How to Make a Cutlery Tray


Silverware in a drawer often become messy when the drawer is opened and closed knocking the spoons and forks into the butter knives. Having a cutlery tray inside the drawer provides housing for the utilities and lessens the chances of getting cut by a random knife. Plastic store-bought trays do not always fit into a drawer and the fancy adjustable versions pop back into the original position with too much wear. Making a homemade tray guarantees a perfect fit and the correct amount of space for your needs.

Things You'll Need

  • 1-by-4-foot plywood, 3/16-inch thick
  • Tape measure
  • Table saw
  • 3/32-inch table saw blade
  • Wood glue
  • 1/2-inch screws
  • Drill
  • Measure the length, width and height of the drawer you want to store your cutlery in from the inside.

  • Cut two, 1-by-4-foot plywood board, 3/16-inch thick, to the length of the drawer.

  • Cut two, 1-by-4-foot plywood boards, 3/16-inch thick, to the width of the drawer.

  • Cut four, 6-inch long 1-by-4-foot plywood boards, 3/16-inch thick.

  • Create two, 3/16-by-3/32-inch dadoes on each drawer-length board at one end, now the front, and 6 inches from the front with a 3/32-inch blade in a table saw. These dadoes will hold the edges of the small cutlery housing.

  • Cut 3/16-by-3/32-inch dadoes into the two drawer-width boards. Place the dadoes according to space needed for the size of the cutlery placed in the drawer. For example, place the utilities on one of the boards to see which will need more room -- a butter knife will take less space than a spoon. Also take into account the number of items you own. If you have more butter knives than spoons, you may need more butter knife room. These dadoes need to match on each width-length board in position to keep the slots straight.

  • Place wood glue into all the dadoes. Be careful not to put too much that it will squeeze out the sides when the boards are placed inside. Insert the drawer-width boards, dado side facing each other, into the dadoes on the drawer-length boards. Push the 6-inch boards into the dadoes in the drawer-width boards.

  • Place scrap wood on the outside of the drawer-length boards at the front and at 6-inches from the front. Place vices on the scraps of wood. Tighten the vice at 6-inches before tightening the vice at the front of the tray.

  • Allow the glue holding the cutlery tray together to seal for 24 hours.

  • Place the tray inside the drawer. It is measured to fit perfectly, however, you can drill 1/2-inch screws, from the inside of the tray toward the drawer sides, to keep it in place.

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