DIY / Home / Studio

DIY // In The Clear Oil Finish Butler Tray

08.26.16 By //
The Design Confidential x AVE Home // DIY In The Clear Oil Finish Butler Tray

For my third and final installment with the AVE Raw line from Ave Home, I really wanted to celebrate the beauty of the piece by leaving it in all it’s Raw and beautiful glory. But… let’s be real – I have two boys, dogs, a husband and a couple of frogs and all of them specialize in making messes and breaking things. Some sort of protective finish was a must, but many layers of wax and buffing or a true oil finish that would alter the color of the wood or give it an unnatural shine were quite the opposite of what I had in mind.

I am over the moon excited to share this project with you fine folks, because it is truly the first and only finish I have ever done that was actually clear and didn’t alter the original look of the wood at all. No added sheen or shine, no hours of labor intensive applications of varnish or wax. Just pure and simple – a gorgeous oil based finish in the convenience of a spray.

The Design Confidential x AVE Home // DIY In The Clear Oil Finish Butler Tray

Let’s talk about the piece for a minute, shall we? This fine piece of work is the Audrey Butler Tray + Brass Stand and it could be the poster child for all the beautiful things. It is much larger than I imagined it would be, which opens it up for more amazing uses that I hadn’t even thought to use it for. I have been slowly attempting to add lighter tones of wood throughout my family room and kitchen area so this piece is now replacing a darker vintage piece I formerly had in this spot. It is a far better height and width and the brass stand is mighty handsome too, giving it just a bit of that something extra. It is perfect and it arrived in a perfect state with absolutely no need to sand or condition it prior to finishing.

Wholesale online orders will be open through the end of the month, and beginning September 1st, you will be able to order the pieces in the Raw line through your local dealer. Of course if you don’t have a dealer near you, you can contact the lovely folks at Ave Home for a special order!

The Design Confidential x AVE Home // DIY In The Clear Oil Finish Butler Tray

An oil finish is timeless and durable. Most of the time an oil finish demands much more of you than this particular product did and all that beauty often comes at a price if altering the color is not your goal. An oil will soak down into the pores of the wood and will provide a marvelous water resistance and protective durability. This good looking oil I used here, could not be easier if it tried. I used a spray water proofing product that is clear and gave this piece two light coats and done. There really wasn’t much else to it.

The Design Confidential x AVE Home // DIY In The Clear Oil Finish Butler Tray

The most difficult part of the application is that you actually need to spray a light coat. I hope that you can see above just how lightly this can be sprayed. If you are like me, this is the hardest thing ever because my perfectionist nature wants to have each and every coat have perfect coverage. Luckily it won’t be the end of the world if you accidentally spray more on than you should have. It will pool and it may even drip or run, but it matters not, just use a brush or a smooth cloth rag and wipe away excess. Let it cure and dry for at least 24 hours before you bring your furniture inside and be sure to wear a respirator and eye protection. This is a product that should be applied outside, just be sure to protect your plants.


The Design Confidential x AVE Home // DIY In The Clear Oil Finish Butler Tray

Once you have addressed any excess and allowed for the finish to dry, you won’t be able to tell you applied anything at all except that your wood will be happy and water will bead if it is spilled on the surface.

The Design Confidential x AVE Home // DIY In The Clear Oil Finish Butler Tray

The finish and this piece are truly dreamy and a clear oil based finish was perfect way to show off the natural beauty of this butler tray and the craftsmanship that went into it. It lives on a little wall that is a straight shot down a long hallway and can be seen almost instantly when you enter my home. It was an honor to put my mark on it and I love seeing this little vignette every time I walk in the front door.

This project was created in partnership with Ave Home. All crazy talk and opinions are 100% my own.

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