Honeybee boxes are among some of my favorite storage solutions. Yes, they were in fact once a home for hundreds of buzzing, nectar-sucking honeybees. These bee boxes serve more than one function. They are incredibly sturdy, they stack, they stand, and they hang to serve as whatever they need to be in your home. Authentic bee boxes have a nice dovetail corner, which speak to the durability and fine craftsmanship that went into creating these former bee homes.
At one time, these boxes were warehouses of honey to our local bees. When the bee keepers are finished using them, I try to snag a few. Why not give these wooden boxes a second life?! They can be used for so many purposes with minimal modifications.
When first acquired, honeybee boxes look something like this.
Before bringing these lovely boxes into my home, I give them a good cleaning and sanding. This removes all the dirt, residue, and splinters. Once my exterior and interior is smooth I take a white chalk paint and coat the exterior edges.
Honeybee boxes are the new wooden crates!
STORAGE: If you plan to use your bee box for storage I recommend attaching some tongue and groove board to the back, as bee boxes have open sides. You can also attach some caster wheels to the four corners for bottom shelf storage in your pantry or closet!
RUSTIC SIGNS: Inside some bee boxes you might find multiple wooden frames with a wired wax or plastic insert. This was where the honey was produced. I cut a scrap piece of metal to replace the insert. These inserts can now be used as dividers, shelves or even stand alone signs.
SHELVES: Honeybee boxes are stackable which allows for a variety of heights. I like to use two stacked bee boxes as a shelf in my office.
BOOKSHELF/ COFFEE BAR: This design has served as a bookshelf and a hanging coffee bar in my home. When hanging a beebox I recommend supporting the base with large L- Brackets. These can be bought just about anywhere and come in many designs and colors. I generally go with a solid black, simple option.
END TABLE/ NIGHT STAND: If two or three bee boxes are stacked on top of one another they become a charming nightstand or end table. When I lived in an apartment this was my bedside table and now it serves as an end table in our living room. The base and top of this table are made of the original bee box lids. If you plan to move this table around, you will want to nail each layer together. If you want the option to separate these boxes for future use they will stand sturdy without any reinforcement.