How to Paint a Buffalo Plaid Wood Crate

Home decor

Inside: Full tutorial for how to paint your own buffalo plaid wood crate for the holidays, plus three different ways to style it!

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paint a buffalo plaid wood crateWhat is Buffalo Plaid and why is it trendy at the Holidays?

Buffalo plaid, also known as buffalo check, is typically red and black and is identified by large square blocks formed at the intersection of two different colours of fabric or yarn. The trend has evolved from lumberjack wear to be more synonymous with rustic and cozy – which is perfect for the holidays. It’s also now expanded to be black and white, green and white and all the colours of the rainbow. Buffalo plaid is super easy to recreate on a small or large scale and makes a great addition to any decor!

How to Paint a Buffalo Plaid Wood Crate

We love giving thoughtful, handmade gifts over the holidays. However we’re not a big fan of all the disposable packaging that sometimes comes along with this time of year. So we love to use items that can be repurposed or continue to be used after the presents are given. Not only is this buffalo plaid wood crate (made with chalk-style paint) beautifully trendy packaging, but it can be used as storage or a home decor accent as well.

Supplies Needed to Make a Buffalo Plaid Wood Gift Crate

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Instructions to Paint a DIY Buffalo Plaid Wood Crate

Start by sanding any sharp or rough edges of the wooden crate. Wipe off excess dust.

Paint the entire surface of the crate inside and out using white paint.

Starting on the bottom surface of the crate tape off cross sections of the crate from one end to the other. You can use the width of the painter’s tape as a guide for the spacing of the tape strips.

Smooth down edges of the tape as much as possible to minimize bleeding of the paint underneath the tape.

Water down some green chalky finish paint to create a wash. Use this wash to paint the untaped sections of the bottom of the crate. Use the paint sparingly to avoid drip marks in between the slats of the crate. Let the paint dry thoroughly.

Carefully remove the tape and set it aside to use for the sides of the crate. With the watered-down paint there will likely be bleed through underneath the tape.

Use a small paintbrush and white paint to cover over any green paint that may have bled under the tape. This may take a couple coats to get full coverage.

Once the white paint is completely dry paint over alternating slats with the watered-down green paint. Be careful not to over-paint: you just want to go over the slats one time so that the consistency of the paint will match the vertical sections. Let the paint fully dry.

Next, using a small paintbrush and non-diluted green paint, go over the intersecting squares of the buffalo plaid pattern.

Let the paint on the bottom surface completely dry and then move onto one of the sides of the crate. Line up the tape as you did on the bottom surface of the crate and tape strips on the side of the crate.

Repeat the process for the sides of the crate and if you choose to you could also do it on the ends of the crate where the handles are.

Once the paint is completely dry you’ll want to distress it a little bit by sanding it down with some sandpaper. This really helps to bring out the grain of the wood and makes it look a little bit more worn in.

Wipe down the dust from the surface with a damp cloths. Once completely dry seal the paint with a clear wax.

Gift Basket Ideas using your Buffalo Plaid Wood Crate

And there you have it. Your new Buffalo plaid crate is ready to be filled with some thoughtful gifts.

Here are a few ideas that you could go with.

For a crocheter or knitter:

  • Several skeins of chunky yarn
  • Some large crochet or knitting needles
  • Set of cute stitch markers
  • A keepsake set of small scissors

For coffee lovers:

  • Fun mugs
  • Fresh ground coffee
  • Chocolate and her cookies
  • Coffee flavoring


For wine lovers:

  • A nice bottle of wine
  • Wine glasses
  • Wine glass markers
  • Cute stoppers
  • Wine bottle opener

Once your crate is filled you can attach some cute little embellishments on the outside such as: An adorable reindeer ornament made from driftwood






Why not try a A driftwood gift tag!





Or always on trend Nature-inspired printable gift tags


Again thank you so much Erin for the opportunity to share this DIY idea. We look forward to seeing you again next month with another project idea.

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