How to Make a Rustic Farmhouse Wooden Drawer Centerpiece Tray Out of Pallet Wood

Over my years of being a junker, yard saler, and flea market shopper, a lot of old wooden drawers have passed through my house.  Each one was different, but I loved them all.

There was the big wooden drawer that I turned into a farmhouse cabinet.

There were the drawers that I turned into storage shelves for craft supplies.

And the really messed up drawers that got repurposed into fabulous wall bins.

And the one I turned into a shelf for my son’s violin.

But my favorite wooden drawer?

It didn’t start out as a drawer at all.

It started out as a pile of pallet wood boards.

I hope you love it as much as I do, but let me explain why I made it first.

How to Make a Rustic Farmhouse Style Wooden Drawer Centerpiece |

A few weeks ago when my husband and I made a farmhouse handled tote for flowers, he made a practice crate first to figure out how to put it together.

It’s been sitting in my living room, and the crate reminded me of a wooden drawer – a very rustic one.

I didn’t need two handled totes, but I had a light-bulb moment and realized that with just a bit of work, it would make an amazing display piece for my coffee table.

I’m not sure whether to call it a tray, a crate, or a drawer.  I just know I truly love how it turned out.

Supplies I Used: (affiliate links included for your convenience)

pallet wood


palm sander

Early American wood stain

Low gloss tung oil

Hickory Hardware rustic iron drawer pulls

How to Make a Rustic Farmhouse Wooden Drawer Tray

1. Follow steps 1-4 of the Farmhouse Tote tutorial.

2. Once assembled, you end up with a very primitive looking crate.

3. Add a coat of wood stain to give it an aged look.

4. Use a palm sander to distress the sides and edges.  This will make it look more worn and weathered.

Here’s a close-up view of the front of the drawer.

5. Add  drawer pulls on each end.  The wood looks a bit cloudy from sanding, but that gets fixed in the final step.

6. Put tung oil on a rag and rub it into the wood.  This protects the wood and gives it a very pretty low-gloss sheen.

Distressing the wood really brings out the texture and grain, and the tung oil brightens up the finish.

I’m getting ready to give my coffee table a makeover, and this wooden drawer tray will be perfect on top of it.

How to Make a Rustic Farmhouse Antique Style Wooden Drawer Display Crate |

Vaya con Dios,


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  1. Fun project, Angie…I would have thought it came right out of a primitive piece! Happy Saturday!

  2. It looks great (as does your photography)! Perfect on the coffee table.
    Although, being me and being a graphics nut, I was fully expecting you to use one of your awesome stencils on the front to make it look like it came from an old bakery or something.

  3. Love. Love . Love it! Oh I had a light bulb moment too while I was reading this! I have pinned!
    Thanks for the tutorial.

    • Thanks Sherry – glad you like it! I’m actually thinking of a whole new use for the drawer that didn’t occur to me at first. I’ll share it later if it works out! 🙂

  4. Naomi S. says:

    I love it, Angie! It looks so simple to make, but I’m not so handy with tools! Mine would probably be scree-jawed!

    • I’m not always great with tools either, Naomi. Thankfully, my husband is, so he helps me figure out the best way to put things together. I come up with the ideas, then he has to figure out how to make it work, so we make a good team! 🙂

  5. Love it, I have it on my list to make one for my oils and salt and pepper that I keep out, just waiting for the weather to get nice so I can use the miter saw outside.

  6. Oh my goodness, I’ve never thought about using an old drawer! Fabulous Idea!

  7. This is a great project. I love everything about it and think it can be very versatile. This is now on my to do list.

  8. This looks so simple and pretty. I absolutely love the drawer pulls!

  9. It looks so lovely. I have three old office drawers that I rescued from a lady at the tip. Beloved thought I was mad, but I knew they’d come in handy some day! Thank you for the lovely inspiration. Sue via #CreateLinkInspire

  10. I love this little wooden drawer, thanks I am going to try it!

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