Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Crate Seats

While surfing around some teachers' message boards this summer, I saw a pic. someone posted of an adorable seat they made from a regular old file crate.  Of course, I thought it was the cutest thing ever, and decided i just had to make some for my classroom.  Six $3 crates...


and a yard of half-price fabric later...


here is the final product.  

They were super easy to make, albeit a bit time-consuming.  We got some leftover plywood from my parents' addition/renovation, and Stephen cut it to fit inside the lip of the crates (it doesn't seem like it would be very sturdy, but I was very pleasantly surprised!)  I covered the plywood with some batting and fabric (lots of staples in each), and that was it!  I still need to glue on a loop of ribbon to make it easier to pop open the "lid", but it's easy enough to take off the top without it for now. 


 

Not so attractive from the bottom side, but luckily that part is hidden!  I haven't decided for sure how I will use them in my room.  I have tossed around ideas of using them at the listening center (with the listening books & tapes stored inside), at the computers, and around the small group reading table.  For now, they are living at the reading table.  



We will see how they work there in a month or so when we start reading groups.  I still think they are the cutest (and easiest) project... and so useful for storage, too!

Happy first day of school!


50 comments:

  1. That's perfect! They came out so cute and colorful! Good idea.

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  2. Great idea. I just may have to make some, just to have at home for my grandchildren. Thanks for sharing.

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  3. Super cute! My hubby uses crates for storage, but I may see if he can spare one or two...or six!

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  4. Great idea! Love the fabrics you picked!

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  5. Very cute idea! I love this! Would you mind sharing the dimensions of the plywood top? I have never been that great at measuring!

    Cari
    http://sturchstars.blogspot.com
    http://technologyinhighheels.blogspot.com

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  6. These are amazing!!! I love the fact that they have storage and I get to pick my own fabrics. Thanks for sharing!

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  7. Thank you for sharing! I am going to make these soon!! What a great idea!!!

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  8. What a great idea!! I'll be adding another project to my list!! Thanks for sharing :)

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  9. These are all over pinterest teaching boards! So cute!

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  10. Thanks, everyone! After a year of daily use, they held up great! The kids loved them, and I sat on them pretty much every day to check papers, work with students one-on-one, etc. The fabric held up really well, even after scrubbing a few spots with soap & water. They look cute, give me extra storage, and serve their purpose well! I'm so glad I made them!

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    1. To cover the underside, take a piece of sturdy fabric cut the size of the square and staple it around the edges. That way it is finished on both sides. You could even use a piece of old jeans with a pocket still attached for an added storage. I am a sewer.

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  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  12. I wish I had a picture of my "buckets"! I used 5 gal buckets instead of the crates and made padded cushions for the top. I've been using them in my classroom for 4 years and they've held up pretty well. I am making new cushions this summer...it's time!
    How About Them Apples

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  13. I loved this post so much that I put a link to it on my must-read list! I hope that's alright! (Sorry, I probably should have asked first, but if it's not okay, I'll take it down!)

    Amy
    First Things First

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  14. Would you mind if I share your photo (with credit) along with the link to this post in my Saturday "Good Reads" post?

    a_heart4home at yahoo

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  15. That is the cutest thing for a classroom or rumpus room at home! Great Project!

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  16. OMG, I love that! I think they will be perfect in the basement rec-room, the plasit crate will not get damaged is there was to be a flood...these would be great for camping too! Well done you!

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  17. Love them! I can't wait to make some of my own!

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  18. Great project! I just wanted to let you know that we featured this project on our Facebook page with over 17,000 fans. We’d love it if you’d use our Featured Blogger button, available at: http://www.dailycraft.com/thank-you-for-crafting/. Our audience loved the project and we look forward to sharing more from you. Please let us know if you have any questions or projects you’d love us to feature! Thanks!

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  19. I had a teacher friend to do a similar project with the big plastic buckets with lids that you can get from home depot! Those were great for storage and might be a little higher for longer legs!

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  20. I realize this post is oldie old but I just love them and fully anticipate making them for my small group instruction table. Thanks so much for tutorial and photos!
    Wal-Mart (where I don't often shop) has really colorful crates for $3.47, sweet!

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  21. Great idea! I might try these with milk crates instead though so they are a bit more sturdy . . .

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  22. I made something very similar with 5 gallon buckets! Yours are super cute!

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  23. Great idea! I don't have enough chairs at my guided reading table so my students have to bring their desk chairs to the table.

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  24. Was just thinking using a vinyl felt backed table cloth instead of fabric, then the seats could easily be cleaned with a Clorox wipe.

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    1. That is a great idea!

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    2. You can also get that at the fabric department in most stores.

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  25. I love these! I can't wait to make my own set!

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  26. What a great idea. I homeschool my boys and can see using a crate seat for storage and seating. I'm seeing reading nook seat to start. I have tons of fabric and lots of crates... I think the boys would even like to help make these.

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  27. Awesome project! I mentioned and linked this post to my blog. This project is on my summer to-do list. I have all the materials ready, just waiting on a staple gun to borrow. Thanks for the step by step directions. Hope mine turn out like yours! Allison @ busyteacherlove.blogspot.com

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  28. Where did you get your crates for $3.00?
    l.muenks@hotmail.com

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    1. Wal-Mart! I think the original price was between $3.50 and $4, but they went on sale for $3 towards the end of the summer. Target has some right now for $3.50!

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  29. I've been thinking of making some to go around my kidney-shaped table. I think they may be too low and I work with K-3 students so lowering my tables may not work. How did they work around your table? I love the comment above about using a felt-back table cloth instead of material. That may help with added padding.

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    1. Hi Lee Ann,
      They have been great around my table, although it is pretty low for my kinders. Others' ideas of using thicker padding would probably help, and also make them more comfy!

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  30. I made these two days ago. I used an inch think padding, they hold my weight, and I am not the size of a child. I took ribbon and stapled loops onto the two long sides to help with lifting the lid off. Also, so that it wouldn't look so ugly, I used color duct tape across the bottom to cover up the fabric, and staples, and to make it so no wood was showing and it looked nicer. Just an idea.

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  31. If you make the padding thicker they will sit higher and be 24 inches high, just the right size for first graders!

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  32. I was wondering what thickness of plywood did you use?

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    1. Plywood- 3/8" thick

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    2. We used 3/4" plywood, just because that was what we had on hand, but I'm sure any thickness will work!

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  33. I would also love to know the dimensions of the ply wood you used!

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    1. We don't go back to school until late August, but I will measure the plywood when I am allowed back in my classroom! Just make sure to double-check your crate's measurements because they seem to vary slightly depending on where you buy them!

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  34. Bought all my supplies and I'm hoping to get this going today. Thanks so much!

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  35. Megan Do you think 5th graders could fit on them?

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    1. Hi! It is hard to say... they are much bigger than my little ones obviously, so they will sit higher on the seats, but the table could still be too tall unless you lowered it. You could buy one and stack something on top of it to try, and then return it if it doesn't work! Adding some foam to make the seats higher could also help!

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  36. Hi,
    I love these and want to make them for my first graders before school starts. Would you mind passing on the dimensions of the plywood to save me some time?

    Thanks so much!
    P.S. I am new to this blog thing so I have no idea how to be anything other than anonymous!

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    1. We don't go back to school until late August, but I will measure the plywood when I am allowed back in my classroom! Just make sure to double-check your crate's measurements because they seem to vary slightly depending on where you buy them!

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  37. That was my question too. I teach 5th grade and LOVE this idea. I guess I would need to lower the table.

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  38. I have the same thought...I teach 5th grade but these would still be adorable for the meeting area. Also on Pintrest they have 3-4 crates attached with one large cushion to make a ench. I really love that too!

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  39. I just took 1 of my crates to Home Depot and the guys measured and cut the wood (free because I am a teacher) for me. I would suggest buying a foam pad from a hardware store because they are cheaper than getting foam at a craft store, at least half the ost.

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  40. This is such a great idea. Not only great for a class room, but a kid's play room.

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