Two buck breakfast in bed tray revamp

Two buck breakfast in bed tray revamp with Mod Podge photo transfer medium

When I saw this breakfast tray marked $2.00 at a local thrift store I knew I had to get it.Thrift-Store-Breakfast-Tray

Furthermore, in a rare moment of clarity, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it and it involved Mod Podge Transfer Medium and  croissant.

For this project I used:Tray-Supplies

  • Heirloom White Spray Paint
  • Trisodium Phosphate (TSP)
  • Envirotex Lite
  • Sander
  • An old candle (not pictured)
  • Sandpaper (220 grit and 100 grit)
  • Mod Podge Photo Transfer Medium
  • Mod Podge Furniture
  • Brush
  • Rags
  • My printed design

To get rid of any dirt or oils that would mess up my paint job I cleaned the entire tray with TSP.

I wanted an antique look to the tray with wear and tear on the edges  but I didn’t want the original bright blue color to show.   I sanded the entire tray using a 220 grit sandpaper (the sanding roughs up the surface giving it “teeth” which allow the next layer of paint to stick better) and then, using my power sander  I sanded all the way down to the wood along the edges and corners.

A quick rub with the candle on those sanded edges creates a barrier that prevents the spray paint from sticking in those spots.

I gave the tray two light coats of the Antique White spray paint and set it aside to dry thoroughly (the spray paint dries quickly but I needed to give the waxed sections a little more time to harden up so by “thoroughly” I mean overnight).

Next I ran the 100 grit sandpaper over those waxed edges to remove the paint and leave me with an antiqued tray.

It was time for the Mod Podging.  I’d been eager to try the Mod Podge Transfer Medium.  It’s actually designed to work with photos but I had a different idea and I was really happy with how it worked.

Mod Podge Transfer Medium requires you to use a “dry toner” (laser) copy of your graphics which is available at any Kinkos or Staples if you don’t have access to a laser printer.

grand-hotel-graphicI came up with a design that I liked – just some simple text on a red band.I work in Adobe Illustrator when I’m designing but the same look can be achieved in basic MSWord using shapes from the graphics bar and the built in Word Art function.

I created a mirror of my image before I printed out and trimmed it down to the edges (if you’re using MSWord here is a tutorial about how to create mirrored text).


The Mod Podge Transfer Medium was easy to use.  I followed the instructions and  applied it to the printed side of the graphic and laid it down on the tray.  Working quickly I smoothed out any bumps using a brush and my damp fingers and cleaned up any excess medium that had been squeezed out in the process.  I then left it to dry overnight.


The next morning I took a very wet towel and laid it over the image and began to gently rub away the layers of paper.
It was quite easy and I was happy with the results but I wanted a little bit more distressing so once it had dried I went back in with a 220 grit sandpaper and distressed it a bit more and then sealed the graphic with a coat of regular Mod Podge.

After giving that a few hours to dry I mixed and poured the Envirotex following the directions on the box and after a bit of cure time.


Make a breakfast tray out of a $2 thrift store find

CROISSANT! (and coffee…. I really needed some coffee).

Make a breakfast in bed tray from a thrift store find!

Make a breakfast in bed tray from a thrift store find!

Please do swing by my blog Cheltenham Road to catch up on my various crafting adventures and latest tutorials.  Or you can always find me via my Etsy store filled with my vintage styled projects.

Also, if you have any questions about this tutorial please don’t hesitate to ask – I’ll monitor the site and try to get back to you as quickly as possible.

 Notes and Tips and thoughts for next time:

  • Mod Podge Hard Coat would be a great substitute for the Envirotex.
  • I used the Transfer Medium because I wanted a vintage look.  Next time, to create even more distressing (without the sanding) I think I’ll be less thorough about pressing the graphic into the Transfer Medium.  Or I may just try crumpling the graphic up before smoothing it out and sticking it down.
  • I used the font called “Market Deco” which is available for free at (an amazing resource for free fonts)


  1. says

    Beautiful job and tutorial. I left you a question on your website regarding the thickness of paper and a problem I have.

  2. says

    I am about to attempt a mod podge covering on an old brown/faux wood grain office table. The wood grain is peeling off. Any suggestions on whether I should prime it 1st? and do you think the envirotex would be a good sealing layer?I live in AZ and this table usually lives outside. I am hoping to not have to deal with stickyness in the heat. Still would like to bring it in to use as a craft table too. Thanks for the help! Love your blog…

    • says

      Hi Beth. Priming the top though not absolutely necessary would be a good choice particularly if the table top is a dark color. If you left it the dark color there is a chance that that color would bleed through or just darken whatever paper you’re Mod Podging onto the top. Envirotex would work as a sealant but if your table has no edges (like a tray) then the job can get a bit messy. Mod Podge Outdoor Formula would be easier to work with and is designed to hold up to the elements – you’ll want to do a few coats and give it lots of time to fully cure. Hope that helps. David.

      • beth in az says

        thanks for the tips David. When I get it all finished, I will be sure to send you some pictures. I think maps will be a great topping for this table. I have a couple stashed away just ready to tear up and mod podge!