How to control countertop clutter

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

I don't know about you, but we get a TON of mail. We of course get the usual bills and personal mail, but we also get some mail for the previous owners. Also, when you buy a house, your name is given to tons of local companies, so we get tons of "Hey, new neighbor! Call us today for your free estimate!" mail for siding, doors, windows, yard work, pest control, you name it. Then we get tons more ads and coupons for tons of businesses. You know, the ones that just say "Current Resident" instead of your name. And of course there are the credit card offers. Ugh. Thanks, but no thanks! Too much mail!!!

We tend to walk in the door with a handful of mail and place it on the counter. So, all of those unnecessary papers lead to our countertop looking like this most days....

How to control countertop clutter | Meet the B's

We needed a solution. Desperately.

So I decided to make a cute little tray to keep on the counter. When we bring the mail in, we'll immediately throw away, shred, or recycle any mail we don't need (ads, coupons, credit card offers, catalogues, etc. The rest of it, instead of sitting in a giant pile on the counter, will go into the tray. At least then it won't look so sloppy! I'm also going to look into how to stop the junk mail. (Let me know if you have any tips!)

DIY Painted Mail Tray | Meet the B's

Here's how I made the tray...

I painted an unfinished wooden tray (which you can buy at any craft store) with black paint. You could also use a previously painted or stained tray if you have one. You'll just need to sand it first.

DIY Painted Mail Tray | Meet the B's

Then I printed out the word "MAIL" in the font I wanted to use. I was too scared to free hand on such a small surface area. With nowhere to rest my hand, I would definitely not have a steady hand! I ended up using "Sketch Serif" from dafont.com. I did end up changing the font a bit by not filling in all the tiny little lines, but only because my paint pen is too thick for those lines.

DIY Painted Mail Tray | Meet the B's

In my last chalkboard project, I transferred the print using chalk, but its such a messy process I decided to try a different transfer technique. I used pencil!

Transfer Technique | Meet the B's

I covered the back of the paper with pencil. Then, I centered the paper on the side of my tray and traced over the letters with the pencil. Press down hard with the pencil so that the lead on the back of 
the paper will transfer to your project. 

Transfer Technique | Meet the B's

Yay! Much less messy than chalk! 

DIY Painted Mail Tray | Meet the B's

Then I traced the pencil markings with my white paint pen. I love paint pens so much.

DIY Painted Mail Tray | Meet the B's

And voila! My very un-sloppy countertop!!!

DIY Painted Mail Tray | Meet the B's

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11 comments :

  1. In the Netherlands you can get special stickers at the post office tot say no to mail without an adress. And that saves soooooo much clutter

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    1. That's wonderful! I'll have to search to see if they do something similar here! That would be so awesome!!!

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  2. Such a Good idea! I will definitively have to copy this for our Counter!

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    1. It really helps! It might not be an organized pile of mail, but at least it looks soooo much neater!!!!

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  3. Our neighbor taught me a trick about junk mail. If it has a prepaid envelope, you put all the paperwork in prepaid envelope. Mark X across your name and address and write in black marker Take me off your list, not interested. Also mark through name on any credit card apps and big xxxxx thru paperwork, rip page in half. That way someone else can't try to get a credit card in your name. Seal envelope and mail it back to them. They have to pay postage and do it each time til they stop. Catalogs....take out order forms that have your name on them and rip up even if you're recycling. Keeps theives from ordering in your name as well

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    1. That's a great tip! Thank you so much for sharing!!!

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  4. Great idea Nicole, love the tray. I do what Becky does with our junk mail. It doesn't stop it all, but it certainly helps.
    Kristi

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    1. Thanks, Kristi! I guess I need to give Kristi's tip a try! Anything to stop the massive amounts of junk mail!

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  5. This looks great! I would love it if you joined and contribute your awesome posts at my link party at City of Creative Dreams on Fridays :D Hope to see you there at City of Creative Dreams Link Party

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