Introduction

vintage window box with planted flowers
Photo: Kristine Larsen
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All you need to build a cottage-style window box is a few feet of 6- or 8-inch-wide trim (choose straight baseboard or casing, rather than angled crown), one 2-by-2-foot sheet of ½-inch exterior plywood, water-resistant wood glue, and a shallow plastic planter to cradle the soil and flowers. Because most old trim is covered in toxic lead paint, either remove the finish with a wet stripper or seal it under a clear top coat. This is an easy one-person project, but it's more fun with a helper.
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    Tools List

    • circular saw
      Circular saw
    • hammer with nailset
      Hammer and nailset
    • bar clamps
      Clamps
    • impact driver
      Drill driver fitted with a ½-inch paddle bit
    • miter saw
      Miter saw
    • latex gloves
      Gloves
    • dust mask
      Mask
    • eye goggles
      Goggles

    Shopping List

    1. 6- or 8-inch salvaged baseboard or casing

    2. Plastic planter
    The planter can be shallower than the window box but should match it in length.

    3. Water-resistant wood glue

    4. ½-inch exterior plywood
    Get a 2-by-2-foot piece.

    5. 6d finish nails

    6. Clear spar urethane