Improve your spa experience by creating your own DIY wooden bath tray.
By Brittany Walls
July/ August 2017
A relaxing bath after a long day of work is one of the best ways to unwind. Baths can help relieve skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema; help ease muscle pain; encourage healthy sleep; and even improve your mood. There are plenty of ways to enhance the experience beyond simple hot water in a tub, too — Epsom salts, essential oils, natural scrubs, masks and other treatments are all excellent, luxuriant add-ins for an indulgent, healing spa experience.
Here’s another way to get more from your bath: this convenient, easy-to-make wooden tray from contractor and designer Brittany Walls’ blog, Pretty Handy Girl.
The tray rests on the edges of the tub to hold soap, drinks, a book or anything else you’d like to use to relax, recharge and enjoy yourself while you have a well-deserved soak.
• 1” x 6” x 3’board
• Measuring tape
• Cotton rope
• Knobs with keyhole opening or handle
• Miter saw
• Wood stain in preferred color
• Oil-based polyurethane
• Drill bits
• Wood glue
• Safety goggles
• 1.5-inch finish nails
• Hammer or nail gun
1. Measure the exterior width of your tub.
2. Cut two small pieces about 1 inch wide from the board (these will be the stops to hold your tray in place). Then cut your board to the width of the outside edges of your tub. Sand the wood smooth.
3. Measure the lip of your tub and mark the location of the inside edges of the tub onto your board.
4. Hold the 1-inch strips under your board and test to see that it fits inside the tub, against the walls, to keep your tray from sliding.
5. Add some wood glue to the underside of the 1-inch strips.
6. Secure the strips to the underside of the board using finish nails. Repeat for the opposite side.
7. Mark the location for your handle, centering it front to back on the tray edges.
8. Using the larger drill bit, drill slightly into the bottom of the tray. Use the smaller drill bit to drill the tray at the same location.
9. Set the handle screws into the bottom of the tray and make sure the screw sits inside the surface of the wood, to prevent it from getting wet and rusting.
10. Stain board by wiping the stain on, letting it sit a minute and wiping off any excess. Repeat until desired color is achieved. Apply two to three coats of polyurethane, following label instructions, to protect your tray from water. Allow the tray to dry.
11. Install the knobs for the handle into the tray. Tie the rope between the two knobs to create the handle. To keep the rope knots secure, add a dab of glue inside the knot. Fray the ends of the rope if you desire.
Blogger, designer, photographer and licensed general contractor Brittany F. Walls writes about DIY projects, including renovations and home décor, on her blog, Pretty Handy Girl.
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