Wastepaper Baskets from Scraps

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Project by Douglas posted 08-15-2014 01:09 PM 3231 views 41 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

From a nice pile of red & white oak cutoffs and scraps, I made these four wastepaper baskets. The designs were inspired by a few images I’d seen online, then adapted to suit my taste. The “slats” design has angled mortise & tenons, which is the first time I’d tried that. I made two versions on the “leaves” design, one with leather loops, and the other with brass clips. The brass clips turned out to be pretty tricky to bend cleanly, so the results were so-so. The leather loops, fastened with copper rivets, worked out much better, and were easier to execute as well. I think I like working with other materials in my woodworking.

All in all, this was a lot of fun, and I was glad to class up the house by replacing various plastic garbage cans with these.

I blogged about it here, with some more info and pictures…

a few more pix…

-- Douglas in Chicago -

17 comments so far

View gepatino's profile


217 posts in 3286 days

#1 posted 08-15-2014 01:45 PM

Nice work!

I love the “leaves” design, another one to the to-do list, if you don’t mind someone copying it.


View Nindwood's profile


134 posts in 2845 days

#2 posted 08-15-2014 01:52 PM

Very nice projects Douglas. You really did fantastic designs and the color you got is super. What is the finish?

-- Narinder, Calgary, Ab.

View sras's profile


6255 posts in 4291 days

#3 posted 08-15-2014 02:16 PM

Nice collection of designs!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Sanding2day's profile


1016 posts in 3008 days

#4 posted 08-15-2014 02:22 PM

Very cool… Great looking garbage cans, thinking I would feel conflicted about putting a bag into them/putting them to use. Thanks for sharing…

-- Dan

View ChrisK's profile


2054 posts in 4243 days

#5 posted 08-15-2014 02:50 PM

Very nice work. Great designs and craftsmanship.

-- Chris K

View Douglas's profile


424 posts in 3722 days

#6 posted 08-15-2014 03:03 PM

Gepatino – go ahead and copy, I copied them mostly from antiques I saw online!

Nariwood – the finish is one I’ve used for my other A&C designs: transtint dark brown water based dye, then several coats of amber shellac, sanded in between, then finally some dark paste wax applied with steel wool.

Dan – so far I’m just putting dry stuff into them as waste, nothing sloppy or wet. There’s an under counter can for that in the kitchen. I’m considering making a can liner out of copper for the largest basket, so wet thing can go in it, and only the liner would need to be lifted and emptied when the time comes.

-- Douglas in Chicago -

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 3647 days

#7 posted 08-15-2014 04:23 PM

They’re better looking than any trash can ought to be. Well done.

-- Brian Timmons -

View pintodeluxe's profile


6444 posts in 3975 days

#8 posted 08-15-2014 04:31 PM

I really like the slat design, that one looks great. Then I saw the leather straps… wow. That is an excellent way to combine materials in woodworking.
I would be tempted to buy a dark colored pre-fab metal waste can, and build a wooden can around it.
The copper idea would look great, but I don’t have the metalworking skills yet.

Great projects.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View Sanding2day's profile


1016 posts in 3008 days

#9 posted 08-15-2014 05:40 PM

Makes sense Douglas… Liner would certainly be the way to go copper or nice ply whatever, was just picturing the bag draped over the outside edges and how that would detract from your great cans… Again great work have me thinking I’ll have to add this to the infinite list of things to do at some point…

-- Dan

View Grumpymike's profile


2483 posts in 3477 days

#10 posted 08-15-2014 06:14 PM

Last year I met a young man, about 16 or so, at the Habitat Restore and he was buying handfuls of ceiling fan blades and I just had to ask … He was making “slat design” waste baskets, selling them so that the profits went for some charitable org. and I so admired this kid I just handed him a ten spot. ...
Spark any ideas??

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 4747 days

#11 posted 08-15-2014 09:23 PM

Why can’t you admire me with a ten spot after all I am Scottish and love the American people .Eagerly awaiting my ten spot yours Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View Mean_Dean's profile


7057 posts in 4309 days

#12 posted 08-16-2014 12:19 AM

Great looking trash baskets! I love the A&C look to them! I definitely like the liner idea, as these are too nice looking to mar up with nasty trash!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View 489tad's profile


4021 posts in 4173 days

#13 posted 08-16-2014 12:21 AM

You have some beautiful scraps hanging around. Awesome builds.
I agree with Dan (sandingtoday) with the copper liner would be sweet.
A+ to Grumpymike for helping out the young guy.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View Douglas's profile


424 posts in 3722 days

#14 posted 08-16-2014 12:23 AM

Pinto – building them around an existing liner would have been a good idea. Why didn’t you suggest that earlier?!?

-- Douglas in Chicago -

View ellgee's profile


71 posts in 3089 days

#15 posted 08-16-2014 01:07 AM

When you really want to use a plastic-bag liner .. like the bathroom wastebasket,
containing old floss etc stuff you don’t want to touch again ..
you go find grandma’s old embroidery hoop, of a size that fits a few inches down into
your very handsome wastebasket, and put the top edge of the plastic around that,
then into the bin.
Should work okay for octagonal.
Maybe you could whip up something of the same idea, for the especially handsome square one.

showing 1 through 15 of 17 comments

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