Article Photo

DIY upcycled mail tray

27 Mar 2019

While still perfectly functional, this old mail tray was looking a bit unfashionable. As part of the Upcycling for Good project, Sarah’s aim was not to change its purpose at all, but rather update it with some on-trend colours so it could be used and enjoyed again. She gave it a whole new look using colours from the Resene Whites and Neutrals collection.

You will need:

Painter’s masking tape
Resene Quick Dry primer undercoat
Resene testpots in your choice of colours (Sarah used Resene Villa White, Resene Double Ash and Resene Masala)
Testpot brush
2 small artist’s detail brushes

Step 1 Sand down the mail tray and apply a coat of Resene Quick Dry primer undercoat.

Step 2 Once the primer is dry, apply two coats of your chosen colour. Sarah used Resene Masala, which would suit most neutral modern interiors, so that this mail tray could blend in on a countertop or desk.

Step 3 Once the basecoats are dry, mask out some uneven shapes by hand using painter’s tape. Sarah chose to make imperfect shapes to create a fun design, which she painted with two coats of Resene Villa White.

Step 4 Once dry the shapes are dry, freehand paint some strokes over the top in Resene Double Ash to give an interesting effect once the masking tape has been removed.

Step 5 Remove all the masking tape and, if necessary, clean up some of the edges with a small detail brush dipped in Resene Masala.

Place your completed mail tray on your kitchen bench, hallway table or desk for holding your mail and/or stationery items such as pens, envelopes, rubber bands etc. You could even use this elsewhere for storing makeup or paint brushes.

top tip: If you don’t have enough mail to fill this tray, reinvent it as a magazine holder, spice rack or use it to hold your favourite cookbooks. Or, paint the front panel in Resene Blackboard Paint and use it as a handy writing space.

project and images Sarah Herring

These DIYs are brought to you by Upcycling for Good, a collaboration between Resene and The Salvation Army family stores. The project asks keen DIYers to upcycle second-hand items using Resene paint – look out for this regular feature on Habitat by Resene.