Resin Photo Collage Tray

I was recently commissioned to make a resin tray as a gift for a couple of crazy kids who just got married.

how to make a resin photo collage tray

Wow! Gosh bless em, right?

First, here’s a list of supplies I used to make this tray:

I’ve never made anything quite like this. I’ve made plenty of resin trays with one element in the center, usually a photo, postcard, or sticker. For this, the person who commissioned it wanted to incorporate six of the couples’ favorite photos.

layout for resin collage tray

When I’ve made trays in the past I’ve had a problem where the photo shifts while the resin is curing and I end up with a crooked photo. This is usually when it’s just one photo in the middle of a piece.

To solve this I made a plastic infrastructure in the tray. I started out like I always do, by laminating my photos with self-adhesive laminating sheets. Photos always need to be sealed before they’re put in resin. I figured out my layout and made sure that all the photos fit since the lamination sheets make them larger. I had to clip the corners of the photos that ended up in the corners to fit within the mold.

Then I used my handy dandy packing tape to attach the photos to each other in this configuration.

resin collage tray layout

We wanted to incorporate some dried flowers into the design. I used double sided adhesive dots to keep them from shifting or breaking while getting this whole thing face down in the mold. I ended up cutting the dots into quarters and they were kind of a bitch to work with! But it held them securely.

The bride and groom’s favorite colors are turquoise and black so I made the edge of the tray transparent turquoise. The person who commissioned this has purchased a few of my trays so she already had an idea of the kinds of things I like to make. She asked for glitter like a couple of the other trays she has. I used iridescent glitter and lots of little heart shaped confetti.

I mixed up some turquoise resin with my glitters and poured the edge of the tray first. Then I poured clear resin through the entire face of the tray. I added some more colored resin to where the clear and colored resin meet, making sure there were no gaps. After my bubbles were popped, I set the infrastructure with flowers attached face down in the resin. From there I used a popsicle stick to push out any air bubbles.

diy resin collage tray

I let this cure overnight. The next day I poured the back. To get this white satin texture I marbled together a highly pigmented white resin, a less pigmented white resin, and a little bit of clear resin. Using a clean toothpick I swirled the resin together in a figure 8 patterns. After about 20 minutes while the resin was in a gel-set phase, I repeated this same process.

This is what I ended up with the next day. Before I add my lettering I used a toothpick to open up any larger air bubbles. I’ll fill them in with the next coat of resin we use to seal the lettering.

resin photo collage tray

The last thing I wanted was an errant piece of glitter accidentally blocking someone’s face so I decided to be modest on confetti when I poured the front of the tray.

I like to put little rubber feet on most of my projects that lay flat on a table. It gives them a little grip and makes the finished piece look more polished.

resin photo tray back

And here’s how it turned out! Making things like this in layers is time consuming (this took 3 days) but the finished piece is well worth the effort. The couple loves it!

resin photo collage tray with lettering
resin wedding photo collage tray

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