Friday, April 1, 2011

The Milk Box

This past week has been full of silly little side projects as I prep for the warmer weather - it is going to get warmer, right? One of the biggest projects has been to clean up the yard. There were piles of wood chips from splitting logs to be picked up, gigantic tarps to be folded, random bits of garbage to be collected, mulch to be raked, straw to be piled... it was neverending. The biggest eyesore in my opinion was the large red cooler that we keep by our front gate for the milk man's deliveries. Ick. It's bright, it's plastic and it's just sitting there. It certainly doesn't feel like it belongs in my yard.

Earlier this year I had garbage picked some old pallets from an industrial complex, one of which was a beautifully aged oak pallet. I wish I had photographs of the before, because it certainly wasn't anything special to the average eye.

We had decided not to use the pallets for potato planters as originally planned because we don't know what they've come in contact with and I run a strict organic regimen around this place, so after dismantling it and leaving it in a pile all winter it was looking pretty junky itself. It was time for the pallet to be repurposed. Originally I had planned for the pallet to become part of the chicken coop, but the wood was so old and perfectly aged I didn't really want to waste it on poultry - though I'm sure they'd appreciate it's aesthetic value... Then I spotted it. I had the ugly cooler sitting less than ten feet from the pallet wood. It was like fate. Seriously.

It only took me about an hour and a half, to turn the ugly old pallet bits into a box  to keep the ugly milk cooler in. The constructed box - crate? - is pictured below, and other than stenciling [or woodburning?] the word "MILK" on the front, I'm finished and happy with it.


Do you have any repurposed objects around your yard or house? Did you come up with the design yourself, or use a tutorial?


  1. Love it! What a fantastic solution. We've been repurposing like crazy around this old homestead we bought. I was disheartened by the amount of STUFF that was on our property when we bought it a few years ago, but since then we've used tin roofing panels for temporary garden fencing; scrap wood for a new corral gate, and one of the old refrigerators will become paint and solvent winter-safe storage. I'm looking at all the junk with new eyes. :)

  2. @Teri @ Love From the Farm
    I know how that goes. I've been using the random stuff here to build and rebuild things for months now. When we moved in, the whole west side of the barn was covered in galvanized metal panels. It was so ugly! I pulled them down and underneath was some beautiful wood siding. I'm going to use them for roofs on chicken runs and movable sheep shelters. I'm convinced that half of modern homesteading is learning to repurpose things rather than throwing them out. It's sort of a post-dustbowl mentality I guess.