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Build your own crate on wheels from pallet wood to add storage to any room in your home. Here’s how.

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how to make a diy wooden crate out of pallet wood

It’s not often that you can claim to make something out of nothing, but this DIY wooden crate is just that. Today you are going to learn how you can take a free pallet destined for the landfill and turned it into this rustic pallet crate!

This little wooden crate can be used in just about any spot in your home for many different purposes–from home décor to organization to storage. The sky is the limit! You are sure to find the perfect spot for this farmhouse crate in your humble abode.

DIY Wooden Crate Tutorial

raw pallet wood for diy wooden crate build

You will need:

  • (1) Pallet
  • (2) 8-foot 1×2 boards
  • Wood glue
  • Nail gun
  • 1-inch brad nails
  • 2-inch brad nails
  • Wood stain
  • White paint
  • Hand sander*
  • Sandpaper
  • Rope
  • (4) Caster swivel wheels
  • Wood screws
  • Drill
  • Miter saw*
  • Table saw*
  • Tape measure
  • Hammer

***Use extreme caution and common sense when using power tools. Follow all manufacturer’s instructions, wear safety gear and build at your own risk.***

Step 1: Prepare your pallet.

First, you will disassemble the wood pallet. Note: Two pallets are shown above, but you will only need one for this project.

disassemble wood pallet

Taking apart a pallet can be a workout. It will take a little bit of elbow grease, but you can do it!

Once you have all the boards loose, use a hammer to remove any remaining nails.

remove nails wood pallet hammer
cut pallet wood to size for crate DIY

Step 2: Cut your pallet wood to size.

For this project, you will need eight 30-inch long pieces of pallet wood and eight 15-inch shorter pieces of pallet wood. The longer pieces will be the sides of your crate and the shorter boards will be the ends.

Step 3: Make your crate base.

To make the base, you will need to use 1×2 boards. For the bottom of your crate, you will need two 29-inch pieces and two 12⅛-inch pieces to make a rectangle. Secure these together with a nail gun and 2-inch brad nails.

DIY wood crate base

Next, you will need four 15¼-inch pieces. Again, secure these with your nail gun and the 2-inch brad nails.

diy wooden crate frame

Flip the frame on its side and then attach two 13¼-inch boards onto each end with the nail gun.

DIY wooden crate frame

Step 4: Attach the pallet boards to the sides of your crate.

Leave the crate frame lying on its side. Run a line of wood glue along the bottom and sides of the crate frame.

wood glue crate sides

Then you will start attaching the long pallet boards to the side of your crate frame. This time you will use 1-inch brad nails and your nail gun to attach the boards.

wooden crate sides glue

Flip the entire thing over and repeat with the longer boards on the opposite side of the crate.

Tip: Use one of the shorter pieces to keep your boards straight and spaced evenly along your frame. Just move it along as you attach the longer boards with the nail gun.

guide wood crate side assembly

Now it’s time to attach the shorter boards on the ends of your crate the same way you did the longer boards.

short sides assembly wood crate DIY

For the bottom floor of the crate, we cut boards to fit inside. Notice how we had to notch the corner piece. Then you will nail the boards into place with the nail gun and 1-inch brad nails.

custom cut wooden crate bottom

To finish building your crate, you will need to nail two 26-inch long 1×2 board along either side of your crate.

brace sides wooden crate
crate assembled sand pallet wood

Step 5: Sand your pallet crate.

How rustic you want your crate to look will help determine how much sanding you want to do. I sanded mine quite a bit. Be prepared to go through quite a bit of sandpaper though. Pallet wood is rough!

drill holes wooden crate handles

Step 6: Drill your holes for the rope handle.

Next, you’ll need to drill your holes for the rope handle. I chose to do mine three inches from the side. You can customize the placement however you’d like.

Step 7: Paint or stain your crate. (optional)

Just for the record, pallet wood does not stain well at all. You won’t be able to get a pretty finish like my DIY console table. I chose to apply a layer of dark walnut stain. It was very blotchy! Then I let it dry. Then I went back over it with white spray paint. After that coat completely dried, I sanded down the crate. This gave it a nice worn barn wood look.


Step 8: Attach your rope handles.

I used this ⅜- inch thick outdoor rope for my handles. You will cut two 16-inch pieces. I tied the ends of the rope and then fused them with a flame to prevent fraying.


Step 9: Attach your caster swivel wheels to your crate.

Simply screw a caster onto each corner of your crate!


The only thing left to do is to find the perfect spot for your rustic DIY pallet crate in your home. Use it to store extra pillows and blankets, toys, firewood on your patio or to organize your pantry. You are sure to find the perfect spot!

DIY wooden crate on wheels finished

Have you ever tackled a pallet project before? Do you have any tips or tricks? If you attempt this project, let me know in the comments below. I’d love to hear how it goes! If you have any questions, drop those in the comments as well.

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About the Author

Ginger Bowie

Ginger Bowie is the blogger behind Ginger Snap Crafts. Ginger loves sharing her crafty ideas, latest DIY projects, yummy recipes, organization tips, kids crafts and more with her readers. Ginger is the wife to one amazing guy & mom to 5 wild & crazy kiddos that range in age from 6 to 19. Her family loves calling Northwest Arkansas home. She has a crazy & busy life, and she wouldn’t change a thing. Ginger Snap Crafts is a place that she hopes inspires others to create along with her! If she can do it, she knows you can, too!

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