I wrote this post as part of a paid campaign with Plaid Crafts, Michaels and Blueprint Social.
The opinions in this post are my own.


DIY Decorative Wood Tray :: Wall Art for Spring with Hope Quote


I love birds!  This time of year, backyard feeders are busy with countless songbirds feasting. Just like me… I’m sure our feathered friends cannot wait for spring!  But, until spring comes, we can have fun creating beauty for our living spaces with Spring Wood Surfaces from Michaels.

Wood Tray Wall Art for Spring~ a Plaid-Michael's Challenge at AnExtraordinaryDay.net


Recently I was blessed to be selected to participate in the Plaid: Michaels Spring Wood Run Challenge. Imagine my thrill when I opened my box of goodies to discover Spring Wood Surfaces in the form of birds, bird houses, bird cages, and a beautiful tray with the most intricate lattice style cut-outs on the side, all in my supply box.  Plus, lots of fun Mod Podge and FolkArt supplies were in the box, too.  Here’s a look:

Michaels Spring Wood Surfaces and Plaid Products  Decorative Wood Tray with Hope Quote


Hmmm… what do I create from this wonderful array of supplies?

The challenge was to use the wood surface provided, which was the tray, and create something special using any of the supplies in my box of goodies.  After a little thought, I decided that I would create some wall art for spring with a favorite hope quote.  I’ve always loved these words of Emily Dickinson…

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I’ve heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.


My husband and I daily cling to Hope.

What better reason for me to choose the love birds and the words from Dickinson for this project to make something beautiful for our living area and to serve as a reminder to keep Hope in our hearts.

I love how it turned out and know you’ll want to make one too.

Let’s make a DIY Decorative Wood Tray with Spring Wood Surfaces…

Supplies Needed:

  • Spring Wood Surfaces Tray
  • Sheer Aqua Mod Podge
  • Plain Paper
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Sharpie
  • Mod Podge (non colored)
  • Love Birds Spring Wood Surfaces
  • FolkArt Multi-Surface Paint – Lemon Silk Pearl
  • FolkArt Multi-Surface Paint –Deep Ocean Blue
  • Assortment of paint brushes… 1 inch bristle or pad brush and small artist brushes
  • Brayer, not essential but helpful
  • Small paper or plastic plates or small sour cream containers to hold Mod Podge and paints
  • Plastic or Kraft paper to protect work surface


DIY Decorative Wood Tray Steps:

  • Take a blank piece of white paper and cut it to fit in the tray, with a border of the tray around the paper as shown, so the tray will frame the quote on the paper.  After cutting to size, set it aside for later.Wall Art for Spring Tutorial at AnExtraordinaryDay.net


  • Grab a paint brush and paint your Spring Wood Surfaces tray, inside and outside leaving the back plain.  I love blue mason jars and since I received Sheer Aqua Mod Podge I chose to paint the tray that color.  It gives it a coastal vibe as well.  You might choose to use a smaller artist brush for painting the lattice portion of the tray to prevent filling the crevices with paint.  While the paint is drying (approximately 20 minutes), move on to the next step.

Coat Tray with  Sheer Aqua Mod Podge  - Wall Art for Spring  - AnExtraordinaryDay.net


  • Using some blank paper… practice your hand-lettering skills.  (I was pretty rusty and needed a lot of practice.)  You could print a quote out on a laser printer if you prefer.

Hand-lettering practice for the decorative tray wall art quote at AnExtraordinaryDay.net


  • Take your blank sheet of paper which has been cut to size for the tray, place your Spring Wood Surfaces element where you’d like it to be, and make some pencil notations for properly spacing your lettering for the quote.

Position wood love birds and lettering for decorative wall art at AnExtraordinaryDay.net


  • Hand letter your quote and allow the ink to dry.  (The love birds are positioned here for illustration only.)

Hope quote - hand-lettered for the decorative wall art tray at AnExtraordinaryDay.net


  • While the ink is drying apply more Sheer Aqua Mod Podge to the center surface of the tray.  Wait 20 minutes before applying your hand-lettered quote.
  • While the Mod Podge is setting up, paint the Spring Wood Surfaces love birds with a small brush.  I used Lemon Silk Pearl and Deep Ocean Blue and then mixed the two to get the green shade for the stem and leaves.

paint love birds for decorate wall art tray at AnExtraordinaryDay.net


  • Using a non-colored Mod Podge, brush Mod Podge to the back of the hand-lettered quote paper completely.  The paper will curl some… don’t worry about that.
  • Immediately and carefully, center and position the coated sheet to the Spring Wood Surfaces tray.  If you have a brayer… great, if not, carefully smooth the paper to eliminate any bubbles and to prevent wrinkling.

Apply quote to decorate tray - AnExtraordinaryDay.net


  • Coat the surface of the quote with the Sheer Aqua Mod Podge and continue coating the entire tray for its second coat of color.  I love the watery appearance of the quote.

Coat the hand-letter quote and tray with aqua Mod Podge - AnExtraordinaryDay.net


  • Apply Mod Podge to the back of the wood love birds and position on the quote, press firmly and allow time to dry.

Decorative Wood Tray  Wall Art for Spring with Hope Quote at AnExtraordinaryDay.net

  • Set your completed project on a shelf or attach a hanger to the back of the tray to hang on the wall.
  • Step back and admire your finished work!

This project contained  a number of “firsts” for me….

Mod Podging a wooden element, Mod Podging a hand-lettered quote and a nearly full sheet of paper onto anything (I definitely need to get a brayer!), and detail hand-painting of the birds.  Challenges are great, because they get us to do things that we typically don’t do.  I enjoyed the challenge and look forward to experimenting more with Spring Wood Surfaces and Plaid products from Michaels.

You know how I struggle with perfection?

This project was not perfect.  My hand lettering left a little to be desired.  There were bubbles in the decoupaged quote because I didn’t have a brayer.  The painting was not perfect.  All things I’m sure you noticed.  However… it looks pretty good, I had fun making it, and most of all… it will serve as an attractive reminder to keep our eyes fixed on the Giver of all Hope.

Spring Wood Surfaces  Decorative Wood Tray with Hope Quote at AnExtraordinaryDay.net


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  1. WOW, this is beautiful! You did a fabulous job!

    • Diane says

      Thank you so much Marilyn! It surely was a fun project. 🙂
      All the best for an extraordinary day!!

  2. bobbi duncan says

    Love your 3-D tray! I am in the process of trying to find an English countryside fox hunt scene to decoupage onto glass and insert into a wooden tray for our family room as they can cost so much to buy.

    • Diane says

      I hope you find just what you’re looking for. There are so many graphics available online now. 🙂
      Thanks for your kind words about the tray.

  3. Lucy Beliveau says

    Love this project! I think your hand writing is great!! Trays are my favorite! Aqua is such a good pop color. My kitchen is teal and I love it! This is the kind of project that lends itself to a multitude of ideas!

    • Diane says

      You are too kind about the hand lettering Lucy. 🙂
      Since blue Ball & Mason jars make my heart sing, I was thrilled to have been given the Sheer Aqua Mod Podge. What a beautiful color! 🙂 I’m so glad you like it too.
      I bet your kitchen is gorgeous in teal.

  4. Gwen says

    Yes. Fun project! And thank you for the intro to colored ModgePodge. Your handwriting did turn out great! I often times in teaching skipped the cut out letters and handwrite phrases instead!!

    • Diane says

      Awww… thanks Gwen!
      I know… colored Mod Podge!! I was thrilled to discover it too. Actually I’m pretty new to MP so overall this was great fun for me.
      Gwen… I would have liked to have been one of your students. You are an amazing teacher… there’s no doubt about it. [[hugs]]

  5. This is so pretty, Diane. You did a great job putting everything together!

    • Diane says

      Thanks friend!!! You are always so wonderfully encouraging. [[hugs]]

  6. Diane, I love the 3D look of the tray. What a super cute idea!

    • Diane says

      Denyse…thank you so much!! You put a big smile on my face. [[hugs]]

  7. Mel says

    Yup….you are wayyy to hard on you! I think it’s lovely. And who knew there was ModgePodge in colours!! Wow…

    • Diane says

      🙂 Thanks, Mel!! Who knew?! Isn’t that aqua gorgeous?

  8. What a great project! I just love that quote! And really? I did not notice the imperfections. 🙂

  9. I love this quote! And the color you chose for the tray is so pretty 🙂

    • Diane says

      Thanks Rachel! I too love the freshness of the color in the dead of winter! 🙂
      All the best!

  10. Malia says

    This is darling Diane, I love it!

  11. Love how your tray turned out!

    • Diane says

      Emily, thank you so much!! I smile whenever I walk by it.
      All the best for an extraordinary day!

  12. what a sweet project, love the wording!

  13. Diane says

    Awww… thanks Bonnie! You are so sweet!
    Hope your day is filled with extraordinary creativity!

  14. Kendra @ www.joyinourhome.com says

    Thanks SO much for sharing with us at our party, Diane! Hope is such a beautiful word! And your handwriting is fabulous! Hope your week has been blessed 🙂 xo

  15. Susie says

    I just picked up the EXACT tray at Michael’s today and, of course, had to see online if anyone else had done it. I have a little different idea what to do with mine. It will ultimately be a tea tray for my ottoman in the great room, where I will set my tea cup during TV or web browsing on my laptop. I also bought the “Embrace the Journey” laser cut and four flowery/swirly cutout embellishments for the corners. I will paint mine similarly to yours, as I just love that whisper of paint, but to see the wood grain underneath as you do. Picking the colors will be the hard part for me, but I’m thinking spring greens and bright flower colors in spots. After it’s all done, I will get a piece of glass cut to fit and secure it with silicone on a rim of narrow wood pieces around the inside perimeter, the thickness of the cutouts. I’ll let you know how it turns out. I’m very excited about this project! Thanks for your blog.

    • Diane says

      Susie… your vision for the tray is extraordinary! When you get it completed, I’d be delighted to have you share a photo of it on my An Extraordinary Day Facebook page. And I’ll share it with readers there, too. I’m so excited for you! Thanks so much for taking time to share! 🙂
      All the best for An Extraordinary Day!

  16. How sweet! I love that quote by Emily Dickinson. You were so creative in envisioning this tray and producing the final product. It’s delightful. I saw your link at Share it One More Time link party.

  17. Jann Olson says

    Diane, this project was perfect for you! I love birds also and I have a picture hanging over my tub with that same verse. Thanks for sharing your cute project with SYC.

  18. Super cute!! You are quite talented!! I would love for you to stop by and share your stuff on My 2 Favorite Things on Thursday Link Party!! …It’s still open…http://www.cookinandcraftin.com/my-2-favorite-things-on-thursday-link-party-4/

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