Ever wished the colour of your play tray was more appealing? I am going to show you how to paint your play trays!
I find these trays the perfect size for our toddlers to explore, but always wished the colour of the tray was more interesting. One day while at Bunnings I was drooling over the beautiful Porters Paints sample pots and thought how nice it would be to have trays in those delicious shades.
After a fair bit of trial and error and talking with the paint reps, I found a long lasting process to keep the trays surviving the wear and tear of excited little people.
So read on as I share how to paint your play trays!
Play trays are a staple resource in many Early Childhood Centres and also in plenty of homes.
A play tray (also known as a small worlds’ tray), is any shallow container that can hold a variety of play resources, sensory ingredients and small equipment. There are a few great products available, but I’m using the very popular Kmart play tray. They retail for about $8-$10 each and only come in black.
4. Shake up your sample pot of paint, then using your brush, mix the paint ensuring you’re loosening the sediment on the bottom.
5. Start painting your tray, covering all surfaces, except the underneath base. Your first coat will seem quite messy & streaky don’t worry your second coat will look much cleaner.
7. Leave to dry. Depending on your climate it might take 1-2 hours. Repeat the process twice more, this time also concentrating on really covering the top edge of your tray. This is the spot that paint is most likely to chip from wear and tear, so really coat it well. I often use the roller for the third coat as it really gives a lovely smooth effect.
8. Wash brushes and rollers out in running water completely and leave to dry overnight, along with your tray. This allows the paint to cure overnight.
9. The next day, shake your tin of varnish before opening. Use your brush to mix thoroughly, ensuring to mix the sediment off the bottom of the tin.
10. Apply varnish evenly over your painted tray. Ensure you really cover the base & the top rim of the tray as they are the areas that most likely to get scratched. I apply two coats of varnish to ensure the tray paint is really sealed.
11. Allow to dry again overnight so your varnish cures.
12. Hooray! You now have a beautiful play tray to fill with your children’s favourite play things!
Now if this all seems fun but you just don’t have the time or inclination, I have done all the hard work for you and painted some play trays all ready to go! You can purchase them here.
How play trays can be incorporated into your room.
Now I’d love to know your thoughts on using play trays! Do you use them with your children and what are they loving at the moment?