DIY Industrial Table With Storage Made From a Shipping Crate

Brian McKnight
by Brian McKnight
2 Materials
2 Hours

I recently redid my bathroom, and one of the vanity tops was shipped in a wooden shipping crate. At first I was just going to get rid of it, but the wood was in good condition so I figured I would make something useful out of it. I needed some extra storage in my new shop, and I figured this would make the perfect piece. I decided to leave the outside as is, I liked the aesthetic, so I just needed to properly line it and attach a few legs to make my storage table. Follow along with me to create your own in five simple steps.

Shipping Crate

Tools and Materials

  • Large shipping crate
  • Lumber (this is to line the box but won’t be seen, the size and wood type here is up to you)
  • Tape measure
  • Miter saw
  • Table saw
  • Aromatic cedar
  • Wood glue
  • Nail gun
  • Nails
  • Hand planer
  • Hinges
  • Hydraulic hinge
  • Clasp
  • Pin legs
Line the Box

I wanted to make sure that the box was properly sealed from the inside, as I was planning on using it for storage. I started by lining it with pine. The pieces don’t have to line up perfectly here, but don’t leave two much space between the pieces of pine. 


I measured the box and cut the pine to size. 


I glued and nailed each piece into place until I had fully lined the box. Don’t forget to line up the sides as well.

Line the Box

Line with Cedar

Then I added another layer using aromatic cedar floor planks. Aromatic cedar is great for products that will be inside, away from the elements. This wood is great for storing fabric material, which served my purpose well as I was planning on storing blankets in it once I finished it. As these were floor planks, they had tongue and groove cut into their sides already, making it easy to slide them together to fit snugly. 

Line the Sides

As with the pine, I glued and nailed each piece in place until I had fully lined the box. With the cedar I wanted a more airtight lining, so I made sure that the pieces I had to cut for the corners sat snugly up against the corner. 


I had just added two layers of wood inside the box, and now the top edges of the box were no longer even, so I had to plane. Using a hand planer I planed the entire top edge of the box. This part can feel a bit tedious but it’s important if you want the lid to sit properly on the box. 

Add Hinges
Add Hinges

I added a hinge all along the top of the box. This would make it easy for me to open and close the box without needing to exert myself too much.

Hydraulic Hinge

Then I added a hydraulic hinge to each side so I wouldn’t have to worry about the lid collapsing on me when I was pulling something out of the box. If you don’t have these that’s fine, you’ll just have to hold the lid up yourself whenever you want to get something from the box.

Box with a Hinged Lid

Add Clasps
Add Clasps

For extra security I added a few clasps to the box. This made it easy to keep it tightly closed, even if the items in it were pushing up against the top a bit, as often happens with blankets. 

Add Legs
Add Legs

I wanted to stick to the more industrial look that the markings on the box led to the table, so I decided to go with metal pin legs. These are easy to find and really add to the overall look of the piece. I screwed one onto each corner of the bottom of the box and voila, I had created a table!

DIY Industrial Table with Storage

I love being able to take something that would normally be thrown in the trash heap and turning it into something new and useful! What have you upcycled lately? Let me know in the comments below.

Resources for this project:
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Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
  2 questions
  • Pam-ella Pam-ella on May 08, 2020

    Do you think it would be strong enough to sit on, with the pin legs? I love what you did!

  • Pam Galicki Pam Galicki on May 09, 2020

    Why not line with just the cedar? Why’d you line with pine first? Seems like the extra weight is unnecessary.

Join the conversation
2 of 9 comments
  • Patty LeVasseur Patty LeVasseur on May 09, 2020

    the best part... no buying a casket lololol the smell of a decaying corpse is well hidden by red cedar;];];]] JOKING!!!!!!!!!!!! AWESOME JOB SERIOUSLY!!!!! very universal for anything;];];]

  • Jamie Tyler Smith Jamie Tyler Smith on May 19, 2020

    beautiful! I wish everything was shipped in crates like that! CRAFT ON!