We needed a place to store a bunch of blankets and extra pillows in the family room. I looked into getting one of those big trunks that kids take to college but a good one would cost like $200. So as usual, it was time to DIY something for much cheaper. This is how I made a DIY Wood Storage Crate.
Why I needed a DIY Wood Storage Crate
You see, my daughter has a lot of sleepovers and it would definitely be easier easy to keep the blankets and pillows somewhere that they can easily get them. They don’t go to sleep until long after my wife and I have. And of course my daughter doesn’t plan ahead and get the sleeping stuff ready in advance. So this meant that she’d wake us up at like 2:00 am saying that she needs and extra blanket.
That wasn’t fun so I needed a more self serve way of storing these extra sleeping stuff. And if it was in the family and it looked good, then those are big pluses.
I saw the Make Something video he made a DIY wood storage crate from a single 2×6 and that was great. A DIY wood storage create was exactly what I needed. It could go behind the sofa, it would look nice and it could be DIY’ed for cheap.
I decided to make my box a little bigger than in the Make Something video to fit the space that I had. It also needed to be bigger to store queen sized comforters and pillows. Those things are big even when neatly folded (although my daughter has yet to fold anything). So I went with a instead of using a single 2×6 like in the video I used a 2×10 and I used one and half of them.
How to DIY a Crate
The key to this project is having a table saw. If you want to rip a two by piece of lumber, the easiest and safest way to do it is with a table saw. Or course it’s winter, so I set up my Dewalt job site saw outside and started ripping.
This project can be done in about 30-60 minutes if you don’t want to sand anything. If you’re using the DIY wood storage crate in your garage or shed, then no sanding would be needed. But I absolutely wanted to sand these pieces smooth because they’re going to live in the playroom. Should probably apply a stain or a polyurethane too. That would make it look really nice but that would add a few days of drying time (and even more sanding) to the project.
Once you have all the pieces cut, lie out the four sides to make sure you have everything you need. Make a spacer and put the wood slats where they’ll go when you glue and nail them. I didn’t do this and was short one slat. Not a big deal if you have a shop and the table saw stays in it’s place. But like I said, I did this project in the winter and had to drag my work site saw outside to make the cuts. It was very cold outside I had already brought everything back in and cleaned up. Not fun. The moral of this story is to make sure you have everything you need before moving on to the next step.
Using the spacer, I laid the wood slats across the 2×2 pieces. You’re going to want to do the two longer sides first. One by one I picked up a slat and glued it, then tacked it in place with a brad nailer.
If you plan on using your crate as bookshelves or putting something more substantial that blankets and pillows in them, I’d suggest using some screws to hold this together. But before you drive a screw into the wood, be sure to pre-drill. You don’t want to split your wood and then have to go back and do more cutting.
Once the two longer sides are complete, you can start the short sides. Find a way to prop up one of the longer sides and lay the slat across it. Glue and nail as before. This is where having a nice shop would come in handy. A saw horse or a workbench could be used to prop up the sides. I had to get creative with clamps. Once you get a few pieces nailed it it should start standing by itself.
Complete all four sides and connect them together and you’ll have a nice rectangle DIY wood storage crate. Obviously you can make different sizes to fit your needs but no matter what size you decide on, you build it the same way.