Product Feature – 7gypsies Trays & Shadowboxes

Trays have been a part of the 7gypsies collection for a very long time. In fact, the 7gypsies tray was the first to market.  These vintage reproductions were introduced in a variety of shapes and sizes – staying with the look and feel of the original vintage find, but making a few minor adjustments to make them perfect for the needs of artists, paper crafters and scrapbookers.  Today the trays expand their versatility as they are used by mixed media artists, DIY’ers and crafters for an even wider range of use.

These trays are made from wood and either hand painted or stained to give them an authentic look.  While we would love to say they are made in the USA, they are custom made for us overseas.  Today there are many different trays on the market at all different prices and quality, but the original is a 7gypsies tray and the quality and workmanship is still top priority.

We thought we would share some unique ways we have used the trays and get your creative juices flowing.

Save the Corks – if keeping a wine log is not your thing, why not put the corks from your favorite wines in a tray for all to see?  Most corks feature the name of the vineyard, the wine and sometimes the year.  You can add the details too, if you wish, by writing onto the cork or push pin a tiny note.  We love this vintage corkscrew in the middle – what fun way to show it off and keep track of your favorite wines at the same time.  This Wine Board was made with the Photo Shadow Box Tray.  No need to add photos, but there is a spot for a few 4×6 and  a 5×7 photo, maybe some wine country photos!!!  This tray was made with the Vino and Ale Collection.  Make it about the wine or save the bottle tops or labels of your favorite brews.

wine trayOn the Table –  organizing silverware and napkins for holidays, dinner parties or tastings is always a challenge. The 8×8 Stained Shadow Box is a great place to start.  Add a knob (we painted this found knob with Tattered Angels High Impact Paint and it looks shiny and new) and turn this Shadowbox into a faux drawer.  Fill with painted recycled tin can and add silverware, fill Canvas Corp Burlap Cutlery Holders and stack them up or make your own holder by sewing printed canvas with 3 channels and fill them with a fork, knife and spoon.  No matter casual or more formal, this DIY Silverware holder is a perfect use for this tray and looks amazing.


Photos are Art – utilize the tray to show off family photos, vintage photos or themed photos that match the decor of your room.  Add a simple touch of paper and/or fabric to finish it off.  While traditional mixed media and paper crafter projects fill trays with as many exciting little pieces as possible, a more trendy approach is less is more. Focus on one color story, one type of photo or a simple theme to create your vision.  A tray like this can be included in your photo wall, added to a book shelf or placed on a easel and becomes part of the room decor.  This tray features items from 7gypsies American Vintage Collection.


Show off a Collection – Lucy, at Craftberry Bush, shares a great way to show off special shells collected at the beach – a perfect way to remember a great trip or terrific DIY decor for a beach house or nautical themed space.  7gypsies Solo trays are available in white, black and a vintage stain and have one 4×6 opening and 3 just under 2″x2″ boxes that are longing to hold what you love to collect or want to show off.  You can fill the species with background paper, paint them a fun color or leave as they are. Keeping the composition simple lets the objects you are showing off stand out perfectly.  024Share Your Vintage Finds – if you are a collector of all that is vintage, save everything your grandfather had in the garage or buy every vintage miniature you can get your hands on, this next tray by Rhea Freitag will get you very excited.  The 7gypsies Letterblock Trays come in 2 colors – black and vintage stain – and are filled with wonderful nooks and crannies that are longing to house your special finds.  Leave the tray as is or paint it with a Tattered Angles Naturally Aged Kit, High Impact Paint or Decor & DIY Paint to get the color, look and feel you are going for.  You can add vintage papers for the background and simply fill each box with one or more little pieces – the end result is just fabulous. To view this project, click here.


Chronicle Your Journeys – trays are a great way to share and show off the little ephemera , photos, tickets, dates, brochure, etc. you collect along the way – the same letterblock tray looks completely different with a travel theme.  Then you can add extras like keys, metal frames, gears and more.  7gypsies offers a wide range of metals that help give some fun personality to your tray.  This is a great gift to make for returning honeymooners, to remember a special anniversary trip, or to remember once in a lifetime bucket list trip.

Tray-1A Little Something Special – a handmade card is an amazing gift and one that will bring on a smile for sure, so why not use those same skills to create a special little tray that says just what you want it to say?  This gift-able tray measures just 6″x6″ and is perfect for sitting on a desk, next to the bed or on a shelf to be looked at for years to come.

Sunshine Tray

Make it 3D – filling a tray with lots of goodies is fun, but turning the tray on its side and making it 3d gives you many great spaces to add lots of creative little touches.  The shadow boxes have inserts that are available to match and they look great inside the shadowbox or right on top.

Shadowbox Art

Make a Memo Board – trays are great when they look cute, but even better when they are functional, help you stay organized and still look amazing.  This Shadowbox Tray is a great blank tray to make a memo board on.  Fill the spaces with papers, note pads, Chalkstock, photos, recipe cards and more.  To make the little push pin board, simply wrap any of the printed  fabric panels around foam or cardboard and glue into place – you have an instant board that will hold your items in place with pushpins, using the fabric ensures that the holes don’t show as they would with paper.  These are great with a garden or kitchen theme like this one that features the Farmhouse Kitchen and The Watering Can Collections. You can even make one for the holidays or a vintage version with 7gypsies papers.  

Say Something – there are so many fun sayings out there these days that you see prinred on scrapbooking paper, written on pinterest, posted on instagram and on blogs. You save them, cut them out and print them, but what do you do with them? Well here is a great idea on how to capture them in a fun tray. This garden inspired tray with the Canvas Corp Collection uses the Watering Can with fun sayings about the garden, flowers, plans and dirt to create something fun and inspiring.  You can take any theme and blend it with your favorite sayings and create a special tray for you or make the perfect gift.file

To checkout Amber’s blog post on this tray click here.

Get Organized – trays are a great DIY project you can fix up to organize jewelry, craft supplies, sewing supplies or even little gadgets in the kitchen.  Paint the tray to match the room, “line” it with our favorite printed paper and fix it up.  We love how Irit uses the 7gypsies Bottles to hold her earrings – so clever.  Shop the entire Canvas Corp Brands collection for clips, ropes, trays, bottles, bags and more that will help get you organized.

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Check out Irit post where she shows in detail how she made this cut tray here.

Show off School Photos – change them out each year – unlike photo frames where you can only drop one photo in at a time, 7gypsies trays and shadow boxes give you extra room to add papers, embellishments and plenty of places to show off your photos.  We love the idea of making a tray that is sized just right for small and wallet size photos that you can update each year – or you can even make a new one for each year.  Such great memories.

Varsity Charm ModelMake an Advent or Countdown to Christmas Calendar – this is so simple when you start with one of the 7gypsies trays.  Countdown 10 days, 12 days, 24 days or all 31 days – you choose how you make your calendar.  You can stamp, print, cut out the numbers and make little boxes with nooks and crannies to tuck in family activities, treats, things to be thankful for or fun stuff.  Make it your way.  Here is fun new collection for Canvas Corp that would be perfect for this countdown – Jolly Christmas 

Countdown to Christmas Calendar Collage II

Faux Finish Shadowbox – most of the shadowboxes come in black, white or stained, well here we show you that you can make them any color or faux finish you want.  This 12×12 shadowbox was painted with the Tattered Angles Naturally Aged Kit Rusty Metal.  There are so many great finishes to choose from and then you can get organized, show off photos, put your collection in – oh so many options.  This shadowbox shows off the Boots ‘n Saddle Collection and is perfect for a teenage room or on the shelf in the family room to show off some personality.

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These are just a handful of the 7gypsies trays that are available, so we thought we would share a few more. Each one inspires us to do something DIY, something to get organized and something to just look cute.


These vintage receipt holders are great for holding photos, recipes, fabric swatches in a studio, business cards, wallet photos, check lists, menus and more.


These simple wooden easels are great for setting your trays up on mantels, book shelves or desks they are light weight and hold all of our trays.12604-shadowbx-lttrpress-wood-brass_medium

This Shadow Box Tray has a special 7gypsies handle and is one of our bigger trays, holding lots of goodies.   


We have to mention the newest to the tray and shadowbox family – the new 7gypsies crates. Many of the same ideas, but just all tucked in. We will share more crate ideas in a future blog.


Canvas Corp Brands is the home of Tattered Angels, 7Gypsies and Canvas Corp (Canvas Home Basics). We are a manufacturer of surfaces, paint and vintage reproductions coming to you from Springdale, Arkansas.

This blog is a compilation of inspiration from the Canvas Corp Brands family including Canvas Corp, Tattered Angels and 7Gypsies.