5 DIY ideas using wooden cratesBy Chrissy Brown

Upcycling with wooden crates has become very popular of late and it’s no wonder why when you see how versatile and useful they can be. Not only can they make great looking storage solutions but many crate projects are very simple to do and require little to no DIY skills.

While many retailers sell newly manufactured wooden crates, if you are after that vintage look then we recommend starting your search on gumtree for real fruit crates.

Scroll down for some crate inspiration – and don’t forget you can also paint them up in colours that fit in with your home décor.

1) Garden planter

Simply coat the crates in wood preserver and apply a suitable wood oil or paint. Next line the crate with some strong polythene, you may want to poke holes in the bottom of the polythene to allow for drainage and avoid your plants getting waterlogged. Then add in some hardcore at the bottom then soil and plants and voila – a great little planter.

Garden planter

We recommend placing it on bricks to help with drainage and preserve the wood.

2) Coffee Table

This could make a great addition to your living room or garden. All you need to do is arrange the crates like in the picture below. You can easily screw them together if you want it more sturdy. If the table is for use outdoors then don’t forget to first apply wood preserver and a suitable wood oil/stain or paint.

Coffee Table

3) Bookshelf/Storage unit

Crates make fabulous and quirky looking shelving and storage units. After staining or painting the crates, arrange them how you like and to fit the space you have and that’s basically all you need to do. We recommend putting in a few screws to make it extra sturdy although if jutting them up against the wall then this is not essential.

Bookshelf/Storage unit

You can also make them into a room divider by placing some facing in and some facing out.

4) Bedside or occasional table

Wooden crates are the perfect size to make a great looking bedside or occasional table in other living areas.

Bedside or occasional table

5) Shelves

Crates are a great way to display an array of things and also make a great bookshelf. Either hang them on the wall using appropriate fixings or simply put them on top of a piece of furniture or on the floor.


Hopefully you’ve been inspired to get out there and get creative with crates! And don’t forget if you want a less rustic and more modern look then paint can totally transform them!

Don’t forget to tweet us a picture to @Gumtree with #UpcycleRevolution.

For even more upcycling ideas, visit our upcycling listings.

Please note the content in this blog post is intended only to provide ideas for uses with crates. It is not intended to be comprehensive. You should refer to the instruction and safety manual of tools and paints you use and seek professional advice if unsure of how to execute the tasks.