Trays are the Area Rug of Your Table

I can’t even begin to explain my love of a good tray. They serve a million different functions. We use vintage bamboo trays when we are having BBQs so our guests can hold all their refreshments. I use them to help corral toys around our house - they are especially helpful when playing with play-doh or coloring and we are going between the kitchen and the playroom. I also keep one at my front door so I can throw all my junk in it during the week and then take it around the house with me at the end of the week and put all the items where they belong.

But the best use for a tray, in my opinion, is to help draw the eye to a collection. Just like an area rug helps pull the room together, a well placed tray will help pull the decor of your table together.

Below is an example. In the first picture, I have laid out items I am using to put together a bar for an upcoming dinner party. The first picture shows them grouped together and the second picture shows them grouped together with a tray.


Isn’t your eye more drawn to the collection being housed on the tray than without?


A few more examples:

I especially think it is important to use trays to coral your items on table clothes. It helps settle the eye with a focal point.


In our main family room, I do not have a desk so I use a tray like the one below to house mail and notecards to help keep me organized.


What are some of your favorite uses for trays?

Looking for a few vintage trays add to your collection? Check out my Etsy store here!