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One of the numerous things that got broken on the move from Boston to San Jose was my large wine bottle cube, which I acquired from my lovely co-blogger when she headed south. Sad. Since I didn’t have the counter space to house a new wine cube, I started looking for wine cabinets. But those suckers are expensive. I found a beautiful one at Target for $120…but it didn’t really match my decor. In fact, nothing I found matched the awesome turquoise I painted my kitchen table legs, other than white. But then none of those were set up higher on legs so I could put something underneath it, like the cat bowls, to keep them out of the way.

So, of course, I decided I could just make my own. Heck, it couldn’t be that hard. And I’d always wanted to do something with those crates I’d seen at Michael’s, the ones people make like coffee tables and such out of. To the magical land of Home Depot I went! And Lowe’s. It took me a couple of trips to figure out what I wanted to do and how to do it…

But it eventually came to me, the crisscrossing of dowels to make an “X” to store the bottles, and making upside down “T’s” to hold the stemware. I used the dowels because I didn’t imagine I’d be able to figure out how to put two solid pieces of wood together in the shape of an X to perfectly fit inside the crate, and the T’s with small pieces of wood because I couldn’t find a stemware holder that would fit inside the narrow crate, and they were too expensive for the number of glasses you can store anyways.

It finally came together.

Wine Cabinet

And I love it. I spent a little more than I had anticipated, but the cost of the saw can be absorbed into other projects, just like the staple gun from before. And I did actually use a few coupons, so I would estimate closer to $60, which is half the price of the brand new cabinet I saw at Target, and still less than the used ones I found on Craigslist. Win.

You’ll need:
2 crates (Home Depot for $9.99 or Michael’s for $13.99 each)
4 round dowels, 1/2″X48″ (Lowe’s, $1.68 each)
2 square dowels, 1/2″X36″ (Home Depot, $1.72 each)
1 thin board, 1.5″X48″ (Home Depot, $2.52)
4 table legs, 15 1/4″ (Lowe’s, $5.48 each)
4 top plates (Lowe’s, $1.68 each)
1 piece of plywood, 18″X9.75″ (Lowe’s, $6.08)
Wood Glue
Small Coping Saw (Lowe’s, $7.80)
Staple Gun
Drill or Screwdriver and Screws

Step One: Secure the crates on top of each other. I just did this with the staple gun.

photo 2 (15)

Step Two: Measure and cut the round dowels to size, then place them one by one, alternating directions, from the back to the front of the bottom crate. Secure each end with a little wood glue as you go, just to make sure they don’t go anywhere. I ended up using only 7 pieces, spaced about an inch apart.

Wine Cabinet

Step Three: Decide where you want to place the dowels and wood pieces for the stemware rack and how many rows will fit. For me that was 4 rows, 5 sets of place holders. I measured by laying down the cabinet and standing up wine glasses on the back, spaced apart using the dowel.

Wine Cabinet

Note: My cabinet is already painted because making wooden T’s was my second idea. My first was a little too complicated to explain, so let’s just stick with it didn’t work. I went back to the drawing board. And this time it stuck.

Ok. Measure and cut to size. Then secure a dowel to the center of each thin board using wood glue, and a staple to hold it in place.

Wine Cabinet

I rifled through my bag o’ nails to find screws long enough, and, after double checking my measurements for placement, I screwed each upside down “T” to the top of the crate with a screw in front and one in back. While this little guy helped:

photo 4 (11)

Well, mine have a few extra holes up top, because my double checking didn’t pan out so well. So, I left one row to specifically hold my champagne flutes (read: was too small for anything else), and I just unscrewed and moved the outer “T’s” a little, to accommodate my larger wine and margarita glasses.

Step Four: Paint. I spray painted the inside to match my kitchen table legs (it’s called “Seaside”) and the outside white to match my kitchen appliances and walls. I spray painted the legs white as well, before screwing into the crates. And that piece of plywood: there are spaces in between the slats of the bottom of the crates, so some of the screws for the table leg top plates would be screwed into nothing, they landed right in those spaces. I needed something to make the bottom solid, which is why I found the smallest, cheapest piece of plywood I could that would fit and had it cut to size.

Side note: My special friend at Lowe’s got my measurements off by an inch somehow, but I made it work.

Anywho, I painted the topside turquoise, the side that would be seen through the slats, and I painted the bottom side white.

Step Five: Place the plywood on the bottom of the crate and arrange the top plates, screwing them into the crates through the plywood.

photo (6)

Then screw in the table legs.


Wine Cabinet

Total Spent: $75.18 (including the saw, not including coupons)

But I think the best part is just having a piece of furniture that I built myself, something that I see everyday and that is totally functional. I think I’m addicted to this DIY thing.

I might just have to bring you something else next week!


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