Repurposed Steamer Trunk

Repurposed Steamer Trunk

An antique steamer trunk is repurposed into a decorative shelving case.


5 col

Tools You’ll Need: Brad Nail gun with 18 Gauge 11/2” brads

Difficulty: Difficult

Materials
Repurposed steamer trunk
(3) 2’ x 3’ Foam board – 1/2” thickness
4’ Fabric – color and pattern of your choice
(6) 1” x 1” x 6” lumber (Ledgers)
(3) 1” x 6” x 20”* lumber (Shelves) *Length will vary depending on your trunk size
(3) 1” x 2” x 20”* lumber (Shelving Trim)
Wood stain to match existing trunk
Drill with pre-drill bit and Phillips head screwdriver bit
Scissors
Ruler
Glue gun with extra-strength glue sticks
Craft knife
Hammer
Chalk
Dry rag
Safety glasses

Materials for Legs (Optional)
(5) 1” x 2” x 4” lumber
(5) 2” x 3” Handrail – cut to 8” length
(10) 2” wood screws
(20) 1 1/2” wood screws
(5) 1/2” nailed furniture pads

Instructions

PREPARING INTERIOR FOAM BOARD

1. Measure the short and long sides inside the lid of the truck and note the measurements. Repeat for inside the bottom of the trunk

2. Using your measurements from Step 1, mark two rectangles on a sheet of foam board using a ruler and chalk. Carefully use a craft knife to cut them out. These will become the fabric covered back and lid panels

3. Lay out the fabric, print side down, and place the first piece of sized foam board on top of it. Use scissors to cut the fabric around the foam board leaving 1” excess on all sides

4. Once the fabric is cut, hold it in place on the form board with small dab of hot glue in each corner (See image below)

5. Fold the fabric over the edge of the foam board and secure in place with lines of hot glue. Work in small sections, carefully pressing the fabric over the glue as you move along the edge. At the corners, fold like a wrapped present by tucking one piece of fabric under the other (See image below)

6. Repeat Steps 3-5 for the second piece of foam board and fabric

7. Once the foam boards are covered, apply hot glue quickly and carefully to the back of one board at a time and press into the lid and bottom of the trunk (See image below)

8. Smaller foam panels will be added to all four sides of the inside of the trunk. Measure the height and width of each of the four inner sides of the trunk. Make a note of your measurements. Repeat Steps 2-5 for cutting and covering the foam panels in fabric

9. Repeat Step 7 for attaching the four small panels to the inside of the trunk

ADDING THREE SHELVES

10. Use a dry rag and wood stain on all the lumber matching them to the existing color of the trunk. Allow to dry before moving on to the next step

11. Measure the inside long edge of the trunk and mark the center point with chalk on the fabric. Repeat on the opposite side. These will be the positions of the first two ledgers that will support the center shelf

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12. Center 1” x 1” x 6” lumber over one of the chalk marks from Step 11 and secure in position using a nail gun with 1 1/2” brad nails. Repeat for the opposite side

13. Measure the distance between the center ledger and the top of the trunk and mark the center point with chalk. Repeat on the opposite side. These will be the positions of two ledgers that will support the upper shelf

14. Measure the distance between the center ledger and the bottom of the trunk and mark the center point with chalk. Repeat on the opposite side. These will be the positions of two ledgers that will support the lower shelf

15. Repeat Step 12 to attach 1” x 1” x 6” lumber on all four chalk marks. You will now have a total of six ledgers that will support three shelves (See image below)

16. Position the 1” x 6” x 20”* over the top two ledgers to make the first shelf. It will be a snug fit and won’t need nails to hold it in place. Repeat for the additional two shelves. (See image below)

17. Place a 1” x 2” x 20”* lumber over the front edge of the top shelf so the ledgers are hidden. Secure in place using a nail gun with 1½” brad nails spaced 4” to 6” along the length of the shelf. Repeat for each shelf (See image below)

ADDING THE LEGS (OPTIONAL STEPS)

There will be a total of five legs on the trunk, four on the body of the trunk and one to support the lid.

18. On one side of 1” x 2” x 4” lumber, use a pencil and ruler to connect opposite corners to make a large X and find the center point of the wood. Drill two holes with the pre-drill bit, one either side of the center point. Repeat for all five pieces (See image below)

19. Turn the 1” x 2” x 4” lumber over and drill four more pre-drill holes, one in each corner. Repeat for all five pieces (See image below)

20. Use a Phillips head drill bit or screwdriver to attach the 1” x 2” x 4” lumber to an 8” leg using two 2” wood screws through the pre-drill holes from Step 18. Repeat for all five pieces (See image below)

21. Hammer 1/2-inch nailed furniture pads to the bottom center of each leg

22. Attach four legs on the side of the trunk, one in each corner, using 1 1/2” wood screws through the four corner holes in the 1” x 2” x 4” lumber

Repeat Step 22 to attach one leg to the lid of the trunk. This fifth leg will help support the lid when the trunk is open and displayed as shelving

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