A few months ago I found an old tray/frame that was part of my nephew's puzzle toy. It had crayon marks and even had paint smudged all over it. The frame was messy and was just lying around the house collecting dust. So I decided to get it and make something useful out of it.
Get your old tray/frame.
If it's an unsightly disaster, give it a fresh coat of paint.
I used a nice flat black spray paint.
Measure the inside of your frame/tray, and create a template using your scrap cardboard.
You can use old cereal boxes for this.
If, unlike me, your cork material is big and squarish - simply use your template and cut around it.
If, like me, your cork material is an old potholder/coaster and is round, cut the biggest squares you can get out of it.
Keep the excess trimmings. You might need it later.
Assemble your cork pieces together.
Use your frame for this BUT DON'T ATTACH THE CORK YET.
Use the extra trimmings for tight irregularly shaped areas.
With your glue gun, stick your template to the cork.
Again, CARDBOARD TO CORK.
DO NOT ATTACH TO FRAME YET.
When your cardboard+cork is set.
Pop it out carefully and flip it over.
(or flip it over, then pop it out)
Some of the tiny cork pieces might fall out, just glue them back on to the cardboard.
Set aside your fram/tray
Get your fabric. The same shape as your cardboard+cork piece, but remember to add around 2-3" on the sides for allowance.
Put the cork on top and at the center of the fabric.
Cork side to the wrong side of the fabric (if it has a print).
Fold over the allowance and staple that to the cork.
For reinforcement (this is optional) insert some pins on the corners of the fabric.
It should look like this.
Grab your frame/tray, and spread some glue on it.
I used E6000 for, you know, industrial strength.
Pop in your cork+cardboard+cloth combo. Make sure it fits nice and tight and cozy.
Press down and wait for the glue to set.
AND THEN YOU'RE DONE â™¥