I have a thing for great storage crates and baskets. In the past few months I’ve bought several with the intent to store books and blankets in our great room. The kids’ toys however seem to procreate and always take over all of our living spaces. As a result, all of those crates and baskets I bought with good intention have ended up quick solves for clean-up time. Useful still I suppose but still leave me lacking a storage solution for the things I actually want to keep in the great room. I recently got my first “big girl” power tool, a Royebi miter saw, and thought I’d test it by making a crate… Pretty simple DIY for those new to power tools and/or woodworking. I gave it an industrial touch by adding casters and finished it with rope handles. I quickly loaded it up with some of my favorite blankets before the boys could pack it with action figures. I love how it turned out and just might need to make a few duplicates to scatter throughout the house.
Three 1″x4″x8′ untreated wood slats
Birch Plywood, 1/4″ (or thicker depending on intent of use) x 24″ x 16.5″ (approx. measurements)
12 Wood screws
Stain, Minwax Dark Walnut
1″ Natural rope
1/4″ Natural rope
Drill, screw bit & 3/4″ drill bit
ScissorsI started by cutting each of the wood pieces with my miter saw.
I cut six pieces to measure 15″ in length and another six to 24″ in length.
I built three rectangles to build up the sides of the crate, hammering in a nail on each corner of the 24″ boards.
Once I had the three rectangles built, I traced the perimeter of one onto 1/4″ thick pre-sanded plywood to ensure an exact fit. (The measurements of lumber are often overstated and truly measure smaller than what’s called out at the hardware store, hence better measure yourself and/or trace).
The 1/4″ thick plywood is well suitable for my intent of filling with blankets, however depending how how you intend to utilize the crate, you may want to bump up the thickness.Hubs cut the plywood with a handsaw given that it wasn’t particularly thick, therefore quite simple to do so by hand. If you have a thicker board, a jig or table saw would do the trick.
Sand any edges if necessary. Before nailing in the base, I put a thin layer of wood glue around the edge of the base.
Then, at each corner, I hammered two nails through the base into the sides of the crate.
Next, I built up the sides of the crate. I used wood glue to attach the stack of three rectangles.
Then, to further hold the sides together, nailed 1″ x 1″ x 10″ cuttings of wood into the interior edges.
The base of the box is now complete. Be sure to allow any wood glue to dry thoroughly before proceeding to stain.
Using a clean rag, I stained the box with two coats of Dark Walnut Stain and finished with a coat of poly.
Once the stain dried, I drilled two holes into the narrower sides of the box, approx. 5.5″ inches apart. Depending on the thickness of the rope, you may need to increase your drill bit size or rotate as you drill to open up the hole beyond 3/4″.
*Note, if preferred, the holes can be drilled pre-stain.
I sanded over the holes along with some of the edges and sides of the box to make it appear a bit worn in.
With tape tightly wrapped around the cut edge of rope, I inserted the rope from the outside in. The tape prevents the rope from fraying as you insert through the hole.
I used a finer hemp rope to tie a whip knot around the rope. (There are great animated tutorials out there on how to tie whip knots.)
I trimmed the 1″ rope just under the knot as shown and repeated on the other side.
To finish off the crate, I screwed on four casters to the bottom of the crate.
Because my plywood was quite fine, I did not drill through the inner most hole of the caster.