I’m in the process of helping friends redesign their basement and it’s been such a fun process seeing the space come together. We’ve done a lot of really cool projects that I can’t wait to reveal but this most recent project was to design a storage piece for under their big screen TV. We needed a long, narrow piece with good storage, to fit a teenagers’ style, that was both rustic and industrial. This rolling cart made from wood crates was the perfect solution.
I did a similar project last year combining wood storage crates and rolling casters. Check that post out here. You can find wood crates everywhere – craft stores like Michael’s or home supply stores like Home Depot. And they’re often on sale. They’re constructed pretty well for an inexpensive crate. But I really love the fact that they’re a little crude and imperfect. In other words, they have potential.
You’ll need the following materials:
• Wood crates – I used 6
• Wood pieces for top and bottom. I bought a piece of 1″ thick common board and had it cut into 2 pieces to fit.
• Four 2″ swivel industrial casters & screws
• Paint and/or stain
• Wood glue
• Sandpaper, electric sander
• Tools: nails, screwdriver, hammer, tape measure, drill
Here’s the how-to on this easy DIY project:
1. Using your wood glue, attach the crates together how you would like them to go. I used 6 crates and did 2 rows of 3.
2. Use clamps (or chip clips!) to hold the crates in place until the glue is dry.
3. I also nailed the crates together for extra support. I put one in each corner wherever 2 crates same together.
4. Attach the top and bottom pieces of wood the same way – with glue and nails. When all the glue is dry, sand the entire piece inside and out. I used an electric sander to make this process much easier and quicker. You’ll need to sand any small areas – such as hard to reach corners and inside the handles – by hand though. Be sure to wipe down the crates when done.
5. I decided to paint the cart with two different finishes. The walls in my friends’ basement are Behr French Silver so I used the same color on the inside of this piece. I wanted a different finish for the outside to create a two-tone effect so I used a water-based, semi-gloss pecan stain for the outside. My friends installed a shiplap accent wall with different shades of stained wood. This wall is so cool and I wanted this rolling cart to work with both this wall and the painted walls. If you opt for this technique, it is definitely more time consuming and you’ll need a little more patience – but I think the effect is almost as cool as their shiplap wall!
6. To do this technique, paint the insides your paint color. I started off using painter’s tape but it didn’t stick very well to the unfinished wood. So I opted to just paint it freehand and be very careful at the edges.
It needed 2 coats and be sure to get the areas inside the handles and between the slats. After the paint was dry, I sanded down any of the unfinished areas where the paint seeped through.
7. Next, I stained the outside, top and bottom with the pecan stain. I added a coat of semi-glass clear to protect the stain too.
8. Once it was dry, I turned the piece over and attached the casters in each of the corners with 0.75″ screws. I drilled a start hole then manually screwed the casters in.
Now you have a unique rolling cart with lots of separated storage – and a really cool color combination.
I staged it so you could see how it would look but I can’t wait to see it set up in my friends’ new basement!
Stay tuned for more on the basement project. Have a great day!