$5 Thrift Store Desk Organizer

$5 Thrift Store Desk Organizer

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If you want to decorate your home on a budget, thrift store makeovers are the way to go. All you need is a little paint, patience and just a little bit of time. I found this wooden crate at my local Goodwill for $3.49 and it’s perfect to become my thrift store desk organizer. My planner, pens, post its and calendars (yes I have more than one) need a home. It’s always a good time to get organized.

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The Rules:

  • Upcycle an item(s) from a thrift store, resale store, or garage sale into a new piece of decor.
  • There’s no monthly theme.
  • There’s no budget to stick to.

Meet the Hosts

Angela | Simply Beautiful By Angela – Pili | My Sweet Things – Beverly | Across the Blvd – Gail | Purple Hues and Me – Chas | Chas’ Crazy Creations – Michelle | Our Craft Mom – Meredith | Thriftwood Home – Kathleen | Our Hopeful Home – Jenny | Cookies Coffee and Crafts

$5 Thrift Store Desk Organizer

Supplies for Thrift Store Upcycle from Box to Desk Organizer

Thrift Store Wooden Box
1/4 Inch Plywood
Folk Art Home Decor Chalk Paint
Folk Art Clear Wax
Sand Paper
Saw
Wood Glue
White Vinyl
Plaid Nylon Chip Brushes
Palette Pack
Cricut Maker

Let’s Create a Thrift Store Desk Organizer

Thrift Store Wooden Box Find

As with all thrift store items, give it a good cleaning.

Inside of Thrift Store Wooden Box

To get started, I peeled off the design on the one side of the box. Then I had to remove the glue. This was not easy at all! I tried the nail polish remover, rubbing alcohol and nothing worked. So I sanded it down and it didn’t look good so I just removed the piece (it was barely holding on). That’s the best thing about DIY, make it your own!

Creating a Desk organizer for storage from a thrift store find

For this side, I added a piece of 1/4 inch plywood as a backing and painted one side of it with the White FolkArt Chalk Paint since this will be the back of the box facing the wall. The other side I painted it black to match the other side of the box. Make sure you paint this before adding the wood to the box (it will be so much easier).

This desk organizer is going to hold all of my important blogging calendars, books, and more. I decided to put a 1/4 of an inch plywood piece in the center to separate my stuff.

Adding a piece of plywood for extra storage in the DIY Thrift Store Desk Organizer

Just glue the piece in and let it dry. One side is going to hold my calendars, notebooks, planner stickers and the other side will be for my pens, pencils and post its, etc.

Adding an inspiring message to my DIY desk organizer for storage

The other side of the desk organizer, looks great so I’m going to leave the black alone and add a cute saying to it with white vinyl. I love Rae Dunn so I’ll be making a design that is inspired by her work. If you don’t have a Cricut Maker, you can find vinyl decals at the craft store and the Dollar Tree to add to the storage box.

Painting and Decorating the Thrift Store Upcycle

One thing this box needed more than anything is a fresh coat of white paint. It’s going to be sitting by my Command Center and I want it to match. One of my favorite thrift store upcycles ever is my weekly chalkboard calendar. My house was hit hard with this cold/flu last week (it seems to linger) and the area by our command center is under construction. So right now it’s going to hang out on the kitchen counter (but it looks great there too).

Upcycle the wooden box with paint from the thrift store

For the paint, I’m using Folk Art Home Decor Chalk Paint in White Adirondack. Seriously, I’m loving the feel of this chalk paint and it painted the box so nice. It really gives it that old, rustic feel. Once the paint dries, I will sand it lightly and add Folk Art Home Decor Clear Wax to seal it. The wax made the box feel amazing. I’m so impressed by it.

Thrift Store DIY Desk Storage Holder

My New Desk/Planner Organizer

DIY Upcycle from Thrift Store Box to Desk organizer

It’s the perfect place to have all of my items for Cookies Coffee and Crafts! I even have room for more stuff and I won’t have to worry about forgetting my stuff on the table and worrying about the kids spilling stuff on it. Another great DIY thrift store upcycle that was a success.

Inside Look of the desk organizer

How cute is this? That’s the best thing about thrift store upcycles, is that you can make it your own!

DIY Thrift Store Desk Organizer

And now for more thrifty goodness!

Check out what my fellow upcyclers created below!



Hi I'm Jenny from Cookies, Coffee, and Crafts. I love to create decorations for my home, projects to create magical holidays, and to have fun with my kids. The quote "I run on coffee, chaos, and crafts" describes my world and I wouldn't have it any other way. I hope you find inspiration and enjoy my creative journey.