Wooden berry boxes used to be plentiful wherever produce was sold and retailers would practically pay you to haul them off. More and more cardboard is being used to take the place of these quaint wooden crates. While they may be more efficient they lack the country charm, or long lasting sturdiness of a wooden slat berry box. You can make your own berry boxes, complete with retro-styled paper labels, and get most of your materials for free.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Wooden pallets
- Pry bar
- Table saw
- Air stapler
- Fruit label images
- Spray glue
Locate wooden pallets. These can be found behind retail stores, especially grocery stores. You will need one each of two kinds. Find one that has thin 1/4-inch thick cross slats and at least one that features heavier hardwood slats 5/8-to-3/4 inches thick. Ask before carting them off, as many stores recycle their pallets and consider this stealing if you don't ask first.
Tear your pallets down using a hammer and pry bar. Set the thick runner pieces aside and remove all nails and staples from the slat pieces. Choose two thick slats that have at least one good edge, and are at least 5-inches wide.
Cut two ends for your berry box from the thick slats you chose on the table saw, 5-inches wide by 16-inches long. Cut rounded corners on all four corners of each piece. Use a penny to mark the curve and make the cut with a jigsaw.
Cut three thin slats 5-inches wide by 18-inches long. Cut six slats 1 1/2-inches wide by 18-inches long. Use an air stapler to attach the wide slats between the two end pieces. Space them evenly with 1/4-inch gaps between. Staple through the slats into one narrow 16-inch edge of each end to form the bottom of the crate. Use three 3/4-inch staples in each piece.
Staple three narrow slats in the same fashion between the narrow ends of the end pieces to form sides.
Find an image of an old fruit label. You can colour copy these from existing berry boxes, or purchase a set of advertising clip art on a CD that includes fruit-crate labels. These are available from various online book sellers. Use a colour computer printer, or scanner (in the case of an existing crate) to print an image of the label of your choice about 4-inches high, by 12-inches long on regular paper.
Cut the printed label out to remove any plain paper around the edges.Spray glue to the back of the label and press it to one end of the berry box with spray adhesive.
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