Do It Yourself: Make Your Own Large Wooden Toy Box

A craft project guide to how to make large wooden toy boxes. Information on materials, procedure and design.

There are several ways to go about making a toy box. It depends on your skill and woodworking equipment. You could incorporate some fancy techniques with some woodworking equipment.

We can still build a very nice toy box with only some basic tools. A few things to consider when doing a project of this type is the size, what is the finished look that you would like to have, the possibilities are endless. You may also consider if you want it to be stationary or be able to roll it around. You could also embellish the box top.

I am going to describe how to make a thirty-six by twenty-four by twenty-four inch toy box with four ball shaped finials. I want it to have a cushioned top that can also be used to sit on. It is going to have primer applied then paint a race car and track on the front. There are several options for doing this. Get a picture and project it, then simply follow the outline and detail, apply the race car colors in the lines as you see it. Another option is to take your picture to a copy shop then trace it. If you do not feel comfortable with painting decoupage is a great option. Choose colors for your decor or theme, then simply decoupage an image on to the box. To do this procedure, purchase the decoupage medium and an image. Apply the medium then place the image. Go back and apply more of the medium over the image. It will dry clear and look great.

When you have decided on a design for the box there are some items you will need from the home store. Select the plywood, for small projects like this I like the wood that is already finished. They can even cut the pieces for you if you do not have the tools. Other items needed are wood glue, finishing nails, spackle, primer, decorative hinges, and paint. If you want to do the cushioned top you will also need wood trim, staple gun, batting, foam pad. If you want to further embellish with decoupage, you will need the medium and an image. To hand paint an image you will need an assortment of paint colors. If you choose to do the foam top then purchase enough material to cover the thickness of the foam thickness that you purchase plus another couple of inches to pull in the back. Choose fabric that will compliment your theme or decor.

To assemble the box you may need some help. If help is not available try using a vise or clamps. It you did not have the wood cut at the home store then measure and cut the pieces. You should have four pieces thirty-six by twenty-four and two pieces twenty-four by twenty-four; these are the two end pieces. Form the rectangle by standing one of thirty-six inch boards on its side then apply glue to the edge of the twenty-four inch piece. Press the glued edge to the inside edge of the thirty-six-inch piece. Nail, countersink then spackle the box. Follow this procedure for the other sides. You should now have the rectangle frame complete. With the frame complete you can glue and nail the floor. For further strength, you could add L-Brackets to the corners.

Drill a small pilot hole for the finials. Make sure that they are far enough in so that they do not extend past the edge of the box. From the inside of the box simply screw them on. If you do not want a cushioned top then you can drill pilot holes for the hinges. I would place the hinges about twelve inches in from the sides. At this point you can also add a small handle to the front center of the box top using the same procedure.

For a cushioned top take the plywood and do make all your pilot holes. Do not attach the hardware yet. Take the fabric and lay it on the workbench with the wrong side facing up. Lay the batting followed by the foam padding. Take the plywood and place on top of the foam padding. Make sure everything is straight. An extra pair of hands would be helpful here.

Start this procedure by stapling four points first. You want to start in the middle pull then staple go to the opposite side pull and staple, then pull and staple the middle of the two ends. Follow this procedure all the way around, staple then go to the opposite side. The staples should be about an inch in. Trim the excess material. You can add wood trim to hide the raw edges. Measure again twelve inches from either side, this should be where your pilot holes are. Make a small hold in the material then screw the hinges and handle. The box is ready to primer and paint.

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