Using Diamond Painting Trays: 4 Tips and Tricks


January 26, 2024

Time reading

2 minutes
hand holding drill pen

Every kit purchased from Diamond Art Club® comes with a set of tools, including a diamond painting tray. You know that the tray is perfect for holding your drills while working on a painting, but you might not know how to get the most out of this helpful diamond painting tool. So, what is the best way to use one, and how can it take your diamond painting game to the next level? Keep reading to find out! 

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1. Arrange Diamond Drills the Right Way

Diamond painting trays are designed to keep drills lying flat with the faceted side facing upward. They also built to align the drills in straight rows, making it much easier to pick up several at a time with a multi-placer tool. 

But, how do you get the drills to lay flat

Pour drills of a single color into the tray, Be careful not to fill it too full: there needs to be room for the drills to move around without spilling. Then, gently shake the tray from side to side until most of the drills have arranged themselves into neat rows. Carefully tap the spout end of the tray. This will cause the drills to slide backward and form neat, compact lines. Now you’re ready to pick up your drills, either individually or with a multi-placer.

Once you’ve applied all of the arranged drills onto the canvas, add more drills to the tray if needed and then repeat the shaking and tapping to get more lined up. When you’re finished with that color, simply use the spout end to pour them back into their bag or container. 

2. Keep Your Tray in Place with a Sticky Pad

Do you hold the diamond tray in your hand while using an easel to work on a painting? While this works for a lot of people, holding the tray makes you much more likely to drop or spill drills. That’s a mess no one wants to deal with! Fortunately, there’s a simple solution.

When working on an angled surface like an easel, use a slightly sticky self-adhesive pad to stick the tray to your canvas. You can find these pads in the automotive department at many stores,  marketed as/for phone holders for the car, or search online for “double-sided adhesive pads.

hand holding drill pen

Using one of these pads will keep your drills close at hand while ensuring that you won’t accidentally drop or tilt the tray. Even if you are not using an easel, a double-sided self-adhesive pad is ideal for holding the tray on a flat surface. The pad will lower your risk of bumping the tray and knocking it off the table. 

3. Use an Organizer to Stack Your Trays

Diamond painting tray organizers are a fantastic accessory that make it easy to keep trays filled with various colors of drills neat and organized. Stacking your trays keeps everything all in one place and works great when working on detailed designs that feature many different colors. Simply search for diamond paintingray organizers online and you’ll see that there area variety of styles and sizes available at very affordable prices. You should have no problem finding one that perfectly suits your needs. 

4. Use Trays to Break Apart Clumps of Drills

Encountering clumps of diamond drills? Avoid separating them by hand. Simply place them in a tray, cover with another tray, and gently press. The drills should easily come apart, often with a satisfying pop. If they're particularly stubborn, a little rubbing between the trays can do the trick. 

5. Alternative Method for Separating Stuck Drills


Our customer Jana Holmberg recommends a soft rubber brayer for a more delicate approach. Place the drills in a thick freezer bag and roll them with the brayer. This method is gentle on the drills and the canvas. If drills stick to the bag, a rubbed-in dryer sheet helps. For convenience, cut off a corner of the bag for easy pouring. This technique is an efficient and gentle alternative to trays or drill grinders. 

Static Tip: If your diamond drills frequently cling to each other, you need look no further than your laundry room for a solution. Grab a can of anti-static spray and spritz a small amount on them. Alternatively, keep a small piece of a regular dryer sheet in each bag or container to prevent static cling




Diamond painting trays may not always get as much love and recognition as some other diamond painting tools, but they’re an important part of any project. And once you’ve completed a few kits, you’re sure to have extras laying around that you can use to try the tips and tricks above. Have fun! 

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