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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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TWO CUTLERY TRAYS 19th/20th Century
Oct 06, 9:30 AM EDT
TWO CUTLERY TRAYS 19th/20th Century
by Eldred's
Est: $250- $350
$2506 Bids
French Black Forest relief carved tray
Oct 08, 10:00 AM EDT
French Black Forest relief carved tray
by King Galleries
Est: $250- $400
$1752 Bids
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DAVID COOK (20th c.) Decorated tray (Napi's), 1984, Painted wood
Oct 08, 1:00 PM EDT
DAVID COOK (20th c.) Decorated tray (Napi's), 1984, Painted wood
by Bakker Auctions
Est: $200- $400
$1502 Bids
Apple Tray
Oct 22, 10:00 AM EDT
Apple Tray
by New England Auctions
Est: $400- $600
$1001 Bid
(4pc) Teak Wood Serving Trays, Knife, Dansk
Oct 08, 10:00 AM MST
(4pc) Teak Wood Serving Trays, Knife, Dansk
by EJ'S Auction & Appraisal
Est: $0- $0
$101 Bid
Primitive Wooden Cutlery Tray & Hanging Candle Box
Oct 15, 10:30 AM EDT
Primitive Wooden Cutlery Tray & Hanging Candle Box
by Terri Peters & Associates
Est: $5- $99,999
$251 Bid
Scanforn Teak Tray
Oct 09, 12:00 PM EDT
Scanforn Teak Tray
by Main Auction Galleries
Est: $100- $300
$500 Bids
Art Déco Teetablett / An Art Deco tea tray, deutsch, um 1920
Oct 08, 9:00 AM CEST
Art Déco Teetablett / An Art Deco tea tray, deutsch, um 1920
by Auktionshaus Schwab
Est: €80- €160
€800 Bids
A 19th century mahogany oval tray. 73 cm wide.
Oct 08, 10:00 AM BST
A 19th century mahogany oval tray. 73 cm wide.
by Rowley Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers
Est: £40- £60
£400 Bids
A decorative wooden tray on stand. 65 cm long.
Oct 08, 10:00 AM BST
A decorative wooden tray on stand. 65 cm long.
by Rowley Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers
Est: £30- £50
£300 Bids
PAINTED WOOD PRINTERS LETTERPRESS TRAY/ DRAWER
Oct 15, 10:00 AM CDT
PAINTED WOOD PRINTERS LETTERPRESS TRAY/ DRAWER
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $50- $80
$300 Bids
Vintage Hand Carved Wood Turtle Motif Tray
Oct 19, 10:00 AM EDT
Vintage Hand Carved Wood Turtle Motif Tray
by The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc.
Est: $20- $40
$10 Bids
A CHARMING ANTIQUE MAHOGANY ARTISTS BOX together with a book rack and tray. (3)
Oct 14, 9:30 AM BST
A CHARMING ANTIQUE MAHOGANY ARTISTS BOX together with a book rack and tray. (3)
by Hannam's Auctioneers
Est: £40- £60
£40 Bids
ARTIST SIGNED ABSTRACT PAINTED WOOD TRAY
Oct 11, 10:00 AM EDT
ARTIST SIGNED ABSTRACT PAINTED WOOD TRAY
by Uniques & Antiques
Est: $100- $140
$700 Bids
DANISH MODERN WOOD TRAYS, DANSK TUSCANY COLLECTION DIVIDED SERVER
Oct 11, 10:00 AM EDT
DANISH MODERN WOOD TRAYS, DANSK TUSCANY COLLECTION DIVIDED SERVER
by Uniques & Antiques
Est: $60- $100
$500 Bids
CARVED WOOD TRAY OF FARM SCENE PHILIPPINES
Oct 12, 12:00 PM EDT
CARVED WOOD TRAY OF FARM SCENE PHILIPPINES
by Converse Auctions
Est: $20- $40
$100 Bids
Vintage Carved Wood Tray
Oct 09, 1:00 PM EDT
Vintage Carved Wood Tray
by Designer Homes of Central Florida
Est: $45- $450
$450 Bids
A Hand Painted Italian Long Tray
Oct 08, 1:00 PM EDT
A Hand Painted Italian Long Tray
by Designer Homes of Central Florida
Est: $325- $3,250
$3250 Bids
FAUX BAMBOO GOLD TONE FRAME BREAKFAST SERVING TRAY. SIDE POCKETS FOR NEWSPAPERS.
Oct 13, 10:00 AM EDT
FAUX BAMBOO GOLD TONE FRAME BREAKFAST SERVING TRAY. SIDE POCKETS FOR NEWSPAPERS.
by Uniques & Antiques
Est: $40- $60
$300 Bids
Lot of 3 Antique Pieces-2 Trays & 1 Waste Basket
Oct 08, 10:00 AM EDT
Lot of 3 Antique Pieces-2 Trays & 1 Waste Basket
by Regency Auction House
Est: $100- $150
$500 Bids
Two Cutlery Trays.
Oct 15, 10:30 AM PDT
Two Cutlery Trays.
by Turner Auctions + Appraisals
Est: $80- $120
$500 Bids
Two Cutlery Trays.
Oct 15, 10:30 AM PDT
Two Cutlery Trays.
by Turner Auctions + Appraisals
Est: $80- $120
$500 Bids
Three Cutlery Trays.
Oct 15, 10:30 AM PDT
Three Cutlery Trays.
by Turner Auctions + Appraisals
Est: $80- $120
$500 Bids
Four Cutlery Trays.
Oct 15, 10:30 AM PDT
Four Cutlery Trays.
by Turner Auctions + Appraisals
Est: $80- $120
$500 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Wooden Trays


Uniques & Antiques

Uniques & Antiques

Adam's

Adam's

Turner Auctions + Appraisals

Turner Auctions + Appraisals

Rowley Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers

Rowley Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers