Wooden Crates

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How many times did I search and search for inexpensive storage bins to fit a certain size opening?  A bazillion, I'm certain of it.  After a while, I gave up and decided to build my own.  Not only can you build large and small crates, the perfect size for whatever you need...it is way less expensive than buying.

I have read many of your comments wishing you know how to build your own projects.  Well, I'm telling you this is the place to get going.  This is a starter project = You can do this!!!!  This is exactly the type of project I taught myself when I started and it is very forgiving for small OOPS.  Just go slow, wear safety gear and keep your eyes on your fiingers when using a saw or a hammer. 

For those you you who don't have the fancy air nailer and miter saws, don't worry.  If you have a hammer and handsaw (or want to have your friendly orange or blue cut them for you) you can do this project.

First, you will need to buy 1x12 boards (or whatever size you need) and a bundle pack of those wooden strips which are about 3' long, 1.5" wide and .5" thick.  A bundle at blue cost $15, but they last for MANY projects. 
This is a sample of some crates I stained for a storage bench I built for the kids shoes (I'll post the bench plans soon).  Find the crates here.  The plans below are for a bathroom storage tower.

The space available for my opening was 11 tall by 20 across by 12 deep.  I generally like to make the crate about an inch shorter in the height and the width to allow for movement of pulling and pushing the crate in the space.  Draw a rough sketch of how you want yours to look and measure the space a couple of times to make sure you have the right sizes.

Cut the bottom board 17.5" (1.5" shorter to allow for the .75 board on each end) and the two sides 10".  Connect together with finish nails or screws.  You can add wood glue to make extra sturdy.

Cut 8 strips 19" long and tack two small nails at each end.  You can also add wood glue for extra strength.

Attach the strips on both sides.  You can either measure them perfectly to make them equal on both sides, but I just lined up the top piece and the bottom piece and eyeballed the middle two to make sure they were spaced nicely.

Sand lightly and finish with paint or stain or leave natural.  Stencil your kids names on the outside and use for their shoes by the foyer. 

Did you see the post I did on creating a homemade stain?  You can find it here.
You can also add wheels to the bottom to use under a table or a bed.  The possibilities are unlimited.  Pretty easy right?  I would love to see what you come up with for your home.  Post photos of your completed project on our facebook page.

Check out the storage tower I built to hold these crates here.

As always, thank you for taking time out of your day to visit The Quaint Cottage.

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  1. I've been meaning to make one of these and you give me courage!

  2. Thanks Ellie. I hope you give it a try and maybe post pics on the facebook page of your project. Good luck. :)

  3. Chris Senn of Senn's Pens and Exotic Boxes12/31/11, 9:43 PM

    My wife Jessica and I started a small business not to long ago and she has mainly been limited to the lathe turning pens as her woodworking skills are not as honed as mine are.I greatly appreciate your plans as they are going to help her get more of a feel for the math involved as well as getting her some time on the tablesaw with these simple crate designs that she can do herself.Thankyou