Introduction: Simple Cedar Flower Box
This cedar flowering box was crafted from old fence slats. I thought it up while in the shower thinking of a way to pass the time while I glue another project together. Obviously I wanted it to be nice but didn't want it to have lots of parts, take too much time to build, or make me think too much. End result is a beautiful flower box, made with less than 20 easy cuts on the miter saw (or skill saw).
2- 17" x 5" Side
2 - 7" x 5" End
1 ~ 16" x 3¹⁄₈ Bottom
Drill & drill bit
Please read, understand, and follow instruction manuals for all power tools. Wear your safety glasses.
Step 1: Give the Cedar a Fresh Look
The cedar is old and has been out in the elements for years, giving it a nice rustic look. The following steps
will give the flower box a "new" look but aren't necessary.
Run each side of the wood through the planner taking only a 1/16" each pass.
Or just sand it with 80-100 grit sand paper.
Joint 1 edge to create a flat/square surface to cut to width on the table saw.
Rip all the pieces on the table saw to 5"
Step 2: Cutting the Ends
The 45° cuts on the End and Side pieces will join together making a 90° "miter joint".
Miter joints are stronger and look much nicer than a simple "butt joint".
The 20° angle cuts are going to give the box a little style.
Check for cracks before making the pieces, especially the End pieces. They are only 7" long so even a small crack will make it very weak.
Turn/swivel the miter saw at 20°
Tilt the blade to 45° and make a cut on the edge of one of the boards. Removing any cracks or unwanted knots in the wood.
Measure 7" at the top, then using a quick square draw a line across the board at 20°. This is to make it easier to align with the saw blade making a accurate cut.
To Reduce waste visualize the cut before you make it.
Remember the Angles
The 20° angle will create a trapezoid shape. I swiveled the saw to the opposite 20°mark and flipped the board accordingly.
The 45° angle should be on the same side as the first 45° cut.
If you ended up with a parallelogram:
Just set up the angle correctly and recut.
If you have 45° cuts on opposite sides:
Retry...YAY for learning!
Repeat, because 2 End pieces are required.
Step 3: Cutting the Sides
Swivel the saw to 0°
Tilt the saw blade to 45°
Make a cut on one edge.
Measure&mark at 17" then make a line straight across with a square.
Be sure that the 45° cuts will be on the same side.
Repeat, because 2 Sides pieces are required.
Step 4: Trim the Ends
The end pieces are taller by about 1/2 inch because they were cut at 20°
Use a clamp or a brick to hold down one of the side pieces,
Align an end piece with the side piece at the top of the box (creating the 90° joint) so the extra material is at the bottom.
Make a mark
Swivel the saw to 20°and make the cut
Be sure to cut the bottom. If the top is cut it won't be 7" any more and won't match the opposite end piece.
Repeat - the other end piece needs to match.
Measure the new height or
Stack the 2 end parts aligning them at the top and draw a line at the bottom.
Step 5: Assemble
With a side piece clamped down (Like when trimming the End piece) focus on aligning the top and outside corners of the 2 parts
Pre drill holes for screws using a drill bit with smaller diameter than the screws.
Fasten the joint.
Use at least 2 screws or nails for each joint.
I used 1-1/4" sheet rock screws with an 1/8" drill bit
If holes aren't pre drilled it is likely that the wood will crack.
Unclamp the side piece, turn it, reclamp
Repeat step 1 attaching the second End piece to the Side piece
Make sure that the trapezoid shapes mirror each other creating a "top" and "bottom"
Attach the second Side piece to the End pieces using the same technique.
If you use a nail gun make sure your hands are clear in case the joint is missed or a nail follows the grain of the wood
and pops out.
Step 6: The Bottom
The bottom can be made at least 2 ways...
With the Miter Saw
Measure the inside of the box at the bottom. (~3-1/8")
Tilt the miter saw to 20°
The swivel part at 0°
Cut 1 end
flip board to create proper cut
Repeat until the bottom can be mostly covered.
Because the box needs to be able to drain it doesn't need to be perfect. You want a couple gaps in the bottom.
But not so big dirt will fall through.
Fasten the bottom pieces. Leaving small gaps.
The angles make the bottom strong so the nails are mostly so they don't fall out when there isn't plants inside.
I just used 1 screw on each side of the box for each piece.
Alternative Method with Table saw
Measure the inside of the box (~3 1/8")
Length should be (~16")
Adjust saw blade to 20°
Adjust the fence to 3 1/8"
flip the board to cut 20° on the opposite side
Drill holes in the bottom to allow for drainage
Screw into place
Runner Up in the
Participated in the
Instructables Green Design Contest
9 years ago on Introduction
That looks great! Wonderful for your flowers :)