How to Build a Toy Box

You only need a few hours to build a toy box. The dimensions of this toy box are 3 ft long x 18 inches wide by 2 ft high.

Required Tools and Materials

¾ inch plywood
Screws (1 ½”)
Nails or bolts
Safety hinges (3)
Wood putty
Assorted paintbrushes

Step 1: Cut the Plywood

Take ¾” plywood and cut a couple of 36 x 24 planks. These will make up the front and back of the box. Cut 36 x 16 1/2 in of plywood for the bottom section.

For the sides, cut some plywood measuring 22 ½ x 16 ½. The top plywood should be 36 x 18 in. Note: if you are going to build a toy box that is much bigger, adjust the plywood cuts accordingly.

Step 2: Join the Bottom, Front and Back

Put the bottom piece in front of you. Get the front wood board. Connect it to the bottom using the screws (1 ½”). You’ll need at least six screws. Get the back wood board. Attach it to the bottom wood board in the same manner.

Step 3: Connect the Sides

Take one of the side wood boards (right or left). Put it between the back and front wood pieces. Put four screws from the bottom, back and front. Connect this to the side. Take the other side wood and repeat the process.

Step 4: Add the Top Lid

To build a toy box’s lid, fasten the hinges on the plywood you cut to be used as the lid. Put the two hinges 3 inches from the corner. Place the third in the middle. Put the lid on top of the box. Connect it to the back using the screws.

Step 5: Add the Wood Putty

Put as much wood putty as necessary in the screw holes. Give it time to dry. When it’s dry, sand the entire box. Make sure to remove all the sharp edges of the box.

Note: you can use nails instead of screws. You can also use bolts. Whichever you use, the number will increase if the box dimensions are larger than the example depicted here.

Step 6: Painting

After you build a toy box, you can start painting it. First apply a coat of primer. Allow the primer to dry completely. Alternatively you can use spray paint; it’s much faster. Add the base layer of paint.

Allow it to dry. Put a second base layer if you want. Let it dry completely. Use the paintbrush to write the kids’ name on the box. Better yet, have the kids paint the box themselves.

Tips and Warnings

Before you make the box, try to estimate how big it has to be. It’s a good idea to overestimate it a bit. Kids will probably fill it with a lot of stuff besides their toys. To avoid disputes, one toy box for each kid is ideal.

The time it takes to build a toy box is very little. It can be finished in a few hours or so. But you not only get rid of clutter, but the box will also become a plaything and a drawing canvas for kids.