Introduction: Modify a Crate Into a Bedside Table

About: Everything I make is done with love and imperfection.

The main point of this project is to feature the create in it's original state, but modify it to function as a bedside table. Therefore, finding a crate that you like the look of is essential. Other than the crate, I tried to use only things that I had as scrap from other projects. This is a simple fun project that can be completed in an afternoon!


  • Crate - I found an old '2 Way' pop crate, which was 11.5" x 19" x 12", but any size will do.
  • Scrap wood - I mostly used 1" x 2" scraps from another project. I also needed a piece of wood to fill in where the crate didn't have a board, and used a scrap piece of plywood for that.
  • Nails or screws
  • Steel strapping - this is optional. I wanted my crate to sit directly on the supports without a cross piece of wood (but wood would also work).
  • Paint or stain


  • Measuring tape
  • Hammer or drill
  • Saw (mitre saw is handy, but you can also hand cut)
  • Sanding block
  • Paintbrush

Step 1: Measurements and Cuts

This step will probably take you the longest time of the whole project, as you need to decide the size of your table.

Stand the crate on its side and decide how high you want the finished product to stand.

The height of my crate standing on its side was 12 inches, and I wanted the finished product to be 24 inches high. That made it easy for me because I could measure how long the legs needed to be against the crate, which was the same height as I wanted. I placed my piece of wood across the crate and copied the angle onto the wood using a square. If your legs will be a different height than your crate, it would be easiest to draw out a square on a piece of large scrap paper with the same height and width of the legs that you want, then measure from there.

Cut 4 pieces of scrap wood the same length (20.5 inches for me), with the same angles (55 degrees, in my case).

Measure the width of the crate as well, and cut 3 support pieces of wood the same length (My crate was 11.5 inches, but I cut 11 inches so that they were inset a little bit).

An extra step here for me was that I wanted to fill the hole at the bottom of my crate, so I found a piece of plywood the same width as the crate wood, and measured and cut it to size.

Make sure to sand all your pieces of wood.

Step 2: Assembly

Start by putting nails through the middle of each set of the long table legs, making sure that the angle is correctly positioned. Now you have two X shapes.

Then use either wood or strapping to fix the X shapes in place along the top - these will be just less than the same length as your crate (in my case 18 inches, as my crate was 19 inches). You can see in the picture that I used a combination of both wood and strapping as the wood was to fill the hole in the back of the crate. Using strapping in the front made it so that the legs sat flush against the crate.

Now nail the support pieces about 3 inches up from the ends of the crates. These will fix the X shaped legs to one another. I ended up using one additional support piece under the top of the crate, you can see that in the second picture.

I nailed it all together and painted it black with some cabinet paint I had left over.

The final step is to fix the legs onto the crate. I wanted to preserve the crate as much as possible, so didn't put too many nails into it. I ended up just using one nail that fixed the middle support piece through the strapping and into the crate. Otherwise, I am relying on the weight of the crate to keep it in place.

And voila! A super chic little bedside table!

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