Recycle Idea: Build a New Desk from Old Closet Doors

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Recycle old doors as a  desk

Creative projects are the perfect cure for the winter blahs. This one will update your workspace for the new year and make good use of materials you already have on hand. If you–or someone you know–are replacing doors or cabinets in your house, consider reusing them as a desk for your home office area or kids’ room.

If your doors are in a good shape, you won’t need to do anything but attach them onto a base; if you feel the surface is not perfect enough for use as a desk, sand it down with fine sandpaper and give it a coat of polyurethane to smooth it down and protect its surface from heavy use.

Now all you need is a base or legs. Get creative here! You can use what you already have at home, or purchase items for very little cost. If you are attaching two pieces together–as a corner configuration or straight–you can use simple metal brackets. Drill a hole on each side and attach them with wood screws. For ours (above and below) we improvised a bit and used a piece of door lock (see detail below) that was no longer needed, flattened its curved end with a hammer and reused it as a connecting bracket.

Some ideas for items you can use for a base or legs:

  • filing cabinets
  • shelving units
  • drafting table supports (IKEA sells legs and drafting table supports in a variety of designs and finishes at a very low cost)
  • cinder blocks
  • books! and more books
  • old steamer trunks

If you have more ideas, let us know!

Home office desk

Detail of metal bracket connecting two pieces of recycled desk

If you’re handy, you can go even further to design and make your own desk, there are no limits to creativity. See more ideas below.

Recycle old doors as kids' desks

Old kitchen cabinet doors reused as kids’ desks

recycling wooden cable reels

Wooden reels turned into computer desk; courtesy of Me gusta reciclar

Recycled wood used as desk

Wooden pallets become an office desk with a glass top

Reused doors as desk

An old rustic door reused as study desk and a holder; courtesy of Manoteca

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