How to Make a Flower Basket Tote
Learn how to make a simple wooden crate that doubles as a fun twist on a traditional basket.
If you like to think green, chances are you’ve got a pretty decent stockpile of reusable grocery bags and shopping totes in your house. While those bags are perfect for bringing home the goods from your weekly farmers' market visit, they’re not as great for carrying small potted flowers and plants. What’s the solution? A small wooden flower tote.
This simple wooden crate features holes on either end that allow you to switch out the handle material depending on the season or hauling need. The sturdiness of the tote keeps your plants from sliding around a grocery bag so you can transport them home to your garden safe and sound. I take my tote with me when I pay a visit to Detroit-based florist and flower truck operator Pot & Box - it’s perfect for carefully carrying small succulent pots right next to larger plants and even a wrapped bouquet.
- table saw
- hole saw - 1"
- sanding block
- 2 pieces of craft board - ⅜x6x36
- 1 piece of pine - 1x8x4
- jute roping
- nylon knotting cord
- weather strip nails - size ¾x17
- wood glue
To get your basket tote started you’ll need to measure and cut your wood to size. You’ll need five pieces total: One tote bottom from the piece of pine (10.75” wide, 7.25” tall), and from the craft board two long tote sides (11.5” wide, 5.5” tall), and two short tote sides (7.25” wide, 5.5” tall). Sand any rough spots on the wood.
You’ll create a hole in each of the short ends of the tote for the handle. Find the center of the short piece and make a mark. From the top of this piece, measure down ½” inch to make your drill mark. Repeat for the other short side. With the hole saw, cut out a 1” hole. Repeat for the other short side.
With your wood cut, you’ll want to mark and pre-drill some starter holes on the two long side pieces. This will help you assemble the tote. Using your cut pieces as your guide, place the one long side and short side piece upright against the bottom and mark the intersections with a pencil. Repeat for the other long side. Drill a starter hole every 1” within the marked guides you created.
To assemble the tote, apply a thin layer of wood glue to one edge of the bottom piece’s long side. Insert a nail in each hole and tap into place with your hammer. Turn over and repeat with the other long side.
Using the same method of assembly as shown above, attach the short side pieces to the box. Let the glue dry completely before painting the tote.
With your tote painted (I used HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams in Majolica Green), it’s time to create a handle for your tote. You can make your handle a custom size if you like; for my tote I cut a 30-inch length of jute. Fold up about 3” of the jute end. Wrap nylon knotting cord around the rope’s end and the handle itself 10 times, tying the nylon ends together. Trim the excess nylon. Repeat for the other end of the rope.
When the handle is tied into place, your basket tote is ready for your next shopping adventure.