Any ideas what to do with these?

I saw these wood boxes at a local library sale and just couldn't pass them up. Any ideas what I could do with them? They are 3.5 x 20 inches. The metal divider is permanent but I could cut it out.
q craft ideas for wooden boxes, diy, repurposing upcycling, storage ideas, woodworking projects
  109 answers
  • Gem Murray Gem Murray on Nov 06, 2014
    I love them. 2 options come to mind. 1) a planter for succulents 2) A condiment holder for the table

  • Chris aka monkey Chris aka monkey on Nov 06, 2014
    @Christy Sudderth i have thought and thought you could line them with plastic and make planters for succulent like gem said.. organize recipe cards, a cute way to store cans or craft paints or box them up and mail to me thanks xx

  • Lauren Z Lauren Z on Nov 06, 2014
    I think they would be a great way to display/store Christmas cards you receive. Or how about cards YOU plan to give? Lined with a bread cloth, serve dinner rolls in them. Display family photos.

  • Victoria Victoria on Nov 06, 2014
    I love old drawers attached to wooden fences or the exterior wall of buildings as planters for all type of plants. You could also remove the interior workings hang them upside down on a wall and use them as shelves or right side up in a bathroom for storage.

  • Swan Road Designs Swan Road Designs on Nov 06, 2014
    Since you say it could be possible to remove the metal parts, I would do that and then turn the wood boxes into holders for fingertip towels in the bathroom. Roll the towels and stand them up in the boxes. They could also be used to hold assorted toiletries on the bathroom counter. They could be stenciled, stained, name it. I would hesitate to paint them because the box joints on the ends are so pretty. Perhaps they could be incorporated in a stripe-like design Turn them on their sides and stack (staggered for interest), hanging on the wall, to create a shelf-like display space. That way, it wouldn't mater if there's an opening in the bottom. Just my take and what came off the top of my head.

  • Tina Tina on Nov 07, 2014
    You could get some of the hardward to where you can make them slide in and out and mount them under your sink in your kitchen to store spices, extra silver ware. sky is the limit have fun with it..let us know what you come up with...

  • Karen Silbernagel Karen Silbernagel on Nov 07, 2014
    I see spices! On there side on wall or mounted under upper cabinets.

  • Providence Hill Providence Hill on Nov 07, 2014
    You hang them on the wall like like I did here for storage. :)

  • Carole Carole on Nov 07, 2014
    Use as shelves in a pantry for canned goods, tins of drinks etc if they are wide enough or for herbs and spices, to hold boxes of stock cubes, matches and all those small items that normally get lost in a pantry. They could be mounted on the inside of the pantry doors? Are they big enough to hold your tin foil and cling wrap and baking paper etc?

  • Lorna Merryfield Lorna Merryfield on Nov 07, 2014
    would make awesome storage for craft paints and attach them to a wall. I have just the right wall too.

  • Sandi MacDougall Sandi MacDougall on Nov 07, 2014
    soap mold

  • MARY FISHER MARY FISHER on Nov 07, 2014
    Would like to see them covered at bottom (don't remove the metal) and use as flower window boxes. Also use to store long rolls of wrapping paper, if not to heavy, could leave as is or paint, stain them, hang up and down like it was standing, put a vase of flowers in them, maybe in Kitchen, bdrms? I'm sure there are many ideas, the mind is slow right now! lol

  • Betty Van Sant Betty Van Sant on Nov 07, 2014
    They could be planters

  • S S on Nov 07, 2014
    I have one hanging in my kitchen holding my prettiest and most used cookbooks. You'll need some heavy duty anchors to secure it but it works great!

  • Sharlene clair Sharlene clair on Nov 07, 2014
    I see them as shelves, alone, stacked, or staggered for display or real purpose. You could put them in a child's room corner, table height and make them book cases. Then you could go higher (so not to hit their heads) to hold more books, stuffed animals, etc. Variety of ways to paint.

  • Belinda Elliott Belinda Elliott on Nov 07, 2014
    What about CD racks or book shelves ? Hubby says bird feeders or nests

  • Barb Regner Barb Regner on Nov 07, 2014
    I made stands for these and plant herbs in them

  • Carol T Carol T on Nov 07, 2014
    I use mine as a recipe file.

  • Liliana Wells Liliana Wells on Nov 07, 2014
    Planters would be great as well as organizers of small items, shadow box. There are so many uses. I like the idea of the cookbooks. But really there are so many good suggestions here. Good luck.

  • Carole Carole on Nov 07, 2014
    Make a rustic desk or table using the boxes to support the top instead of legs, then you,ve got a nice table plus storage too. By the way, I think they are wonderful, I would have bought them in a flash too!!!

  • Lisa B Lisa B on Nov 07, 2014
    Paint something pretty on them and sell or keep them for storage.

  • Dianne Dianne on Nov 07, 2014
    I have put legs on them and made standup planter boxes with a nice coat of paint....I have sold many. ...

  • Sharon Reynolds Sharon Reynolds on Nov 07, 2014
    well, it kinda depends on what kinda person u are...are u an artist?..upcycler?...logical and pragmatic?...i see them mounted horizontal on a wall,at different levels, painted of course, and used as shelves for large artwork that u have or have made, big family photographs, etc and the space of the drawer to hold mementos that are stuck in drawers somewhere else that u dont take out and enjoy....vacation mementos,things kids or grandkids made for u, just the little things that tend to get overlooked, but when u see them, brings up a great memory and a smile....

    • Christy Sudderth Christy Sudderth on Nov 07, 2014
      @Sharon Reynolds I'm definitely not an artist--wish I had that talent. Love the idea of using them for shelves for larger artwork though. Thanks so much for your input.

  • Paula Paula on Nov 07, 2014
    If the metal in them is something that can come out, you could hang the boxes on the wall where the inside bottom of the box is facing out and use them as shadow boxes by hanging several on a big wall.

  • Christine Turner Christine Turner on Nov 07, 2014
    I also think they would make great shelves -- mounted horizontally and veritically on the same wall. Vertically could hold a narrow vase for instance. You could also add eyescrews to bottoms after you hang them and use to hang jewelry. Good luck.

  • Jerri McClennen Jerri McClennen on Nov 07, 2014
    I would paint or stain them, use them in a bathroom to store lotions, soaps for guests. Use them on a table with mason jars in them holding flowers or candles.

  • Jdu294163 Jdu294163 on Nov 07, 2014
    They would make beautiful window boxes filled with greens for the holidays and tablescapes for holiday parties. They could be put on railings also. Have fun!

  • Cortney Cortney on Nov 07, 2014
    Planters. Defiantly planters.

  • Loretta Clark Loretta Clark on Nov 07, 2014
    After reading all these great suggestions, don't know if I should offer mine or not. What about a verticle garden. Do you have a wall outside? Herbs, cabbages, kale?

  • Brenna Morgan Brenna Morgan on Nov 07, 2014
    Votive candle holders! And you can put greens or flowers in between each candle holder for the holidays or season. I've seen such items sold in stores or antique malls for $30+

  • Lois Martin Lois Martin on Nov 07, 2014
    Send them to me.

  • Niki Hart Niki Hart on Nov 07, 2014
    If I had them I would make seasonal table arrangements with flowers and things, one for Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, Valentines, and on and on!

  • Sheila Carr Sheila Carr on Nov 07, 2014
    You could use them for window boxes to plant flowers in. :)

  • L Stone L Stone on Nov 07, 2014
    I have one that I use for organizing all my DVDs that are in paper envelopes...

  • Linda Linda on Nov 07, 2014
    I actually purchased boxes very similar to these to hold all my cd's. They fit perfectly. There are so so many different things you could do with these boxes. Wish I had some more! :)

  • Vpa525563 Vpa525563 on Nov 07, 2014
    You could use growing herbs

  • Barbara Barbara on Nov 07, 2014
    We use these old card catalog drawers to organize CD's, batteries, in the shop for hardware.

  • Christy Sudderth Christy Sudderth on Nov 07, 2014
    Thank you all so much for your suggestions. They are great ideas. This is the first time I have used this site and it's amazing. I have 5 so my try a little of all of the suggestions.

  • Karen Karen on Nov 07, 2014
    Christi- PERFECT! What a wonderful way to use them. I'm jealous of your find but tickled pink at how you will use them. Karen

  • Natzul Bianco Natzul Bianco on Nov 07, 2014
    I would use them as shelves i n the kitchen, bathroom or laundry, even painted for a kids room

  • Khonstanze Khonstanze on Nov 07, 2014
    I am a quilter so I could use them to store fat quarters in. Fat quarters are 1/4 yard pieces of fabric folded into squares about the same size as CD's.

  • Trish Davenport Trish Davenport on Nov 07, 2014
    Oh how I'd love these. I have a collection of tiny glass birds and would turn these into double shelves. What is the bottom would become the back and I could hide the metal parts with foam core. Painted different sherbet colors they would be lovely.

  • Jill Jill on Nov 07, 2014
    Window boxes for flowers!

  • Debra Wichmann Debra Wichmann on Nov 07, 2014
    Use in bathroom for extra TP storage. Perhaps add a 1x4 as a door to hide contents (remove bracket)

  • Marilyn Lestina Marilyn Lestina on Nov 07, 2014
    Would love to have them to plant my vegetable garden! Where I live I can't put a garden in the ground.

  • Dorothy Dorothy on Nov 07, 2014
    I do beading (weaving, stringing and loomwork) and NEVER have enough storage for all the beads plus findings and misc and thread/wire and tools. These would be great storage with goodies in ziplock bags.

  • You could build or buy a wooden grid and house them in a bookshelf, if it was deep enough and use them to file recipes or craft projects. Another idea use them to hold buttons, thread or material, if you sew.

  • Diane F Diane F on Nov 07, 2014
    herb gardens. put different types in each box. this will work well especially if you want to grow mints. mints have to be contained as they will spread rapidly.

  • Rusty Avery Rusty Avery on Nov 07, 2014
    Stack them screw to a wall in a random style as wall shelves. use as growing winter veggies in a window ( lettuce, spinach, etc.) , stand them on end together and make a small table. Paint them different colors. use in an entrance for cell phones, keys, or gloves and caps. the use's are endless. enjoy.

  • Chris Knutson Chris Knutson on Nov 07, 2014
    Fill with evergreens and cones...add tiny micro lights and use on tables fireplace mantels, etc. After the holidays fill with potpourri and lights. They are beautiful at night. I do this with all my wooden bowls and and antiques boxes. They also look great as gift boxes with red raffia at Christmas. Fill and enjoy!

  • Tess Tess on Nov 07, 2014
    i would love to have one of will be pretty for dining table decorations.

  • Liz Liz on Nov 07, 2014
    You can give them to me so you don't have to worry about what to do with them!!!

  • Susan Cryor Susan Cryor on Nov 07, 2014
    I totally agree with Liz, I will and am able to take some off your hands so you are not burdened with them! My gosh, they are quality made. Perfect for fairy gardens for children's hospital.....

  • California Sopés California Sopés on Nov 07, 2014
    Window box garden

  • Kate McComas Kate McComas on Nov 07, 2014
    I'd use them to hang recessed lights into that could be hung where-ever I might need a bit more light in an area... or as some spotlight lighting....

  • Cindy Cindy on Nov 07, 2014
    First, I would paint them all in bright different colors then use them as shelves, either hanging it with the opening facing out and putting things inside and on top or just face it inwards and just put things on top.

  • HiLda HiLda on Nov 07, 2014
    To put your spice.

  • Catherine S Catherine S on Nov 07, 2014
    Add moss and put in air plants. Attach to a wall, and care for the air plants as directed. Easy-peasy, and pretty!

  • SLKY222 SLKY222 on Nov 08, 2014
    SEND THEM TO ME !!!! Please

  • Cynthia Cynthia on Nov 08, 2014
    I see them attached together in a stair step affect and used as planters indoors or out

  • Doris Trombley Doris Trombley on Nov 08, 2014
    if you are a quilter, stash your fat quarters in them

  • Janet F Janet F on Nov 08, 2014
    I've been admiring the centerpiece boxes I've seen on Pinterest lately. They could work for that. Maybe stain them or paint them depending on your preference and then fill them with candles, pumpkins, vases, etc. Or send them to me!

  • Rebecca Van Campen Rebecca Van Campen on Nov 08, 2014
    All drawers look like shelves to me.

  • Nadine D Nadine D on Nov 08, 2014
    These are sorting boxes. The metal thingy both allows a slant of the cards to see them better, and allows you to have 70, 170, and various amounts of cards. You just slide that metal clamp up behind the cards. I remember using those boxes to sort book cards after the books had been checked out back in the day. Ah, alphabetization, I do miss thee! BTW they DO look like shelves. I have a sewing drawer that I think looks like a shelf, too.

  • Amy Hodgen Amy Hodgen on Nov 08, 2014
    I would attach them to your outdoor wall of your house and plant some vegetables in them. That way they would be out of the way of cats, mice etc. Something like this :

  • Patricia Howard Patricia Howard on Nov 08, 2014
    Would make cute hanging sideways for spice rack in the kitchen,

  • Jean M Jean M on Nov 08, 2014
    Go to pinterest. There's all kinds of decorative ideas for the boxes.

  • Terri boyd Terri boyd on Nov 08, 2014
    i would take the medal out and put a new one in and make some planters..And paint them if u want....

  • Merrilyn merkley Merrilyn merkley on Nov 08, 2014
    oh wow love them

  • Joanne B. Joanne B. on Nov 08, 2014
    I love these! I would use one as a 'runner' down the length of your dining table and fill with an assortment of silk ivy and then add seasonal silk flowers, candles, etc. Possibly stain it to give it a more rustic feel. What a find! I remember these from the olden days of card catalogs at the library and the Dewey Decimal System of book find!

  • L Stone L Stone on Nov 09, 2014
    Also could use to organize your 3x5 recipe cards...

  • Laurie Laurie on Nov 09, 2014
    yep check pinterest! Love those boxes!! That was a lucky find :o)

  • Bburnard Bburnard on Nov 09, 2014
    They could be stacked and angled for a wine rack!

  • Bernice H Bernice H on Nov 09, 2014
    OOOHHHH my! Go to Donna @FunkyJunk Interiors - Donna ...this is right up her alley!!!!!

  • Ann Ann on Nov 09, 2014
    Use one to make a fake succulent planter. Nestle a battery candle (or two or three). You could fill the bottom with floral foam, put Dollar Store gravel on top and arrange fake succulents on top. For Christmas put fake snow on top of floral foam, add candles and an assortment of silvery, glittery balls and snowflakes. Find jars that fit and put silverware and napkins (rolled) for a holiday buffet table. Find an assortment of jars and bottles that fit and add a single fake daisy or rose or lily to each for a pretty centerpiece. Dry brush with white or turquoise paint, put gravel on top of craft foam and add piles of seashells and pebbles and battery candles. Wait, one more...fill with pretty wrapped packages in several small sizes and tuck in holiday greens and maybe a snowman figurine.

  • Ann Ann on Nov 09, 2014
    Wrap empty cans in jute and hot glue on. Put them in box for your crafting tools. Scissors, rulers, pencils, paintbrushes, etc. Make one can into a pin cushion. You can carry the whole thing to where you are crafting.

  • Mary Tobey Mary Tobey on Nov 09, 2014
    Would they be wide enough for CD storage?

  • Adventures In Junking Adventures In Junking on Nov 09, 2014
    1) you could run a dowel between the handle and use it store rings of ribbon in your craft studio. 2) Hanging strawberry planters!!! (just be sure to put moss or burlap along the bottom to contain the soil 3) Window planters - paint them and plant with crocuses. Leave them outside in the cold for a bit, then bring them in in February and enjoy a very early spring on your windowsill. 4) make long Christmas centerpieces (see Tablescapes here and on Pinterest for ideas) and use them as hostess gifts over the holidays 5) I would put one away for a centerpiece for your Easter brunch table - bring it out in February and plant it with grass seed or Lily of the Valley. 6) love the veggie gardening idea above!! 7) whatever strikes your fancy - they are lovely and have unlimited potential!

  • Judy Judy on Nov 09, 2014
    I saw a post where sewing machine drawer was made into a train or truck for a child plus they have a storage area too.

  • Karen Karen on Nov 09, 2014
    What a find! Will be cute whatever you decide. Lots of good ideas. Pintrest is a good idea.

  • Patticakes Patticakes on Nov 10, 2014
    Any quilter would love them for "fat quarter" storage!

  • Karen Karen on Nov 11, 2014
    Screw them to outside walls or fencing and create a vertical garden :)

  • Keisha Keisha on Nov 12, 2014
    What a good score! I'm thinking planters boxes.

  • Sheila D Sheila D on Nov 14, 2014
    Christy, you could line them, add plants & mount them staggered, brick like on a garden fence or patio wall

  • Pagan Raven Pagan Raven on Nov 14, 2014
    Christy, you could send one or two to me, if you decide you have too many to bother with! ~.^

  • Chareene Chareene on Nov 15, 2014
    My sons use them for baseball cards or comic cards.

  • SindyBaron SindyBaron on Nov 15, 2014
    One thing you could do is measure the width of your bed. Go 2 to 3 feet above, screw into wall and fill as you feel. Books for awhile, fake succulents, then flowers for spring, maybe Christmas boughs in December. See where I'm goin' with this .

  • Lana Baker Lana Baker on Nov 15, 2014
    These would make wonderful toolboxes. Hook a shelf under your work table,, and set them on it, for easy access for your tools.

  • Sandi MacDougall Sandi MacDougall on Dec 15, 2014
    perfect Soap Molds

  • Joan Morris Joan Morris on Dec 15, 2014
    I would stack em and make shelving with them. You could line them up or stagger them. Many things are coming to mind now...

  • Sue Sue on Dec 15, 2014
    I would paint/stain them bring out when you need a box.. Take as housewarming gift etc..

  • Wanda Medlen Wanda Medlen on Dec 15, 2014
    Sort pictures for scrapbooking. what a wonderful find. I'm not lucky on that kind of finds.Use for silverware organizer, the uses are endless.

  • Christine Z Christine Z on Dec 15, 2014
    I actually am lucky enough to own an old library card catalog, with 36 drawers. I use them to store my utensils, as well as flatware, place mats & napkins (just roll them so they fit in the drawers. I like to store my large butcher knives in one of the drawers, too - I can pull out the entire drawer and select which one I want, without slicing up my fingers in the process! I'm sure you'll find a great use for those drawers/boxes!

  • Orchidmg Orchidmg on Dec 15, 2014
    If you can take the metal rack out of them. And stain them as you like. And with a drill, attach them to a wall, one above another as shelves. I can see them in a craft room. One could be use in the kitchen with spices above the stove. Or in a child's room and they can put their toys on them. A boy with their cars and trucks and action figures. A girl with figurines, small stuffed animals, lay small books on their sides. And if you use them as shelves, you don't have to put them evenly above each other.

  • Connie Connie on Dec 16, 2014
    I had a similar box and put photos in them, The Kids and grandkids love it. It is the first thing they grab and ask, "Grandma will you read these with me." and soon everyone is sitting on the floor and passing them around and talking about the memory that goes with the pic.

  • Sally fambro Sally fambro on Dec 16, 2014

  • Charlotte Belange Charlotte Belange on Dec 16, 2014
    Oh I would line them so water and dirt won't fall out then put live succulents. You can leave them out side from the last frost to the first one then bring them into house,basement, garage, Needless to say I love succulents. Char

  • Daphne Scott Daphne Scott on Dec 16, 2014
    make Christmas center pieces with tree boughs, pine cones, bows, candles, snowflakes, etc. Red, Greens and White!

  • Daphne Scott Daphne Scott on Dec 16, 2014
    painted and hung in graduated layers put in toiletries, extra tissues, or set on counter with wash clothes, towels soaps. Do the same in kitchen or bath or spice holders

  • MARY FISHER MARY FISHER on Dec 17, 2014
    They would be good to take out 'guts' and stain them, give as gifts or use in your storage area for small cans of paints, stains, etc. If you stain them for gifts you could stencil the words on each one, like RECEIPES, HOME, LOVE,, etc, do it on one side, someone could use at least one for something, sitting on a counter in kitchen, a bedroom, or bathroom

  • Mary Cordill Mary Cordill on Mar 19, 2015
    Would be great on the wall with space between for rubber stamp display. MJ Finds

  • Patti Patti on Mar 19, 2015
    Hi, If you like outdoor or even idoor plant window boxes, these woud be great. Cut to desired length, drill holes in bottom for drainage, add decorative trim, paint or stain and you will have gorgeous window boxes. They would also make great storage containers, cut to size, above your kitchen cabinets if you have that open space. Patti Ottawa, Ontario Canada

  • Bburnard Bburnard on Apr 12, 2015
    I'm using mine for genealogy family cards... perhaps a bit close to its original purpose, but I was desperate to get something physical from my computer files so I could share with family!

  • Sharon Reynolds Sharon Reynolds on Apr 13, 2015
    these are all great ideas...gut them definitely..great to do vertical for herbs or plants that will drip over the side...use and old ladder that opens and place them in between the rungs...get old pallet and nail them them to it...and I opt for COLOR!!!, if using inside to match/pop against your what u already have on the walls. and the options for u go on and on....would love to see what u decide and end up with...Good Luck!!!...

  • Angela Angela on Apr 18, 2015
    I would put flowers in them for beautiful planter boxes. Could sow lettuce, radishes or turnip seeds in them as well.

  • Deborah Deborah on Jun 21, 2015
    I would stagger and group then horizontally and vertically and use them as shelves, the bottom inside could easily be covered with some veneer.

  • Hayley Roberts Hayley Roberts on Jun 24, 2015
    I agree with dwalker33111, I too was thinking they could be used for shelving. It's what I'd probably use them for :)

  • Barb Barb on Jun 24, 2015
    i have something similar I used in my linen closet or under your sink if they will fit, to organize, medicines, bandages, hair ties, whatever you have, etcs..easy to pull out to find something.