Rustic Wine Crate with Rope Handles

A friend gave me some magazines the other day and she put them all in a new yellow pine wine crate. I was overjoyed when she said I could keep the crate. I immediately had visions of staining it to create a rustic display box for magazines or other décor items.


  • Wine crate or wooden box
  • Dark brown stain
  • Paint Brush
  • Paper towels
  • Damp rag
  • Rubber gloves
  • Medium Grit (100 grit) sandpaper
  • Sisal Rope
  • Scissors
  • Drill w/ bits


1. Start by cleaning off your crate with a damp rag. Then brush the stain on and let it sit for a minute.

2. Wipe the stain off with paper towels.

Add a second coat if you want your crate darker. Allow it to dry thoroughly. It might take several hours or overnight.

3. Sand any words and printing on your crate until you start to see some of the wood coming through. Be careful not to sand too deep and expose the bare wood.

4. Wipe off the crate. Mark the location you want your handle to be on the sides of the crate. Be sure to measure the same distances from the top and edges on both sides.

5. Choose a drill bit slightly larger than your rope. Drill holes at your marks.

6. Insert one side of the rope through the hole.

7. Tie a double knot inside the crate to keep the rope from slipping back through.

8. Determine how long a rope handle you want and tie a single knot in the middle of the handle.

9. Feed the other end of your rope through the other hole and tie another double knot on the inside of the crate.

10. Fray the edges of your rope by untwisting them.

11. Fill your crate with magazines, blankets, or décor goodies and display it!

Easy tutorial right? How many of you are running to your local wine shop and begging for wine crates now?

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You sure made that crate look stylish. I love it. Every handy girl would love this project. I have a metal magazine rack that the magazines stand on their sides and end up rolling to the side. I think I want to one similar to yours and it will hide most of the magazines while looking great. Thanks for sharing. Hope your ear is getting better as the days go by.

guess I need to start buying my wine by the crate… my hubby would be proud of me…..however, when he saw the cute magazine box I made from all my wine drinking I don’t see how he could be mad….. Good job with you wine crate.

UGH! I just passed one up the other day! I thought to myself,”Hmmm, pretty cool, but what would I do with it?” Dang.

I love it! This is a fantastic project, and I really appreciate your adding such great step-by-step detail and photos. Also, the photo of the piece next to the couch is perfect. Your staining to match the decor was brilliant. I can’t wait to share it!