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How to Clean a Tray so that it Stays Presentable for Life?

How to Clean a Tray so that it Stays Presentable for Life?

Is your sleek wooden tray starting to look old and run down? Clean and maintain your tray with these easy tips.

From luxurious wooden coffee trays and quaint bedside trays to ornate cheese trays and useful multi-purpose crates and storage bins, a well-furnished home is incomplete without trays. If you have a habit of picking up knick-knacks during your shopping sprees, having some concrete knowledge about trays can be extremely useful. While it is vital to know how to clean and maintain trays to last you a lifetime, picking the right tray to meet your specific requirements is just as important.

Getting the Ideal Tray

There are so many options available online that you can get confounded in a few minutes of your search. To make life easier, the first thing you must decide on is the purpose of the tray, or what you are likely to use it for:

  • Serving regular beverages and snacks
  • Keeping essentials on your bedside table
  • On your bar counter for serving/keeping drinks and snacks
  • On your kitchen counter for housing condiments
  • Serving classy food and beverages like wine and cheese
  • Keeping your watch, jewellery, perfumes, cufflinks, and cosmetics on the dressing table
  • Organising socks, underwear, and handkerchiefs in your wardrobe
  • Keeping incense, flowers, lamps, and other essentials in your puja room

While you will find a wide range of designer trays made of plastic, melamine, and metal, nothing beats the innate, old-world charm, utility value and durability of a teak wooden tray.

Teak is one of the most opulent wood varieties as far as the designing of household and commercial trays are concerned. It looks all the more elegant when it is hand-crafted and hand-polished. Woodsala has a splendid collection of affordable teak wooden trays available in multiple shapes and sizes. These can be a tasteful and functional addition to your home décor.

Pro Tips for Cleaning and Maintaining Wooden Trays

When you have spent on a high-end wooden tray—or for that matter, any wooden kitchen item such as wooden spoons, bowls, racks, plates, coasters, cutting boards and so on—that spells elegance and grandeur, you must know these pro tips to ensure that these household essentials remain presentable for life.

Here are some pro tips for cleaning and maintaining a wooden tray:

  1. Do not use any harsh cleaning chemicals on wooden trays. Also, do not attempt to wash these in a dishwasher. Wood, especially premium teak wood, requires periodic gentle cleaning, and any untoward attempts will cause minute dents and cracks on the surface that will worsen with time.
  2. The daily cleaning routine is fairly simple. Just use a soft, clean cloth, lukewarm water, and a few drops of mild dishwashing liquid to gently wipe your wooden tray clean. Once done, don’t stash it away in a closet but keep it or hang it in a place where it can get sufficient air to dry. Dampness is detrimental to the longevity of any wood and therefore, wiping it dry before airing is also very important.
  3. For tackling stains and odours, you can use a solution of warm water and vinegar or lemon juice. The strength of this cleaning solution is dependent on the extent of the dirt. If you have a very tough stain, scrub gently with baking soda, and then follow with this solution.
  4. Since wood is porous, it tends to absorb moisture and dry out on the surface. So periodic polishing of the surface is important to retain its original sheen. Without appropriate oiling, even the best wooden trays will fade out and become rough on the surface with time. Always use food-grade oil to polish your wooden tray, and make sure the surface is clean and dry before polishing.
  5. If you have an antique wooden tray with seemingly permanent, etched marks, you can try gently scrubbing the marked area with sandpaper to smoothen out the surface. Always follow it up with the oiling process. The oil should be of good quality, and a thin coating should be left overnight to absorb. You can do it once or twice a month for the best results.

Conclusion

As a homeowner, you could be restricted to a particular budget when it comes to buying home decors and utility items. Being discerning about your choices of trays, racks, crates, and storage bins will ensure that you invest in stuff that is classy, ergonomic, and yet cost-effective. All the more, the right cleaning and maintenance techniques as described above will ensure that trays remain sturdy, as good as new, and presentable for life.