Last week I found not one, but several wicker pieces that I like to collect and use to decorate with. I spent $3.25 on the lot. I love the round wicker tray, but also found a rectangular one, too.
When I first saw it I passed it over as it had a hole in the middle and then I remembered the white wicker tray that I used for the little table I made a few weeks ago for my living room. It had a solid wood bottom. That gave me all the incentive I needed as I knew I could add a solid insert and make the tray usable –so I brought it home along with the other baskets you see in the photo and got to work.
I love using wicker trays – they remind me of the beach, but the uneven weave of the wicker is not the best for carrying drinks – they tip too easily. A solid bottom is needed for stability. I made an insert for each of the trays using a piece of Dollar Store FomCor, fabric, and Heat N’ Bond Iron-On Vinyl. Best of all – now I have a matching set of trays. I bought the fabric at JoAnn’s Fabrics. It is by Waverly: pattern Luminary.
All in time for some Red, White, and Blue festivities.
How to Make Wicker Tray Liners
1. Measure the bottom of the tray and cut the FomCor to size. For a round tray, use a compass set to the diameter of the tray bottom to create the perfect circle.
2. Make sure the inserts fit: trim if needed.
3. Lay FomCor inserts on wrong side of fabric and cut around leaving a 2” – 3” of fabric all around to fold to underside of FomCor.
4. Press fabric and then apply Heat N’ Bond Vinyl on right side of fabric. You can find Heat N’ Bond Vinyl at any sewing store. It is very easy to apply – peel the paper backing from the vinyl, lay the sticky side of the vinyl down on fabric, lay the shiny side of the paper backing on top (the paper backing acts as a pressing cloth between the vinyl and iron) and then press to adhere. Remove the paper backing. Let it cool and your fabric is now vinyl-ized.
The fabric on the left has vinyl applied and the right is uncovered. The vinyl comes in matte or glossy finish. I used the glossy. You can see it doesn’t change the fabric, just protects it. It lets you add your favorite fabric patterns in all places you normally wouldn’t. Now if the fabric gets dirty, it can be easily wiped clean.
5. Lay the fused fabric right side down and center the FomCor insert on top. Cut the corners off of the fabric when working with a circular insert as you do not need the excess at the corners. Create a round shape around the insert, but leave enough to wrap around to the back side. (You don’t want to add too much fabric bulk when you bring the fabric to the back of the insert). Bring the fabric around the edge to the back side of the FomCor and using your fingers pleat the fabric so it neatly follows the circular shape. Use scotch tape to hold the pleats into place while you are working on it, once you have the fabric attached – use clear wide packing tape to secure. The rectangular tray was easier as I just wrapped it like a gift using clear mailing tape to attach. For either shape, make sure to keep the pleats and corners as flat as possible.
Turn it over and insert into your tray. Now you can safely carry glasses on a wicker tray.