Best Decorative Trays

Updated

Serving breakfast in bed, having a quiet nosh in front of the telly, or setting up a candlelight dinner for two? Decorative trays make it easy to create a place setting and bring it to the intended person. Even if you are just planning an evening in for yourself, a pretty tray creates a mood of elegance and charm for your personal enjoyment. You don’t have to wait for guests to bring out that special set of china. You deserve the opportunity to enjoy your pretty things without the work of entertainment, as well as the fun of sharing them with others.

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Our Picks

Updated
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Snyder 2 Piece Serving Tray Set

Snyder 2 Piece Serving Tray Set

These two mirrored nesting hexagonal trays are so versatile they can be used anywhere in your home. With multiple trim options, including black, silver, gold, and rose gold, these beautiful trays are an excellent accent piece in your dining room, vanity table, powder room or bar cart. One measures 14” across and the other measures 11” inches enabling them to hold candles, perfumes, bar supplies or a vase of flowers.

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Bishopston Serving Tray

Bishopston Serving Tray

With two rope handles, this handcrafted, rustic 20” x 11.5” wooden tray blends seamlessly with a farmhouse, classic country, rustic, or southwestern aesthetic. Available in natural wood and white finishes, use it on top of a tufted ottoman to hold books, magazines and other accessories or as a stylish breakfast-in-bed tray. Alternatively, place a vase of flowers or candlesticks on it for a dining room table centerpiece.

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Beck Coffee Table Tray

Beck Coffee Table Tray

Versatile and undeniably chic, this polypropylene tray is inspired by contemporary aesthetics. A 2” x 18” sided square, this tray can function as a coffee table accent or a side table snack tray. It’s also perfect for holding guest bathroom towels or soaps. The texture gives off a leather-like vibe, and the contrasting colored handles can easily complement other fixtures in the room, such as lamps. The felt bottom prevents it from sliding around when used as a cocktail tray on a square ottoman.

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Crofton Round Wood Coffee Table Tray

Crofton Round Wood Coffee Table Tray

Place this multifunctional 2” x 16” round wooden tray on your bedside table as a jewelry and technology station, use it in your bathroom as part of an artisanal soap and perfume display, or showcase natural accents in your home, like seashells, pinecones, or sea glass. You can even let it take center stage on your kitchen island as a fruit bowl. This versatile brown wooden bowl is lightly whitewashed for a classic-yet-rustic effect.

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Dublin Silver 4 Piece Coffee Table Tray Set

Dublin Silver 4 Piece Coffee Table Tray Set

Three elegant, silver-and-brown finished 4” resin balls are paired with a matching 15.5” x 6.5” tray to help you complete the look of any contemporary room. An eye-catching textured, raised metallic surface with iridescent, geometric patterns makes this tray the focal point of any space. Adorn an entryway table, dress up a vanity, or add some glamor to your dining room table with this on-trend tray and matching orbs.

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Shelva Mirrored Bottom Glass Keepsake Vanity Tray

Shelva Mirrored Bottom Glass Keepsake Vanity Tray

Ideal for displaying a collection of jewelry, candles, seashells, or stones, this tray features deep glass sides, a mirrored base, and stunning gold-colored trim. Gold ball feet add a touch of personality. At 8” x 6.6” x 1.5” this elegant tray is small enough to fit on a bedside table or on top of a bathroom vanity and makes a beautiful and thoughtful gift.

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Serving Tray

Serving Tray

Bring out this understated serving tray when you’re offering guests lemonade, tea, coffee, or snacks. Available in an assortment of colors, this functional tray blends easily with any décor and given its simple design, it looks fantastic with a rustic table. You can also place it on your outdoor furniture to hold potted plants. It’s made from medium-density fiberboard with a semi-gloss finish and is easy to clean.

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Vanity Tray

Vanity Tray

With an elegant, antiquated feel, this silver-rimmed mirrored tray strikes the perfect balance between shabby chic and timeless class. Display your hand-picked hydrangea bouquets or a charming arrangement of seashells and candles on your coffee table, on a dresser, or your kitchen island in style on this eye-catching rectangular tray with distressed details. The tray comes with hangers so you can hang it on the wall to add character to your guest bathroom.

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Hargrave 2 Piece Vanity Tray Set

Hargrave 2 Piece Vanity Tray Set

This stunning, two-piece tray set evokes the French countryside with its versatility and its cottage aesthetic. Crafted from solid wood and finished with a whitewash, the first tray is 20” x 12” x 3.5”. The smaller tray is 10.5” x 17” x 3”. Use one as a serving tray for lemonade and watermelon on the deck and the other to corral items in your kitchen to prevent clutter.

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Calion Coffee Table Tray

Calion Coffee Table Tray

Use this metal tray to enhance your modern farmhouse aesthetic. Its oval shape, smooth handles, and galvanized zinc finish make it perfect for carrying beverages to guests, presenting appetizers, or displaying potted herbs. Measuring 26¾” x 11⅘” x 4½” this utilitarian tray is a perfect kitchen accessory. It also serves as an excellent storage solution for powder room hand towels or use it on top of a leather ottoman.

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Best Decorative Trays

Buying Guide

Decorative trays are a fabulous way to style an entry hall, ottoman, console, or dressing table. They are functional and aesthetically pleasing, and the best thing about using trays in your home is that, when you tire of it, you can move it to another location to create a whole new look.

To use a decorative tray to its best advantage, consider the material it's made from, which room you'll be using it in, what it will hold, as well as the design. Here is our guide to choosing the right decorative tray for any room in your home.

Trays come in all colors, textures, and materials. The material your tray is made from should reflect its use and the room in which it is used.

  • Ceramic

Ceramic works well in a kitchen or guest bathroom because it is hard to break on tile or hardwood floors and is easy to clean. Decorative ceramic trays often come glazed and painted with ornate designs that can uplift the style and coordinate with the color palette of a room.

  • Glass

Mirrored or glass trays are unsuitable for use in a frequently used bathroom due to fragility of the material and being prone to catching fingerprints. They are more appropriate for a guest bathroom or other seldom-used spaces. A mirrored tray looks impressive in a mirrored bar in a den or entertainment area, where the reflective surfaces amplify the space.

  • Metal

Metallic trays are suitable for any room in the house due to their durability. They need to be cleaned and polished frequently to remove dust and smudges so that they can retain their shine.

Choose flat minimal styles for a modern home and ornate trays with scrollwork or filigree for rooms with a traditional or transitional aesthetic.

Classically designed rooms with dark colors and heavy furnishings can support trays that are more dramatic, like an oversized brass tray, which would overpower a smaller room with a more delicate motíf.

  • Wood

Decorative trays made from wood or woven from natural fibers blend perfectly with modern country or Scandinavian style homes as they complement the clean lines of these styles. These trays also coordinate well with bohemian homes to enhance the wild, eclectic charm of the furniture and textiles used in rooms styled in this fashion.

Decorative trays come in all shapes and sizes. The only requirement that it needs is to be constructed with a flat plane made from sturdy material with raised edges to keep the objects from sliding around. One way to reflect your style in a tray is by picking a unique shape and color.

A rectangular shape is the most traditional shape and offers the clean, minimal lines reflected in most modern homes. Some trays come in round and geometric shapes as well as novelty styles like pineapple or your home state. Choose a shape that fits your accent items without crowding, but one that also reflects your taste and style.

In terms of color, you can use your decorative tray to complement the room's décor or as a unifying element by gathering all the colors of the room in one place. Your tray can also act as an accent piece on its own. Try displaying the tray vertically on the wall or a stand to showcase the design. Or place it in a central location such as the center of a coffee table with minimal accessories to let the piece shine.

The tray's effect will change depending on what objects you place on it. It's fun to play with texture, whether it's through finish, metal, pottery, or fabric. Combine a wooden tray with a Himalayan salt candle holder and an artfully stacked arrangement of books. Or try a metal tray with a glass scented candle and a small potted succulent.

One of the great things about decorative trays is that they can be used in every room in your house, including bathrooms. The room in which you place your tray will often determine what you're putting on it.

  • Entryway: A decorative tray situated in your foyer or entryway is an elegant way to welcome guests to your home and to keep track of essential items like keys or mail. Use different boxes or ceramic bowls on top of your tray to hold your wallet, car keys, and phone all in one place.
  • Bathroom: Especially in a well-appointed guest or half bath, trays are a useful way to organize creams, tissues, and hand towels. Place on the side of a sink or a small table on its own. Organize the bottles of toiletries by size and color.
  • Bar: Trays are incredibly helpful by your bar. You may have a designated alcove that holds all your liquor bottles, glasses, and cocktail accouterments, or you may rely on a bar cart to hold your beverages. Whichever you use, a decorative tray makes an excellent addition. Include bowls of olives, nuts, and martini stirrers in unusual holders and glasses to create a unique visual effect.
  • Kitchen: Trays are a boon to the busiest room in the house, and they don't need to be merely functional. Use a decorative tray on a kitchen island to hold enticing nibbles for your guests, or use it as a moveable chef's helper, with embroidered dishtowels and cooking utensils.
  • Anywhere: Trays are an accessible, adaptable piece of your décor. If you have a lot of decorations - ceramic boxes, shells, old keys, or other kinds of eye-pleasing collectibles - place them in bowls in a lacquered ceramic tray to display.

  • Try not to jam a ton of things on to your decorative tray. Too many objects, no matter how aesthetically pleasing they are, will become a jumble to the eye. Stuffing your tray full of objects also makes it more susceptible to damage.
  • Costs for decorative trays can run from the thousands for a sterling silver tray to a few dollars for an acrylic tray. Keep in mind what you plan on using the tray for as well as its material. If it's going into an art room, choose a tray that isn't too precious. If you're displaying it on the mantle, look for something that reflects luxury and sumptuousness.
  • If you would like a versatile tray, opt for ones in neutral tones and traditional shapes. To liven things up, however, especially in minimalist or modern styles, choose vibrant colors or surprising shapes.