This shop featuring my DIY football tray has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser, MARS. All opinions are mine alone. #ScoreAtCVS #CollectiveBias
While I’m not loving the weather we’ve had in Chicago as fall descended, I’m thrilled that football season finally returned. We love football in my house. The fact that I can watch college or professional football almost any day of the week makes me happy. Saturday we watch college football all day and night when we’re home or listen to it on the radio in our car. Sunday we repeat this for professional football, and ditto with Monday night.
With all that football watching, you know we eat and snack in front of the tv more than we normally do. Timeouts don’t last long in football, so commercial breaks don’t lend themselves for long trips to the kitchen. Instead, we bring the food to us. I have a tray to easily carry everything we need. (That’s way easier than making multiple trips, right?) Unfortunately, I noticed that the tray is getting stains from weekly use.
When we have guests, I don’t want them seeing my stains. I want them focusing on the game and the great spread we offer, which is why I decided to create a DIY football tray that I can use for game day. I can easily remove my football field mat and use the tray without it for other occasions. Genius, right?
Now that I have this DIY football tray, I can easily bring in our favorite snacks: SNICKERS®, popcorn, and (of course?) football brownies. I love that I found these awesome football themed SNICKERS® bars at my local CVS. I had to pick up all five of the sayings on the packaging, of course, plus a SNICKERS® Crisper because (shhh) they’re my favorite. CVS can so easily be a one stop shop for game day with all the snacks and drinks you need. I’m lucky that mine is in walking distance, so if I run out of pop or chips or SNICKERS®, we can make a quick run over. But only during halftime, of course!
Next week when my friends come over to watch the game (ok games, who am I kidding?), I can’t wait to show them my new fancy DIY football tray. It was so easy to make and simple, too. When my son first saw it, he totally geeked out over it, and he’s not even the big football fan in the family.
I kept mine simple, but you could easily make this much more complex by adding the yard counts (10, 20, 30, etc), the triangles between them, the hashmarks on the middle of the field, and more. My tray is only 16×9 inches inside, however, so I don’t want to crowd it with graphics. In this case, I feel simpler is better.
How to Create a DIY Football Tray
Start with your favorite tray. The DIY football tray isn’t a permanent feature, so you don’t need to buy a new one. Either purchase artificial turf or find an indoor/outdoor mat with a rough texture. I loved the mat I used because it includes subtle stripes in the texture which helped me cut the mat to size and organize my painting.
Measure the bottom of your tray, and cut your mat to size. You’re better off cutting it a little larger than you think you’ll need and trimming as needed than trying to be exact and accidentally cutting it too small. Use a permanent marker to help sizing as you cut. The paint covers any marks you make on the mat now. Once your mat is cut to size, set it in the tray to verify that it fits. Trim as needed.
Take your mat outside and place it on a tarp or cardboard. I love using a large cardboard box which ensures I don’t drop my wet mat when I put it in the garage for safe drying. Shake your green spray paint can well, then spray per directions. Depending on the weave of your mat, you may need to let this dry 40 minutes then spray again to get an artificial turf color.
Once your mat is sufficiently dry, bring it inside and prep to create your yard markers. Start in the middle and determine how many yard markers make sense for your size mat. I chose to do five for my 16 inch mat to avoid it looking too crowded and busy. Gather small paintbrushes with a variety of brush heads for gross and detail work.
Use tape to mark off where you will paint, pressing the tape firmly onto your mat to act as your guidelines. Use your brushes to paint the lines, painting thickly enough to ensure the white covers your green paint well.
Once the paint dries, carefully remove the tape.
If you choose, you can add the numbers to your yard markers using stencils and other details, but I love the subtle nod to a football field with its minimalist simplicity. Once dry, place the mat in your tray, and your DIY football tray is complete. There’s no need to glue it down as the mat stays in place, and this allows you to use the tray without the mat, as well.
Football Field Brownies
As much as I love my SNICKERS®, popcorn, and more from CVS, I’m me. I love adding a fun personal touch to my food. These football field brownies are fun to make and really add a nice touch to your football party (and complement your DIY football tray perfectly). You can even use store bought brownies and premade green frosting. I made mine from scratch, but that’s just how I roll.
The fun is in the decorating. It’s way simpler than it looks. All you need is marshmallows and some powdered sugar. Really!
Add a bit of powdered sugar to your rolling surface and place the marshmallow on it. Roll gently, then flip. This prevents the marshmallow from sticking to the rolling pin. Take your time and roll the marshmallow as flat as possible.
Once it is rolled out, use a bench scraper or other straight edge to cut straight lines for your down markers for the brownies. Trim to fit the brownies, and lay across the center of each brownie.
Roll out another marshmallow and use a small number cookie cutter to cut out three zeros per marshmallow. If you don’t have number cookie cutters, you can use the cap of a water bottle (dip it in powdered sugar first) to cut the outside and a wide straw to cut out the inside. Then just stretch the circle slightly to make an oval zero. Repeat the process to create zeros for each brownie, as needed.
Create more flat marshmallows and use your number cookie cutters to create your numbers for the 10, 20, 30, etc. Again, if you don’t have small number cookie cutters, you can use sharp scissors to freehand numbers. You’d be surprised how well patience and scissors work! Place on your brownies, and voila!
Football Party Prep with Your DIY Football Tray
Do you need more game day ideas? If you want more to accompany this DIY football tray, you’re in luck – check this out.
Make sure you stop by CVS. These football themed SNICKERS® are perfect for game day. Bonus? You can save $1 on SNICKERS® singles or king size bars at CVS with this digital coupon.
Who will you cheer for next week?
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Monday 9th of December 2019
[…] fall, Saturday is game day around my house. Actually, Sunday is game day, too. Needless to say, I have a habit of making a lot of appetizers to snack on instead of a full […]
Friday 7th of October 2016
This is a great idea! I would have never thought to use a mat, but the texture looks perfect after it is painted! (client)
Thursday 10th of November 2016
Thanks, Samantha! It turned out perfect, and I plan to make more for more holidays!