DIY Storage Chest


My husband was in dire need of a storage solution for his 5.11 and Maxpedition backpacks. For those who have no clue to what they are, think Military Tactical bags however, in an array of sizes. These bags have been sitting on the bottom of our closet floor, essentially taking up the whole space forever. He has a different bag size for all needs, but when not in use, they need a better spot to go. We decided to make a Storage Chest that would fit into part of the bottom of the closet, however if taken out still looks great and could be its own furniture piece!

Due to the items that this chest is holding, I went with more of a military style look. However you can paint it absolutely anything you want. Our daughter saw the finished product and asked for a purple one (to match her room) to go in her own closet.

For this project I used all scrap pieces that were laying around. I had actually made a Freestanding Wine Cooler cabinet for my mother a while back but due to downsizing she couldn’t use it anymore. We took that apart and used about 3/4 of the wood from that to build this cabinet. The only things we however did need to buy were hinges and paint.

Tools you Need:









Finish Nail Gun












Measuring Tape



Safety Glasses






Paint Brush



Shop Towels


Materials Needed for this Box

Wood – Determine the size that you are making the box so that you know how much lumber you need

Hinges – 2 are needed

Rope for the handles

Paint (TIP: One sample container of the BEHR Marquee paint from Home Depot will be more than enough)


Wood Glue

Steps to Building the Chest

1. First of all, you need to determine the size for your chest. However if you aren’t sure what to do, think of the items going into it and where it is going. For example – For me the size was determined by two factors. The length and width were determined by my closet size (where its going). Then the height was determined by what the chest is going to be used for. In this case, the height was determined by the height of the backpacks.

2. Once you know your height you can cut your boards for the base down to size.

3. Next  you need to attach the sides and the bottom together using finishing nails, but don’t forget the wood glue too!

4. Now its time for the top. For myself, I had to make it using 2 pieces of wood which will probably be the case for you all too unless you purchase a large piece of hobby wood pine.

5. Finally it is time to decorate! Decide on how you want it to look! Stain the top of the chest to the colour you want (We used Dark Walnut) and also paint the exterior the colour you chose

6. When the paint and stain have dried you can attach the hinges and do any other details you chose. For our chest it involved painting on the star, and adding rope handles.

7. One thing I also decided to add at the end was furniture pads to the bottom so it would not scratch my hardwood floors. It is also a great idea to put them in between the chest lid and the base to stop it from making a large bang when it closed.


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