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Dollar Store Serving Tray Tutorial

Why am I so fascinated with the Dollar Store? It’s truly amazing to me that everything in there is just a buck. I get a little mesmerized when I’m in there… 
I picked up a couple metal pizza pans a few weeks ago, thinking that I could do something fun with them. As I was going through my kitchen cupboards the other day I discovered that I really don’t have many serving trays and I thought — why not turn one of those pizza platters into a serving tray? I was going to make a Valentine’s one, but wanted to use it all year — so made it match my kitchen. 
I thought it would be cute to add some little feet to the tray so it sits up off of the counter. I have a box of old knobs from when I switched my knobs out in my kitchen. So I grabbed a few of those. But you could probably find some at a thrift store too. I also added a couple dainty little drawer pulls (from an old dresser redo) to use as handles.
Here’s what I did:
  • I flipped the pizza pan over and measured where I wanted to put the feet. I measured the space between each foot as well as the distance diagonally across the sheet. They all ended up being 6 inches. Then I marked the spot with a black sharpie.
  • Then I picked out 4 different black and white papers to use for the projects. I cut 4 inch strips of paper. I had to cut the paper diagonally in my paper cutter so that the length would be long enough to cover the pizza pan and go over the sides.
  • Then I Mod Podged the paper onto the pan. I started at one side. I laid the first sheet of paper over the side of the pan to see where I needed to place it. I made a little mark with my sharpie on the edge of the paper. I trimmed the edges of the paper so that they mimicked the edges of the pan – -leaving about an inch longer than the edge of the pan. I made little cuts at the edges of the sheet so that when I flipped the edges under that they would lay flat.
  • Then I applied the mod podge. I put a layer on the pan itself and another layer on the back of the paper. Then I layed the sheet on the pan with the edge where the sharpie mark was. I smoothed it down using an old credit card. I used my fingers to smooth it down over the rim of the pan and around the side of the edge. (you need to put mod podge around the side to the back of the sheet). I continued pressing with my fingers over the edge of the pan and flipped the pan over to smooth down the edges on the underside.
  • Note: At this point, only put Mod Podge on the underside of the paper — not the outside of the paper.
  • Then I applied the next strip of paper, doing the same thing.
  • Once all of the paper was applied and wrapped around to the back of the pan, I let it sit until the Mod Podge dried.
  • Once it was dried, I put a layer of Mod Podge on the top of the paper. I found that this cuts down on the bubbling. 
  • Once that layer of Mod Podge was dried, I sprayed the sheet with polyurethane spray. This will make it so you can wipe down the platter. I put 3 layers of polyurethane spray on – letting each layer dry for about 15 minutes in between coats.
  • While the polyurethane was drying, I painted my old knobs black. I applied two coats and let them dry. Once the paint was dry, I applied 2 coats of polyurethane spray and let that dry.
  • Once the polyurethane was dry — about an hour after the last coat, I flipped the pan over and applied the black knobs to the pan. I used Gorilla Glue and it is awesome stuff! It takes about 2 hours to dry so I let it dry overnight.
  • The next morning I applied a very small amount of the same Gorilla Glue to the handles on top of the tray and let those dry for a couple of hours. And I was done!
And, for a buck — how could I go wrong??



  1. Holiday Snob says:

    Hi we are stopping by from Holiday Snob and wanted to let you know that we are featuring this tutorial in our post today! We made an Easter version of this–thanks for such great and genius ideas!! We always love your ideas!! here is the linkhttp://holidaysnobs.blogspot.com/2011/03/easter-cake-standcould-that-really-be.html

  2. This is genius! I need a large tray for a centerpiece on my kitchen table and haven't been able to find the "right" one. I'm borrowing this! Thanks so much for the inspiration! I love you blog!
    Scissors & Spatulas

  3. So, I have made 2 of these trays in a week…and I already have requests from my friends for more! Thanks for such a great idea…keep it coming!! I LOVE your blog!!!!!!

  4. Jennifer very creative and elegant!! Smart lady!!

    I have a New Giveaway from the French Basketeer I think you will love!

    Art by Karena

  5. Creations By Cindy says:

    I am blown out of the water with this idea! Unreal and so savy! I love it! And I will try this as well. WOW! TFS
    Be blessed, Cindy

  6. made some and LOVE them!


    THANK YOU for being creative and sharing it with the world!!

  7. Shropshire Suz says:

    wow wow wow!! another wonderful black and white idea
    Gpt to try this one
    thanks again for sharing
    Hugs Suz x

  8. I really like this tray. Your love for the dollar store is rubbing off on me. Thanks for the tutorial.

  9. Brassy Apple says:

    LOVE the black and white combo!

  10. ~3 Sides of Crazy~ says:

    This is so adorable! I love Gorilla glue!

  11. Amazing! Not bad for a dollar! I love how you repurposed this tray. Great idea!


  12. It's beautiful, I love it Jen! Looks like I'm headed to the Dollar Tree!

  13. I love your blog! Your ideas are so CUTE, easy, cheap, and fun! You are TALENTED!! Thanks for sharing!!

  14. Tammy @ tinselshop.com says:

    Your tray is just gorgeous! Those brownies are the best (I had them last year and just saw them again, we were so excited)! I just LOVE your ideas and blog. Each time I stop by I know that I will be inspired!

    Best wishes,

  15. Miller Racing Family says:

    Another fabulous creation.
    We are huge fans of Gorilla Glue. My grandparents say the Gorilla tape is wonderful as well.
    It must be because I am pregnant but those treats on the plate look wonderful.
    Have a great day!

  16. Girl, you amaze me!!!!! Now I gotta run to the Dollar Store and do this! I SO LOVE it! :o) Thanks for the tutorial! :o)

  17. Way way cute… whata great idea. I love that your mind creates all these beautiful things that I can copy.

  18. Marla at Always Nesting says:

    Now that is the perfect project!! Love the way that tray turned out.

  19. Mod Podge Amy says:

    Jen – it looks fabulous! You are so Mod Podge talented! I need to feature you again soon . . xo

  20. Pretty Things says:

    Flipping awesome!

  21. Amazing Jen :) I really need to shop the dollar store more often, without my little distractions along so I can think! Lol!

  22. What a lovely tray! Nice work!

    And your little treats look good too!

  23. Love this idea!! COme over and add it to Thrifty Treasure Thursday!

  24. simplydesigning.blogspot.com says:

    Wow! What an incredible idea!! I could use some serving plates myself but hate spending $10-$40 dollars on one…I love how cheaply this can be done and that they also look way cute! I can't wait to try this!!

  25. What a cool idea!!

  26. beachy keen girl says:

    You are so creative — and get such fun ideas from the dollar store — i love it!

  27. I am going to have to work in a trip to the Dollar Store now! This is GREAT!

  28. Connie Weiss says:

    I love it Jen! Tell me….is there anything you can't decorate?

  29. StephanieinSD says:

    C.U.T.E!!!! Love this idea for old ugly trays!

  30. Sue (Someone's Mom) says:

    You make it sound so simple. Some of us don't do things quite as easily! This really turned out lovely.


  31. Awesome! Your projects and tutorials are always so great.

    I'm hosting my first giveaway on my blog and wanted to invite you to stop by for a chance to win free art print(s):


  32. What?! Who would have thought? Srsly. You have a designer's eye, I don't know how you do it but I LOVE it!

  33. The Blonde Duck says:

    That is so clever! You're truly brilliant!

  34. OMG what a cute idea! Now i'm going to have to go to the dollar store before it snows again so I have a snow day project to work on!

  35. Are you serious!!! I love it!!! Off to get some pizza pans…

  36. What an adorable project. Kudos to you for cleverness. Glad that I came across your blog today. I'm definitely a new follower.

  37. K'sKronicles says:

    What a great project…! I love the black/white design. And the treats on top look yummmm:))

  38. The Single Nester says:

    Wow! I would have seen that pizza pan and thought 'Hey. A pizza pan.' You are awesome and I love how you see the possibility in everything!

  39. So cute! Need to run to dollar tree now!

  40. Your creative vision is like nothing I've ever seen before! You truly amaze me!!!

  41. Kim's Treasures says:

    Love it!!!

  42. So stinking cute! love it :) Seriously how do you think of this stuff?? amazing….

  43. Michael and Shelley says:

    Oh my gosh you are so dang creative!! You're seriously my craft hero now.

  44. Heather @ Sugar N Spice Mostly Nice says:

    I'm thinking soo cute…hmmm wonder if I could do it then the dreaeded words mod podge were used and it was down hill from there! Why does mod modge freak me out so bad?! I think I just need to bite the bullet and give it a go!

  45. I LOVE this! It is beautiful! Thank you for sharing!


  46. It's gorgeous! I'm going to have to give it a try. Thanks for sharing such a fun and usefull idea!

  47. I love your tray, it's beautiful! I also enjoy the dollar store; I get butterflies of excitement when I shop there!

    I would love the recipe of the desserts on your tray-they look delish!

  48. WOW amazing, I am a true follower now!!! love love love this. I'm off to the store. thanks for sharing

  49. GENIUS! I made a chore board out of an old pizza pan last week. You can see it on my blog!

  50. CakeBallers says:

    what a great idea! making a trip to the dollar store this weekend…

  51. amazing as ever. I did some crafting too and will show them off next week.

  52. Kelli @ RTSM says:

    Okay obviously that should have said MATTE or glossy?

  53. Kelli @ RTSM says:

    That is so cute! I love that you put feet on it…such a great idea! I have a question…what kind of Mod Podge do you use…the matter or glossy?

  54. So cute! Who would have thought? You, of course! :)

  55. Embellish-Vintage Home Embellishments says:

    Very creative!

  56. You are UNreal!!!!!

  57. Stephanie says:

    Absolutely Fantastic, you have such a creative mind.

  58. Jensamom23 says:

    VERY cute!

  59. You keep getting more and more creative! I love this idea…and I love serving trays.

  60. Jenglamgirl says:

    Jen, I don't just want to do this, i have to do this. WHEN I DO i will link up to your blog and maybe email you the one I make. SO DARLING! Love the paper choice as well. P.S. you are totally justified with your love for the dollar store, I AM WITH YOU ON THAT ONE. See ya later friend, JGG

  61. Brilliant. Your tray is so freakin' cool.

    I love that you use Mod Podge. My dad used to use it year's ago. It just makes me smile.

  62. Love the tray!!! Love everything you do!! I also think the cupcakes on the tray are adorable…would you be open to share a tutorial on the those, as well???

  63. Me and My Pink Mixer says:

    Oh my gosh – you are amazing! I love this. Running to the dollar store on my lunch break – this will be a great project while I am snowed in this weekend.

  64. Can you just come to Texas (aka my house) and make things for me?? All I need is a week with you- your kids won't miss you a bit!!!


  65. Another project to add to my list. I love it! I tried your burlap wreath and I love how it turned out. You'll have to check it out. Keep the craft ideas coming. Your Awesome!

  66. soo cool! I have zero serving trays, this would be great to make and have!!!! Thanks for posting!

  67. Jessica @ This Blessed Life says:

    This is great!


    Cool project!

  69. Tammy@InStitches says:

    Now I'm wishing I saved all my old knobs (or knew where they are). You are so clever !

  70. Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions says:

    I love this idea, Jen! I like that you did it for everyday use and not just a holiday ~ you could even use this outside when it's warmer for BBQ's. Love it and great tutorial!

  71. I'm going to try that!

  72. That is tooo cute! I can see a two or three tier one too! Probably have to use smaller trays and different sizes, but that would be so cute! I think I would always make sure whatever food was put on it, has a liner under it and not put the food directly on the poly'd surface! Love it love it love it!

  73. This is such a cute project and would make a great gift, too. I see a trip to the dollar store in my future!

  74. What a beautiful tray Jen! You always come up with the most fantastic ideas! xxoo

  75. So so cute! I can't wait to try this myself- thanks for sharing! And, I agree- the Dollar Store is indeed mezmerising!

  76. Michelle M. says:

    LOVE it! Such a fun idea!

  77. Catherine peacelovesweater@blogspot.com says:

    You are brilliant! That tray is gorgeous!

  78. Michelle @ Sweet Something says:

    Awesome Jen!

  79. Absolutely Gorgeous!

  80. Joanne Kennedy says:

    Cute idea. Is it ok to put food directly on the tray when it's finished? I guess you would have to read the finish to see if it is huh?


  81. Michelle aka GirlyGirlBead says:

    This is so cute! And actually looks easy enough that maybe even I could do it. Not to mention, its a cheap project so its in my budget!

  82. Julie Harward says:

    I can't believe this…I will look more closely at the $ store…truly so cute! Come say hi 😀

  83. This turned out SOOO great! I just adore it! Thanks for such an awesome explanation of how to make it! :)

  84. I hate misspelled words! I typed that out so fast and hit publish just like I was somebody. Dang it.

    Tomorrow, tomorrow.

  85. I think that was brilliant! I love it, I'm going to the Dollor Store tomarrow.

    Great idea, thank you.

    Love your stuff and I love your blog.

  86. sleepyhead designs studio says:

    Ok, that is really cute! You are so clever!

  87. You always have such cute ideas. I am going to try and make some of these to coordinate with a baby shower I am giving. Thanks for your inspiration..

  88. Ana @ Get Craftin says:

    I love this transformation! It's defiantly going on my to-do list! I love your blog! :)

  89. It looks great! And it is even cuter when you find out how cheap and cheerful it is!

  90. Jenni @ nest to keep says:

    Oh, this is fantastic! Your tray looks AMAZING! I am definitely going to buy a metal pizza pan or two the next time I'm at the dollar store and try this! :)

    Thank you so much for sharing the crafts and projects you do; I am always so inspired by them! :)

    Have a good night! :)

  91. Two Beautiful Girls Mommy says:

    LOVE IT! I can not wait to make one of these and some delicious treats to go on top!

  92. P@nmyfreetime.blogspot.com says:

    this is amazingly beautiful!!!

  93. shortmama says:

    Adorable my dear!

  94. Love it–It is so pretty (those treats don't look to bad either!).

  95. ♥Amber Filkins♥ says:

    That is such a great idea, Jen!! I love the little feet & the drawer pull handles. I've seen a serving tray made out of a cabinet door and drawer pulls as the handles. I've always wanted to do one. Now I'll have to try this one too!

    ♥ ♥ ♥

  96. Cute! You are so CRAFTY!

    Love you!

  97. Whatever Dee-Dee wants says:

    I am going to have to try this out. What a great idea!

  98. Bri Buzali says:

    WOW! this is sooooo adorable! I can't wait to make some to match my college apartment, we're always making cookies and cupcakes and these trays would be perfect for that!

  99. Valerie Jean says:

    Are you kidding me??? You are full of fun & fabulous ideas:) I love it!!!

  100. Jennifer@Wheretheheartis says:

    Oh I love it! I used one of those same papers for the back of my open shelving I just posted about in my kitchen. One of these would match perfectly! Thanks! Oh and I love the dollar store too. So addicting.

  101. Amanda@Imperfectly Beautiful says:

    So cute! Your mod podge skills never cease to amaze me!!!



  1. […] a gift that won’t cost you an arm and a leg to make!  This Dollar Store Serving Tray is absolutely fabulous and could be customized to match any […]