Create your own ANTIQUE TEA TRAY

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Create Your Own Antique Tea Tray with one or two trips to a Thrift Shop, a bit of Imagination and some Spray Painting.

Looking through Pinterest you come across some amazing Home Made Coffee Bars and for some time I had a Mini Coffee Bar with a Pod Machine set up on the the corner of my Kitchen Bench.

It looked really good however it was pointless as we are a family of Tea Drinkers. We never used the Pod Machine  but when it came to Tea, there is always a pot  Brewing in the house. Whether it be your good old English Breakfast, a sweet blend of Lamington, Strawberry & Creams or a calming leaf of chamomile There is always a Teapot full.

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COFFEE BAR  A TEA DRINKER’S TREASURE- There is nothing better for a Tea Drinker than drinking Freshly Brewed Tea from a Delicate China Cup

So I removed the Pod Machine, looked through my hoard of Thrift Shop Purchased fine China. Visited the Thrift Shop to purchase a couple of the 80’s Fashionable Timber Cup Trees and a large serving Tray.

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Garage Sale Purchased Antique China Cups Resting on a Shabby Chic Version of the Popular 1980’s Timber Tree Cup Holder

Using an All purpose Spray Paint which has the Primer included and adheres to any surface. I Firstly Painted The Taller Cup Tree and Timber Tray in white. I the Distressed Both to give them a Shabby Chic Look. I then used Bees Wax to Seal Them.

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Give an old Thrift Store Bought Tray a Spray of Paint add a Doilie and Fine China and your ready to serve HIGH TEA

I was lucky to have found 2 Tree Cup Holders on my Thrift Shop visit. So I then Sprayed the other one a Minty Green colour also distressing for a Shabby Chic Look. On this Holder I placed my Johnson Brothers Coffee Cups from my Dinner set. The colours matched in perfect with my handmade Coffee sign I had previously made from an old frame and my Tin set which I had purchased on sale from a Department Store for $5 a piece.

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An Old wooden Frame- Spray Paint- Sand Paper- Computer-Printer-Paper & 30 minutes of your Time, To make yourself your very own sign


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One of the only items I have purchased new, However I did not pay retail a bargain @ $5 each

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With some imagination and a trip to a thrift shop or some garage sales, you can change your Kitchen decor’ in a day for under $30 with High End Products 

The Biscuit Jar was also a Fantastic Thrift Shop Purchase for $5 and the cute little China cups were 50cents each. I have an entire wardrobe full of pre-loved linen and doilies and as Shabby Chic is my number One Decor’ Style I use them all the Time.

I keep all my Tea strainers in a Parfait Ceramic Jar which I paid $1 for. The Tea strainers I purchase from eBay all little cute ones (very cheap) The  Measurement Conversion sign I have had for years and as you can see I used it regularly.

The Antique Cups were a bargain for a $1.50 each from a Garage Sale and the Tea Pot was from the same Garage Sale for $4.oo.

If you enjoy creating new out of old such as I do and would like to share your projects I have a Pinterest Board that promotes such things. I also have a Pinterest Board for Diy Bloggers. Beginners are welcome to both. You are also able to sell your creations on both.

If you are interested in becoming a collaborated the rules are simple -Follow me on Pinterest and Follow my Blog. Contact me with your Pinterest Details

Thank you For Reading Happy DIY




10 OP/THRIFT SHOP ITEMS can transform your Bedroom into a Shabby Chic Sanctuary.

A New Bed, New Sheets & Pillows everything else are Op-Shop Purchases

THE AMOUNT OF MONEY YOU SAVE THROUGH OP- SHOP DECORATING, BOARDERS ON THE UNBELIEVABLE, This post is my way of showing you that not only is it believable, it is fun and rewarding with positive, achievable outcomes to suit even the tightest of budget.

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I am a self confessed Op- Shop-a-holic. (“Thrift Shopping”to those from the United States & UK) I am completely addicted to buying pre-loved and am completely addicted to the styles and trends of yesteryear, choosing an eclectic style of decor from different era’s. Excited knowing that the likelihood of my decor choice being mass produced and on display amoungst my neighbours homes is zero. The inquisitive questions and compliments I receive from visitors really does make me feel good( Happy Like a Child playing -good feeling-) especially when given the opportunity to tell them the story of where and how the item came to be a part of my home and in return the show of  genuine interest shown on their faces about my story.

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Decorating my home with pre-loved  Furnishings and Decor allows me to achieve the look and style I want and sometimes for up to a 10th of the price it would of cost a shopper purchasing retail.

Yes it’s true that sometimes it may take me longer to find the perfect cupboard or cushion covers and yes I may then have to get my hands dirty and repaint the cupboard to the exact colour I want, but the challenge of rummaging through op shops, venturing out to Flea Markets & garage sales and scrolling through Face Book Buy & Swap Groups is half the fun and flipping an old cupboard with a coat of paint (with the help of my sons) or decorating an Old Lamp Shade following a tutorial from Pinterest is the other half.

Shabby Chic is one of my all time favourite styling looks and I knew It was the must have look  for my bedroom.  My kids removed all my furniture, that was my entire 4 piece country mahogany timber suite (left over from my marriage which ended 10 years ago, so it was very much passed it’s used by date in more ways than one) and I made 3 new Retail Purchases – A new Bed -New Pillows – New Sheets. Below are the list of  pre-loved items I purchased for my bedroom transformation, which are also my 10 op-shop/thrift shop purchase suggestions for your very own Shabby Chic Sanctuary. 


1. A pair of antique lamps and lampshades.  Op shops have all their electrical’s tested prior to sale. I repainted and distressed the lamps. The lampshades were perfect as is. The pair cost me $25 as the store was having a half price sale.


2. FURNITURE- antique furniture lasts the distance. My 2 bed side chest of drawers were originally a dressing table purchased for $60 I cut out the middle, added the embellishments to the front which I bought off eBay for under $20, painted and distressed. My dressing table cost $50 and received a new coat of paint and some fine distressing to match in with my Bedside Tables.


3. DOILIES, you can never have to many. The finer details and layers you add to your decorating is what’s so beautifully unique about shabby chic. You can even go as far as using the larger table cloths as bedspreads or embellish a few cushion with smaller ones if you are craft minded. Pinterest has so many decor ideas for doilies from wall art to making fairy lights and all of these could be beautifully incorporated into your Shabby Chic Sanctuary.

4. A MIRROR, I was fortunate to pick this one up for $30 my dad accidentally dropped it when we were painting. We laughed no broken glass so the cracks of the edging stayed. A white cane mirror would work just as lovely. Wooden mirrors work as well you could easily add your own embellishments of lace, burlap and flowers.

5. MANCHESTER– some people cringe at the thought of buying a quilt cover or pillow cases from the op shops but remember even when staying at the Hilton someone else has slept in those sheets and you can buy some beautiful pillow cases for as little as 50c. Not to mention you can purchase some absolutely exquisite cushion covers for between $1 & $5 such as the lace brocade feature cushion displayed in these photos. Purchased with the insert for $3 ( I actually felt guilty only paying $3 for this once very expensive designer cushion). Curtains can also be a very effective room enhancers with this beautiful curtain, it’s pretty cut-out lace feature in perfect condition for $8. Keep an eye out for my upcoming post dedicated to “Thrift Shop Bed Styling”

6. ARTWORK- I love artwork on walls, it adds so much character to a space. For me it is a decor piece that really transform a house into a home. In a small Charity Shop in the middle of no where I came across these 3 “R Hendricks” framed pieces from his Bathtub Collection. At the time I had no idea of the artist or value of his works. The cost for all 3 pieces was $60. To me that’s  a lot of money however I fell in love with them and bought them immediately ( this very moment on eBay the cost to purchase R. Hendricks 3 Piece framed bathtub collection starts at $99 US) I really did outdo myself with this profitable purchase and they are the perfect Backdrop for my Shabby Chic Bedroom. I have been fortunate through my op shop travels to have purchased 2 more R. Hendricks Framed Pieces for even cheaper. These framed artworks with the addition of some cheaper floral pieces that I bought online for $5 each have given a nice balanced to the grey with a hint of magenta walls with the combination of colour and sepia enhancing the eclectic style that forms the basis of shabby chic.

7. VASES & FLOWERS – To be honest the amount of vases I own is more than I will ever need but it is truly impossibly for me to enter a charity shop without purchasing a vase if it is antique and priced under $3. Vases are the perfect decor item for anyone designing a Shabby Chic Finished Room. Remembering that with the quality of spray paints available today even if it is not your preferred coloured you can change it. In regards to choosing the flowers there are literally thousands of inexpensive yet brilliant looking flowers available to purchase through eBay. Check out my ” I BUY SILK FLOWERS FOR LESS THAN $5 with FREE POSTAGE. They also make terrific gifts for Teachers, Secret Santa, Work Collegues and House Warmings.

8. CANDLES & CANDLE STICK HOLDERS-  Candles obviously serve 2 purposes not only can you buy some that smell amazing, you can also buy some that look amazing. Adding a wonderful scent to your Shabby Chic Sanctuary for me is an absolute must and watching the burning flicker of the flame at night whilst relaxing in bed is such a comforting feeling. When it comes to Candle Holders I create my own using material sourced for thrift shops- From old lamps, wine glasses to china plates at a fraction of the cost if I were to buy new in a store. Check out my tutorials on how to make your own thrifty Candle  Holders- “DIY ROSE PETAL CANDLE HOLDERS & TURN YOUR CHEESE & WINE DISPLAY INTO CANDLE HOLDERS. I will soon be adding another tutorial on how to make  these beautiful wooden/china plate candle holders photographed below so keep an eye out for the post here or on my Pinterest Page ( JUDITH SUDULIC )

9. CRYSTAL & CUT GLASS- It amazes me how inexpensive diamond cut glass and overlooked crystal pieces cost at thrift shops in Australia. I am unsure the cost overseas however here perfect pieces are as little as $2 and there is so much to choose from. I keep my jewellery in them, my hair clips in them, so many things and they look very pretty. Remembering that you can also enhance the glass with paint, lace & handmade flowers. I have a tutorial ” DIY SHABBY CHIC DRESSER SET’ you may wished to look at or for more ideas on how to use these inexpensive cut glass pieces there is also my post “Bathroom Decor on a Budget”

10. TRINKETS – Trinkets are a personal touch of collected items that are unique to your style, maybe they are an assortment of gifts you have received or purchases from overseas travels or crafts you have made for yourself. The lattice heart on my wall is craft project I completed myself. The Trinket boxes are purchases from thrift shops that I fell in love with. The Bird Cage Jewellery Stand was a gift from my children and the crystal pieces and fairy were my mothers before she passed away. Not a necessity however when thrifting for your Shabby Chic Sanctuary there will be items that speak to you and you will have the perfect place for them to sit. Maybe some old photo frames, Ornaments, Vintage Hats, Ginger Jars.

Your Shabby Chic Sanctuary is your Special Space & I hope my 10 OP/Thrift Shop Purchase Suggestions allow you to achieve Your Perfect Bedroom on a Budget as I was.

I would love to see your Shabby Chic Sanctuary’s. I would also like to share them with my Pinterest Followers. If you would be interested in sharing please either leave your comments below or contact me


The Op Shops in my area tend to accumulate a lot of Wine Carafes and most times I can pick them up for as cheap as between 50c to $1  and I almost never leave  to come home from a day of op/thrift shopping without purchasing a couple of  Fine China Saucers or bread & Butter plates.

These two item will form the structure of your candle stick holder. To adhere them together I use a very strong glue “E6000” it’s clear and paintable and available for purchase on eBay. I only use  Spray Paint Brands Rustoleum or Krylon which are self primers and are made to cover most surfaces.

Not only did I purchase the plates and carafes from op shops I also bought most of the embellishments used to decorate my project from the op shop as well.

Step One- Clean and dry items thouroughly and spray paint carafe. Once dry use a light sand paper to distress if that is a look you like.

Step Two- Place doileys, pieces of lace or coloured papers on your carafe using decoupage techniques. (for larger pieces I used modge podge with a coat of glue underneath to adhere and another coat over the top to hold in place)

Step Three- Once the larger pieces of material are completely dry glue your smaller embellishments with a hot glue gun. Handmade Shabby Chic Flowers made from old clothes (there are plenty of tutorials on Pinterest) , Diamontes purchased at Bargain prices  from eBay.

Step Four- Secure your plate with glue and allow to rest for a couple of days before you stand your candles on them.

Australian Readers you can purchase the most amazingly scented inexspensive candles from one of my closest friends. You will be shocked out how cheap her prices are for such high quality products. “Candles by Lisa – Sydney”was my inspiritaion for this project.

If any of you ladies would love to share your completed project I would be thrilled to see your photos. I am also looking for Collaborators for my Group Board ” Pinterest inspired Projects” if any of you would be interested in becoming a contributor and sharing your DIY and Craft Projects you can send me an email with you Pinterest information @

Thank you for Reading