Rustic Wood Box

5 Materials
2 Hours

Wood boxes are incredibly handy to have for decorating, so I’m going to teach you how to build one so I can refer back to it later. Also I will teach you how to make it look old and rustic using some special techniques.


  • 1 1×6 cut at 24″ (buy 1 1x6x6 board)
  • 2 1×4 cut at 5.5″ (buy 1 1x4x6 board)
  • 2 1×4 cut at 25.5″
  • Nail gun or 1 1/4″ screws
  • Wood glue

Here’s what you need to stain it:

  • #1 steel wool
  • white vinegar
  • black tea
  • classic gray stain by Minwax

You should be able to get this wood cut at your big box hardware store, but if you have a miter saw, I encourage you to try it yourself. It’s actually super easy.

Step 1:

Using wood glue and a nail gun (or screws), attach the two end pieces to the 1×6.

Step 2:

Turn the box on its side and glue & nail (or screw) the 25.5″ pieces on either side. You might want to double check the length of the board to make sure it doesn’t need trimming or lengthening. But if your 1×6 is 24″ and the width of the 1x4s are 3/4″, it should be pretty close.

Now you have a wood box! Couldn’t be easier. 

To make your box rustic, you will need to bang and scratch it up. Use a hammer, screwdriver, wrench, whatever to bang it up. I also use the backside of the hammer to scrape lines into it to kind of imitate saw mill lines.

First you take a brush and paint on the black tea. This helps bring out the tannins in the wood and also adds a dark black element to the stain. Leave it on for several minutes and let it dry. Then use another brush and brush on the steel wool mixture. Now set a timer for about 5 minutes.

After 5 minutes, you wipe it off, and the wood should look like this:

Looks pretty cool right? Old and stuff? Well this combination kind of was different on different pieces of wood.

Let the box dry for several hours and then you can seal it with a polyurethane or just leave it. 

That’s it! That’s your rustic wood box.

Suggested materials:

  • 1 1×6 cut at 24″ (buy 1 1x6x6 board)
  • 2 1×4 cut at 5.5″ (buy 1 1x4x6 board)
  • 2 1×4 cut at 25.5″
See all materials

Honeybear Lane
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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