf blower when we clean the patio. It also blends so well with our cushions and other accessories on the patio, it’s almost like I planned it that way. After I hung it and went back in the house, I realized that it is also in my direct line of sight when I’m at the kitchen sink, so I can look at it often throughout the day.
And the best part? This piece came in absolutely FREE, which tickles me way more than it probably should:) I hope this project has given you courage, hope, and the daring to try putting together some random items and creating something decorative and useful for your home. It really is more fun than you can Imagine…see what I did there?