The Misfit Cafeteria Trays

Misfit Trays I blame these!  I blame these adorable metal cafeteria trays for our entire theme this year at Christmas….. Have you ever spotted something in a flea market or thrift store and you just couldn’t stop thinking about it?  For months, I thought about these trays after seeing them in June at one of our favorite flea markets in Victor, Montana…  I thought about how fabulous they would be at a trailside cowboy cookout or at a picnic by Lake Como… For months we drove by the flea market on route to Missoula and I wondered if someone had snatched up my beautiful trays.  I didn’t have time to stop when it was open and when I did have time, it was closed.  Then finally….. one chilly October day, it was open and I ran into the market with a mission!  I went straight to the area where they sat collecting dust with chipped china piled on top of them.   Where are they??   I wandered around lost for a few minutes and disappointed and then Greg (seeing my sadness) took me by the hand and led me right to them. I guess he was sick of hearing me go on and on and on about some silly trays.  Who knows what institution they were at originally… A set of 6 for $10.00.  I was determined to use them for the Christmas Table scape and I was not about to give up!  This became more challenging than I thought because I truly wanted to use things we already had around the house.  As Christmas Day approached and guests arrived, I played with ideas and looked at what I had to work with:

  • Wine Bottles
  • White spray paint
  • Fresh Evergreens
  • Scraps of fabric
  • Mismatched silverware
  • Shop Towels
  • Burlap and ribbon from the Burlap Garland on the tree and
  • Shower Curtain Rings-  I adore shower curtain rings!

Shower Curtain Rings

I already had the No Sew Burlap Table Runner

Burlap Table Runner

So, I grabbed the shower curtain rings and fabric scraps and began tying knots

Burlap n Rags Napkin Rings

Ok I spent $3 at Target in the dollar bins area because of the cute little burlap covered buckets and I stuck some candles in those…


 So, sticking with the theme on the Tree and the Mantle, I spray painted some more wine bottles and snipped some more greenery and viola!

Burlap Christmas Tablescape

I love a good challenge!  Sometimes, its rather fun to see what you can come up with… There are endless ways to use these trays (better ways) and believe me I will be using them for other meals, but this made for such a lovely Montana Christmas!

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