My neighbor's mother used milk crates to form all her furniture. Yep, those ugly blue crates. From them, she made a full size bed. She just laid them out evenly and put the top mattress on top. She used them to make a desk top, TV stand, end tables. She also used the crates that 2 liter pop bottles came in and I think she found some at garage sales.
It takes a lot but I have heard also of college kids using them. She moved here from out of state, it was a cheap way to furnish her apartment. I guess some will do almost anything to make do. Sometimes anything is worth a try. These are also available in stores but they may not be as sturdy.
Ariela from FL
Now that is frugal! They seem to be very sturdy and last a long time, so why not? I would have to embellish a little bit and cover the end tables with fabric, and maybe a bedskirt to cover the crates that she built for her bed; old sheets bought from garage sales would work and be cheaper than fabric.
When I was in graduate school, I made a "dresser" out of crates. I took six crates, stacked three on three, with the opening facing out. Then, I draped a piece of cloth over the front, with an overlapping slit in the center. The cloth was held in place by a piece of wood (recycled from an assemble-it-yourself desk), which also served as the dresser top. I stacked folded sweaters, jeans, etc. in the crates. It worked out pretty well!
Referring back to my top post.. I forgot to mention that she laid the ones on the length side of her bed .. sideways.. with the open side outwards.. so she could store things in them.. clothes etc. When she moved I'm telling you she had a truck load of crates lol the upside is
that its not an issue if you have no help.. the crates are light weight, but sturdy I was very surprised at what her her furniture was made up of... I was like... whaaaaat? And asked to see lol :)
By using crates for all your furniture, you might have a truckload of crates when moving, but can PACK ITEMS INSIDE the crates!
By Mary (Guest Post) 12/05/2006
Why not? pretty darn cool! And you can dress them up as much as you want or leave exposed if you want to have a fun & funky look!
WHAT A COOL IDEA
I KNOW I WOULD EVER HAVE THOUGHT OF THIS
By Susabelle (Guest Post) 12/11/2006
Since no one else has, I will point out that this is THEFT. Those crates belong to the dairy, they are NOT your property and they shouldn't be used as if they were.
Did it ever occur to any of you that the reason we pay $3 a gallon for milk is because the dairies have to keep replacing the crates from people stealing them from the back of the store?
Editor's Note: These crates are available at many stores (not the real milk crates but like them.) We don't condone or encourage theft.
You are correct. But as I pointed out in my top post the crates ARE available in stores. This lady may very well have purchaced her crates. I in no way meant to encourage theft. However she did get some at garage sales. People collect crazy things.. there is a man near us who has the side of his barn covered with road signs.. STOP-YIELD- N0-J-WALKING.. you name it.. yet the county hasnt stopped him... yes thats theft. What ever. I dont make the news or the things we post here.. I just share it lol :)
By Lynda (Guest Post) 12/11/2006
Having collected curbside for so many people in crises, I have to say that milk crates are seldom there, especially in quantity, so they must have come from the backs of stores. Most of those here are in stacks against the rear brick walls, obviously NOT being tossed.
I strictly avoid going to the backs of stores anymore, yet, one person I know found a lot of opened/tossed but NEW cellphones and parts
being tossed into a dumpster, collected the ones he could reach and sold them to whomever he met. However, he said he believed after thinking about it
all later that the forms he found in each one was the fault of the employee who SHOULD have filled them out for a manufacturer's refund and did not, all to the "finder's" advantage.
Then again, folks need to be reminded that dumpsters are OFTEN rented by the property owners, not necessarily furnished by the local city. One couple I knew dumped limbs into a dumpster out in the middle of no where, only to be arrested because they didn't walk to the backside and notice that it was State property/No Dumping. It was a State Jail Felony for them both!!
I don't know of ANY dumpsters that are open to the public for dumping, but those that are spilling over with merchandise that is recyclable should be available for anyone who can do something with it rather than supply the landfill, in my opinion, but with the owner's permission, which is often easy to get, and certainly a reasonable courtesy.
Once in a vacant country field, I saw shiny things from a distance and followed the shine until I came upon a huge stack of chrome clothing racks from someone having dumped them. It took a while to see how they worked, but I was able to find two that weren't rusty and used them for my garage sale (proceeds to folks in crises). I could have been accused of having dumped them, I realized later, and even though out in the country, I tried to avoid risky found items.
Now I must live with what I have not been able to find receipients for, seldom knowing who needs what, and it has worked out to truly clutter my home, along with things others stored here but never returned to get. I have given to charity most of it, and what remains that I found I have been using in whatever way is useful, giving when I learn of a need.
Along with my finds, I have building materials that have helped occasionally to refurbish damage that I have in my older home. It has become my only supply closet.
Recently some elderly person passed away, all their things placed for alley pick-up. In clear plastic sacks were huge supplies of toilet paper, kitchen wraps, and unopened/unexpired food, along with a few garage items, a walking sprinkler exactly like the one I have that broke, and items only I might recognize. I don't frequent alleys, but I had an occasion to go down that one this time. It was such
a blessing to find new things that someone else wasted. This is a God-send for us. Normally as I drove somewhere, the curbside was my only "shopping" lane, never into sacks unless
I can clearly know what's in them and they are new. Now things have gotten so high that I have little gas money to go anywhere. So, I make do with what I have left and am "struggling just fine, thank you." LOL
Many families have benefitted from the waste of others, if only someone will swallow their pride, take the time to pick them up and deliver the merchandise. Our rich nation is also capable of doing better at that, but often live too fast to help others. It isn't God's plan to waste. He loves a frugal
life and wise steward of the money that He helps us to receive because He says that all money belongs to Him. God bless you all. : )
By guest (Guest Post) 01/04/2008
I have milk crate copies, purchased from a store, and used four of them to make a game shelving unit. I cut old cardboard boxes (from when I moved) and placed them in the sides - inside and out. Then I took contact paper and covered the outsides and insides. By 'taping' four of them together with the contact paper, I created a boxed unit to put my children's board games in. You cannot tell that it is made with plastic crates and it was cheaper than a unit found at a store. It is also very sturdy and I did not have to use any hardware.
By Emma-Lee (Guest Post) 04/30/2008
I wanted to know are there actual stores that sell standard milk crates and how much. I have a ton my boy friend hates them but they are just so cool and useful.
By Dorothy (Guest Post) 05/19/2008
When we were on vacation, we came across lots of milk crates being sold at a thrift store. I bought one that said 'Faith Dairy' on it. It was the only one w/that name on it. When I got home and 'googled' that name, I found out that particular company had closed. It was a small family-operated company. So, I don't feel bad about owning that one; in fact, it's pretty Cool! I like to load it up with folded Beach Towels and take it to camp.
The milk crates one can buy are generally not as heavy-duty as the kind the dairies use.