No Whining Over These Crates

Installing wine crate shelvesWe were able to do a couple of projects this weekend, which makes me happy. I wonder what it is that drives me to undertake these endeavors. Why do I have this need to make my house “perfect.” I was talking to my friend Jenny last night, and she said that she feels perfectly comfortable in her home. As long as it is clean she does not feel the need to do anything to it. I have not been to her current house, but I have visited her homes in the past, and they are all quite lovely. So, why can’t I accept my home as it is?

My house is darling, but it had been neglected before I moved it, and it deserves to fulfill its potential. Plus the work gives me a sense of accomplishment and change. Maybe it is because I grew up moving around the country that I cannot stand things to be the same for too long. This is my sixth year at my current job and my third year in this house. I have never had one job for so long, and I am close to setting a record for an abode as well. If I stay here for one more year, I will have lived here longer than I ever lived anywhere. EVER. In all of my thirty eight years. Even now I feel the urge to flee- to move somewhere- anywhere else. If things were not changing in my house, I would not be able to stand the monotony in my life. These changes somehow give me the peace of mind I need to stay in one place for a while. I cannot move now because I have not accomplished my mission here. When I have achieved my goals, I will be able to move on. That is not to say that I would not go now if I were given the right opportunity. It just means that I am not actively seeking the move. I can stay for a while.

Snuggling animals on the couch

So, as you are probably losing patience with my ramblings, I will show you one of our projects from this weekend. I have had these wine crates for several years. I took three of them from the trash outside a wine store when I was living in Manhattan. They put some out every week, and I wish I could have taken more. At the time, I used them as “drawers” on my bookshelves. Later, I found another and used them in my kitchen cabinets here. Then, I saw this post on I have wanted more storage in my kitchen since I moved in, and this seemed the perfect solution. Here is how it turned out.

Wine crate shelves

For once, we found a project that went smoothly and did not take longer than we planned. It was a relief to finish, because this corner of the kitchen has been an eyesore for a while. It seemed to attract clutter from everywhere.

Cluttered kitchen

The first task was to remove everything from the area.

One wine crate

This attracted Crème.

Cat investigating wine crateCat investigating wine crateCat investigating wine crateCat investigating wine crateCat investigating wine crate

While, I was taking all these adorable pictures of my cat, Douglas gathered the tools we would need.

Tools to install wine crate shelves

Then, he drilled holes in the four corners of the first crate.

Installing wine crate shelves

And made them bigger.

Installing wine crate shelves

He hammered in plastic anchors.

Installing wine crate shelvesInstalling wine crate shelves

And put in the screws.

Installing wine crate shelves

The process was the same for the next box, except that I had to hold the box while he drilled the holes so that it stayed level.

Installing wine crate shelves

I hammered in some of the anchors as well.

Installing wine crate shelves

One box

Installing wine crate shelves

Two box

Installing wine crate shelves

Three box

Installing wine crate shelves

Shoe box

Installing wine crate shelves

Douglas was proud of himself.

Installing wine crate shelves

We staggered the boxes to give some support and more shelf space.

Installing wine crate shelvesInstalling wine crate shelves

Then, it was time to stage the shelves. Crème was the first adornment. She is too cute for words.

Cat on wine crate shelves

In case you were wondering where Kahlua was this whole time, here she is. You can see the worry in her eyes, can’t you? She hates all home improvement. In fact, she thinks that is not an appropriate term. Kahlua is not like her mother and does not like change.

Dog in bed

A vase full of corks and a martini pitcher

Vase and martini pitcher

Some small tins and my recipe box

Small tins and recipe box

A gift from some dear friends after we adopted Kahlua. It is a decanter with a glass on top.

Kahlua decantor

Some tins and a ceramic piece from Canada

Tins and ceramic piece

There is a prize for anyone that can guess what this is.

Tins and ceramic piece

More tins and two martini glasses

Tins and martini glasses

A plant and the light switch. We were very lucky that two wine crates fit perfectly underneath the switch plate.


Small wine advertisement mirror and another plant

Wine advertisement mirror and plant

Ball jar glasses our friend made for our wedding. It was one of our favorite gifts. We loved that it was homemade, and Douglas was thrilled with the connection to Ball State since he is an alum. If you are unaware of the connection, the Ball family founded the university with the money they made from the jars.

Ball jar wine glasses

Three marble pieces. The mortar and pestle were Douglas’ before he moved in. Another friend gave us the little jar and toothpaste holder. The jar now holds garnish spears for drinks and our collection of chopsticks is in the toothpaste holder.

Marble pieces

I had hoped to find a fifth wine box to put on top, but I think that it looks great with the metal Yuengling sign there. I found that sign in the trash when I lived on the Upper East Side of New York City.

Tin Yuengling advertisement

While we were working in the kitchen, we took the opportunity to hang up some of our aprons.

Aprons hanging in kitchen

So, the project is done and all is well on Park Avenue. Here is another before and after shot.

Cluttered kitchenWine crate shelves

Happy Homemaking!

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I am a teacher, traveler, artist, writer, homemaker and a whole lot more. In January 2009, I bought the Cape of Dreams. It was the second house that I had ever owned, but it was the first that I bought by myself. I now live in the house with my husband Douglas, our dog Kahlua, and Crème de Menthe, the cat. Because, what life is complete without a little Kahlua and Cream? I love arts and crafts of all kinds, and I refinish furniture as well. We are slowly redoing our entire house. You can read about my projects on my blog

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13 comments on “No Whining Over These Crates
  1. Darla Gahan says:

    I really like how the crates work in that space. I was able to see the pictures so easily. Did you use you new camera?

  2. litablog says:

    Jessica it all looks great! You and Doug did a fine job!

  3. krystal forsyth says:

    Looks great! So jealous of your wine crates!!!!!!

  4. Stacey says:

    Love this idea and I’ve had the same thoughts with this. I’ve been saving pictures from around the web and hope to do the same type thing in my house. Also, just so you know…. LOVE that you used the full sized pictures in the posts. It’s much easier to read and look at. (hope you don’t mind me saying that) The crates and the BLOG look great. Wonderful inspiration for me!

  5. The crates are great… but totally overshadowed by your cat. (I am a cat fanatic.) I left you a comment on your last post… but I think it went to spam, and I’ve been having a terrible time with Akismet lately, and wanted to be sure that you got it…?

  6. yuhaiwing says:

    It’s a sweet setup. Nice use of those trash crates!

  7. Jenilyn says:

    I love the bigger pictures taken with your new camera! !! Also I know what the ceramic piece is, do I get a prize? 😉

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