How To — Milk Crate Storage Table


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Krrb — How To — Milk Crate Storage Table

Recently, my copy of Guerilla Furniture Design by maker Will Holman arrived and I knew that I had to get to work. If you have yet to get a copy, this book is all about finding salvaged, or otherwise deemed trash, materials and creating beautiful modern furniture and accents. And if you know me, you know this speaks to my aesthetic. Flipping through the book, I came across the instructions for a Milk Crate Credenza. However since I’m short on space and need a side table, I came up with my own version of this project instead. The result is a gorgeous vertical storage solution that was inexpensive and truly showcases the intricate grid structure of the milk crates. For more information on how I put together the Milk Crate Storage Table out of found materials and just a few tools, keep reading for the step-by-step tutorial.

What You’ll Need

  • Plastic Milk Crates
  • Plywood
  • PVC Plug/Wood Dowel/Rubber Feet
  • Zip Ties
  • Wood Screws
  • Wood Stain
  • Stain Sealer
  • Coarse-grain/Fine-grain Sandpaper
  • Drill
  • Level
  • Chalk/Pencil
  • Step One

    Krrb — How To — Milk Crate Storage Table

    This particular project calls for 2 wood slabs that cover the bottom of the milk crates completely. Luckily, I was able to find a large enough piece of plywood in the 70% off pile at my local home improvement store. I had it cut to size and began sanding it down, rounding off any sharp corners. If you have a trim router in your tool shed, this is your opportunity to add a cool decorative edge. After sanding, comes staining. This time, I went with a dark walnut color that pairs perfectly with the black milk crates I already had. To protect your finish, be sure to seal your stain.

    Step Two

    Krrb — How To — Milk Crate Storage Table

    Next comes attaching the hardware. Carefully mark with chalk where the plywood will sit on the milk crate and screw them together using wood screws, pre-drilling where necessary. With this particular milk crate there was a few centimeters of empty space between the surfaces, so I added a wood shim to help bridge the gap.

    Adding wooden legs to the bottom is optional, however I recommend adding something to give it height. Rolling casters come in all sizes and can easily be screwed into place. I decided to go with an adjustable dowel leg for flexibility on uneven surfaces. To construct these legs, you’ll need a PVC Plug (spray painted black to match), rubber tips, and 4 wood dowels cut down to size. Start by supergluing the wood dowels into the open end of the PVC Plug. Once that is secure, drill holes into the 4 corners of the bottom plywood piece and screw in the PVC plugs. Once the dowels are poking through to the bottom, superglue the rubber tips on. Adjust the legs height as needed, by screwing or unscrewing the PVC Plugs until the table is level.

    Step Three


    Finally, it’s time to connect the milk crates together. Stack the milk crates on top of each other, so that they open towards each other. Use heavy duty black zip ties to sew the back of the milk crates together. This creates a flexible, non-permanent hinge that you can use to open and close the storage area.

    Step Four

    Krrb — How To — Milk Crate Storage Table

    After a quick dusting, you’re all set to start using this unique piece. Just open the milk crate to add in items for storage: record albums, blankets, and even clothing! Close it and use the table top to stack books and other trinkets. This project just goes to show, one man’s junk is another man’s treasure.

    Are you a fan of Guerilla Furniture Design? Would you make this Milk Crate Storage Table?

    • HomeJelly

      Right on…Swiffer wasn’t around in “the day”. I think one of those hand-held bad-boys’ll work great for weekly/bi-monthly dusting. Thanks for the suggestion!

    • Thank you! I found that using a Swiffer Duster helped snag all the stray saw dust that had accumulated on the ridges really quickly.

    • HomeJelly

      Love this! I used milk crates as a side table in college, but never thought to put a wooden top on it…brilliant. I do have one question, though…the one thing that got a bit annoying with my crates was the dust that collected on all the ridges. Any thoughts as to how to remedy this? Thanks so much for the great post!