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Wooden Trays

Trays, or shallow platforms used to transport and hold objects, are made of many different materials, including gold, silver, bronze, sheet iron, and wood. Ranging from luxury options to disposable, one-use versions, trays serve a wide variety of purposes depending on the social context.

In Japan, wooden trays have been used for centuries as serving platters for snacks, such as sliced fruit and tea. They are often made of keyaki, a valuable type of tree used extensively in Japanese woodworking, with the platter and handles carved from the same piece of wood. Also used frequently in Japan are small Shinto altars called kamidana, or “god shelves,” which consist of a wooden tray filled with sprigs of pine, food offerings, sake, candles, and talismans of local gods.

Today, many people use metal and plastic trays because they are mass-produced, affordable, and easy to clean. However, collectors of wooden objects prefer the individuality, craftsmanship, and exquisite detail of wooden trays and purchase antique and modern pieces to accentuate their homes.


Quick Facts

  • On October 6, 2015, Bonham’s London sold a mother-of-pearl and black lacquer overlaid wood tray made in northern India during the 18th century for $1,470,000
  • On June 3, 2015, Christie’s Hong Kong sold an imperial polychrome lacquer quatrefoil tray made during Emperor Jiajin’s rule (1522-1566) for $595,792

Recommended Items at Auction

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ENGLISH OAK BUTLERS TRAY
Jun 29, 11:00 AM EDT
ENGLISH OAK BUTLERS TRAY
by Thomaston Place Auction Galleries
Est: $250- $350
$1251 Bid
Edwardian Mahogany Butler Tray on Stand, ca. 1910
Jun 18, 11:00 AM EDT
Edwardian Mahogany Butler Tray on Stand, ca. 1910
by Auctions at Showplace
Est: $200- $400
$1001 Bid
MCM Exotic Wood Tray & Bowls
Jun 14, 9:00 AM EDT
MCM Exotic Wood Tray & Bowls
by Keystone Auctions LLC
Est: $50- $150
$251 Bid
A Mahogany Dropside Tray Mobile
Jun 16, 11:00 AM AEST
A Mahogany Dropside Tray Mobile
by Theodore Bruce Auctioneers & Valuers
Est: AUD60- AUD120
AUD301 Bid
Early 20th century carved cedar & maple tray, with koalas and kookaburra (36 x 50 cm)
Jun 23, 5:00 PM AEST
Early 20th century carved cedar & maple tray, with koalas and kookaburra (36 x 50 cm)
by Lawsons
Est: AUD100- AUD150
AUD151 Bid
1960s Teak serving platter 32.5 x 35 
Jun 25, 7:00 PM AEST
1960s Teak serving platter 32.5 x 35 
by Lawsons
Est: AUD100- AUD150
AUD151 Bid
Fold out tray, 1950s, winner of Good Housekeeping Award 1956, 62 x 40 x 22
Jun 25, 7:00 PM AEST
Fold out tray, 1950s, winner of Good Housekeeping Award 1956, 62 x 40 x 22
by Lawsons
Est: AUD180- AUD240
AUD151 Bid
Tray, England, Edwardian, mahogany with decorative inlays, handles on the sides, Butlers Tray, 66 x 43 cm
Jun 15, 12:00 PM CEST
Tray, England, Edwardian, mahogany with decorative inlays, handles on the sides, Butlers Tray, 66 x 43 cm
by Auktionshaus Plückbaum
Est: €0- €0
€800 Bids
TRAY, C. 1900, MAHOGANY (?), BASE PLA
Jun 22, 10:00 AM CEST
TRAY, C. 1900, MAHOGANY (?), BASE PLA
by Historia Auctionata
Est: €0- €0
€400 Bids
vintage Folk Art hand painted serving tray
Jun 17, 10:00 AM EDT
vintage Folk Art hand painted serving tray
by Yardley Antiques
Est: $60- $75
$200 Bids
A French Beech baguette tray, 98cm x 11cm, antique half gallon and larger
Jun 20, 10:30 AM BST
A French Beech baguette tray, 98cm x 11cm, antique half gallon and larger
by Bamfords Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd
Est: £70- £100
£350 Bids
Rolling pin, and work carrier tray
Jun 22, 11:00 AM EDT
Rolling pin, and work carrier tray
by Willis Henry Auctions Inc.
Est: $400- $600
$2000 Bids
vintage Folk Art animal tray
Jun 17, 10:00 AM EDT
vintage Folk Art animal tray
by Yardley Antiques
Est: $100- $125
$500 Bids
A 19th century oak and mahogany oval serving tray, oak base, mahogany galle
Jun 20, 10:30 AM BST
A 19th century oak and mahogany oval serving tray, oak base, mahogany galle
by Bamfords Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd
Est: £40- £60
£200 Bids
Lot of 3 Carved Wooden Plates/Trays
Jul 10, 11:00 AM EDT
Lot of 3 Carved Wooden Plates/Trays
by Bodnar's Auction Sales
Est: $50- $100
$100 Bids
Two New Zealand Ancient Kauri Wood Trays
Jun 27, 10:00 AM EDT
Two New Zealand Ancient Kauri Wood Trays
by Everard Auctions and Appraisals
Est: $80- $120
$500 Bids
A 19th Century Scratch Carved Fruitwood Spouted Drip Tray, possibly Scandinavian and a 19th Century
Jun 15, 11:00 AM BST
A 19th Century Scratch Carved Fruitwood Spouted Drip Tray, possibly Scandinavian and a 19th Century
by Wilkinson's Auctioneers
Est: £100- £200
£600 Bids
Een butlertray, Engeland 19e eeuw
Jun 18, 6:00 PM CEST
Een butlertray, Engeland 19e eeuw
by Veilinghuis Onder de Boompjes
Est: €100- €150
€1000 Bids
A 19thC yew wood tray of rectangular form with sha…
Jun 24, 9:00 AM BST
A 19thC yew wood tray of rectangular form with sha…
by Claydon Auctioneers
Est: £50- £80
£500 Bids
A late 19th / early 20thC mahogany tray of octagon…
Jun 24, 9:00 AM BST
A late 19th / early 20thC mahogany tray of octagon…
by Claydon Auctioneers
Est: £30- £40
£300 Bids
GOOD LUCK SWASTIKA SOUVENIRS
Jun 23, 12:00 PM EDT
GOOD LUCK SWASTIKA SOUVENIRS
by Omnia Auctions
Est: $30- $60
$200 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Wooden Trays


Bamfords Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd

Bamfords Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd

Lawsons

Lawsons

Art International Auction House

Art International Auction House

Cheffins

Cheffins