I’ve made several unsuccessful attempts at making a tray for a friend with steam bent sides. I finally ditched the idea and decided to glue up the whole tray and route out the shape with a bowl bit in the router.
I made several passes to shape the inside with a 1/2” straight bit using an elipse jig. With the inside of the tray walls shaped I adjusted the jig and defined the outside of the tray wall with a shallow pass. Then I used a 3/4” bowl bit with a top bearing guiding on the routed edge to plunge the finish sides on the inside of the bowl. I cleaned up the inside depth of the tray with several passes with a 3/4” straight bit riding on rails mounted to the top of the tray. I did most of the inside sanding with a 2” dia. sanding drum in the drill press. The bottom sanded with a r.o.s. With the inside shaped and sanded I trimmed the outside on the band saw and finish sanded it to final shape with a belt sander. Finished with r.o.s. and finish sander and a lot of hand sanding.
In the last picture you can see I salvaged the base from an earlier attempt.
The only place I found the handles was Paxton Hardware on line. These handles are meant to be mounted to the bottom surface of a tray, but the chamfers were on the wrong side. I rechamfered the bottoms carefully so as not to enlarge the holes too much. I did a little grinding on the handles to get them to fit the curve of the tray. I could have used side mount handles but I would have had to heat & bend the mounting flanges to line up with the outside radius.
Oh yeah, the picture frame with my gang’s pictures was made from a Wood magazine plan a few years ago. Made about 15 of them at once and have used them for wedding and holiday presents forever.