11 Impressive Projects You Can Make With Wood Scraps
Beginner or seasoned pro, what woodworker doesn’t have a pile of wood scraps in their shop? Check out these really cool (and easy!) projects you can make with them.
Scrap Wood End-Grain Coasters
One of my favorite parts about DIY and woodworking is trying different things. An inherent part of my hobby is hoarding the scraps from various projects. So every few months I need to clear out my pile and make something useful out of them. These end-grain coasters are fun because of the endless patterns you can create, and they make great gifts!
If you are anything like me, once a project is finished, you have all of this offcut lumber left over and hate to throw it away. It just feels like a waste. Well, this project will put that extra lumber to use. Put this cool little catapult on your desk at work to annoy your coworkers, or gift it to one of your young relatives. Since the only power tools we used are a jigsaw and a drill, this miniature catapult is easy for even a beginner to build!
This cutting board dazzles the eye, but making it is easy: Just cut strips of wood and glue them together. I used walnut and maple scraps cut at increments of 1/8-in., but the variations are endless. I made four versions of this design and got smarter with each.
Cedar Bath Mat
I saw a cedar mat like this online for $35 and thought, “Hey, I can make a better one for less.” You can build one, too, in three easy steps with some scrap cedar.
Make this simple-yet-useful computer shelf for your desk with a few pieces of scrap wood and a nail gun. We built the one shown with a 1 ft. x 2 ft. piece of plywood and two pieces of a 1×3 board cut to 12 in. lengths. Then we used a brad nailer to attach the plywood to the boards.
Cottage Shelf with Branches
Need a quick, distinctive display shelf? Make this tree branch shelf from all-natural materials. Just cut the supports from branches, screw on a shelf, attach it to the wall and you’re done!
Flip-Down Wall-Mounted Coat Rack
This coat rack project is one that you can personalize to your own taste and will be a useful piece in your home. We had some fun and used ebiara (red zebra wood) but if you have some 7-in. wide pieces in your scrap bin, you can build this project for less than $10. The only difficult part of this project is cutting the angles into the pivoting parts. We used a hand saw and a homemade miter box, but a powered miter saw or a plastic, store bought miter box works great.
Bookends are an easy way to break up space and add character to any bookcase. These industrial bookends are simple to build; you’ll only need a drill and saw. Personalize them to your taste with a different species of wood, stain or even paint. We used oak, finished with a Golden Oak stain, and black steel parts.
Contemporary Key Hanger
Build this clever key hanger in an hour with two strips of contrasting wood. Each set of keys has its own small fob which nests in between the spacers. Opposing bevels in the spacers and fobs keep your keys from falling on the floor. You don’t need much material, and it’s going to hang on your wall, so splurge on some attractive wood and get building!
Wall-Mounted Wine Rack
This super-simple wall-mounted wine rack is customizable and really easy to build. You can get it done in an afternoon with some scrap 2×6 boards!
Wood Puzzle Cube
The best puzzle cube in history is clearly the Rubik’s Cube. But I don’t think it’s a stretch to say this is a close second. This wood puzzle cube takes about an hour to build, and it’s way easier to build than it is to solve! Construction might look complicated, but if you closely follow the hole diagram (Figure A) and Parts Order (Figure B), you won’t have any trouble.