Thursday, May 20, 2010

A Wedding Gift Idea

Before attending the wedding in Chicago recently, I asked the mother of the bride where the couple was registered. She rattled off the list and then said, "But don't be afraid to go off the list." Interpretation: "I certainly think you can get a little more creative than selecting a gift from the registry."


And what came to mind? Customizing a tray. So despite my saying in yesterday's post that I need a break from projects having to do with sanding and painting, here I am launching into a new painting project. Etiquette says that you have up to a year following the wedding to give a gift, but I know if I wait too long time will slip away and the year will be gone!


The tray I'll be making for the couple will be similar to the one above, though in their favorite shades of gray.


With a little imagination and a simple wooden tray, the design options are limitless. Here painters tape and spray paint were used to create a tray with a strong graphic element, in boldly contrasting colors. Other ideas to customize this gift idea would be to stencil the couple's initials on the tray or get inspiration from a design element on the wedding invitation.


The first step was to buy a nicely constructed wooden tray. I've used this same Pottery Barn tray for similar projects in the past, with great results, so returned to get another.


Next came the hard part, putting my sander up to a perfectly fine tray! Be careful not to remove too much of the finish, a little bit will do. Sand the surface just enough to remove the top coat of varnish and some of the stain.


Next, moving out the garage, I came in to continue the project at the kitchen island and turned on the latest episode of 9 by Design...which was waiting on TiVo. Talk about inspiration to be creative!


With the crazy energy of the Novogratz family in the background, primer was painted across the surface of the tray with a brush. Yes, you could use spray primer, but I like the subtle lines that are left behind when applying primer with a brush. It takes a bit of careful brushing to get the lines to run across the surface in somewhat straight lines, but they will add a lot to the final look. Trust me...or just use spray, either way works!


While I continue working on this gift, I'll show the progress tomorrow, look at what my husband gave the groom.


A USA Soccer Team Jersey. I thought the idea was slightly strange when he first mentioned this plan to me. But I was wrong, the groom said it was the best gift he had gotten. Looking back at our wedding, I bet this would have been my husband's favorite wedding gift to receive as well!

25 comments :

  1. I'm sure they will be thrilled to receive a gift with your special touch. Can't wait to see what you do.

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  2. Can't wait to see the finished product! My husband would have loved that as well - MEN!

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  3. Oooh, I just know that tray is going to turn out well. And the soccer jersey is such a nice touch! You two should always be allowed to go off the registries!

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  4. I can't wait to see the results. What a wonderful personalized gift!

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  5. I can't wait to see the finished tray, Janell! The inspiration piece is beautiful.

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  6. Isn't it funny how men have an entirely different view on wedding gifts? My husband now buys all the men a Lowe's gift card in addition to my "pretty little items". According to him, "all the wedding presents are for the girls", so now he makes sure the men get something too. But really, don't the men benefit from those mixers and bakeware?!? Anyway, great idea with the tray- I'm sure it'll be gorgeous. ;)

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  7. I love trays, I have several and can't wait to see your after.

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  8. I remember when you did the turqoise tray. I wanted one then! Now I know where you get the trays from;-) I'll keep this project in mind! I can't wait to see it finished!

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  9. i would be excited to receive anything you made...can't say the same for everyone. this tray is going to be a hit!

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  10. I'm constantly bookmarking your posts Janell! I love this idea and plan to borrow the idea. This would have made a wonderful Mother's Day gift for my mom. Her birthday is coming up in August, I'm sure she'd love to receive a custom tray.

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  11. My husband would finally understand a woman's wedding excitement if he had received a gift like that, just for him! A very cute idea (both the jersey & tray) that I will have to remember. :)

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  12. Very nice gift! I just did a tray makeover with one I found from the thrift sotre a little paint, poly and fabric and it turned out nice

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  13. Can't wait to see how it'll turn out! I'm sure they'll be touched that you gave them something that you made personally.

    I'm not a big fan of registries, though I understand their necessity. I would love to have gotten a tray like this for our wedding!

    Kelly

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  14. Writing this post I thought of all the brides that might read this and think, "OH NO! I want all my lovelies I registered for! Please don't send homemade gifts!!"

    :) I think it really depends on your relationship with the couple and if you decide to create something yourself make certain it will be a beautiful item that will be appreciated!

    My husband and I didn't register for gifts, as we got married at San Francisco's City Hall, with a party in Chicago the following day. Then off to Paris for our honeymoon, somehow registering didn't really seem appropriate. I now joke that I want to have a big anniversary party, renew our vows and REGISTER!! Would love some lovely china, crystal and silver! (kind of...)

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  15. Janell I think a special work of art from you will be very meaningful to the bride and groom, I can't wait to see the result & to try this!

    Karena
    Art by Karena

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  16. I love it! I think I still have breakfast trays I got from my wedding a million years ago. They're so ugly, but now I know what to do with them!
    Lila Ferraro
    Queen Bedroom Sets

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  17. I love going off a registry for good friends. My favorite gifts from my own wedding: a monogrammed Christmas tree skirt my friend made me (I think of her every year when I pull it out after Thanksgiving) and a gift certificate for a couples' massage!

    Can't wait to see what you do with this tray...I think I have my own hanging out in a closet somewhere that could use some sexing up.

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  18. What a wonderful idea for a wedding gift. A tray is always needed and one that you are personalizing is even better- you are so thoughtful!

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  19. I wish you came to my wedding ;)

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  20. You are brilliant. I want that red one!!!

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  21. Love it and they will too.

    xo,
    cristin

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  22. Awesome inspiration! I'm off to the local Pier 1 to rummage through their clearance section for trays!

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  23. You funny & creative girl! I am coming back tomorrow!

    ox, Mon

    http://www.splendidwillow.com

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  24. Nice Blog! Well most of your content and image is original and informative. /many thanks for sharing this, cheers.
    Wedding Gift Ideas

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