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Suitcase Crafts: 4 Ways to Repurpose Old Luggage

by Susan Melgren, Web Editor

Tags: diy projects, crafts, suitcases, luggage, repurpose,

At Natural Home & Garden, we love the idea of repurposing old items to create new things. Repurposing might involve an investment of time (and creativity) on your part, but ultimately it can save not only resources but the energy it takes to make new products—not to mention money, too.

Old luggage has a certain whimsy and worldly charm that can enhance any home’s décor—and the possibilities for using them are endless! Check out these four ideas for repurposing old luggage into fun, functional suitcase crafts.

Suitcase Side Tables

Who says furniture has to be expensive? Old luggage can make a great side table in a few easy steps, and all it costs is the price of a thrift store suitcase. For a unique bedside table, try stacking a trio of suitcases together. Or top a low stool with a single suitcase for a more modern look (without the need of additional suitcases!).

bedside suitcase table 
Photo By Thomas Gibson 

Just stack a trio of suitcases for a quick ‘n’ easy bedside table. (Fun fact: this image was one of the contenders for the cover of the January/February 2012 issue of Natural Home & Garden!)

suitcase side table 
Photo By Stacie/Courtesy Flickr 

For a suitcase table that involves a bit more effort, check out the DIY vintage suitcase tutorial from the blog Stars for Streetlights.

Pet Beds

cat bed made from an old suitcase 
Photo By Susan Wasinger 

Create a purrrfect pet bed for your cat (or small dog) by repurposing the better half of a thrift store suitcase. It’s pretty easy; just remove the top of the suitcase and fit the bottom with a cozy pillow. For more specific instructions, check out the article “Try This: Cat Baggage.”

Suitcase Chair

suitcase chairs 
Photos By Susan Wasinger 

Old suitcases can make a comfy perch for humans, too. If extra seating is a problem anytime guests come over, check out this project for turning an old suitcase into a stow-away chair. Pull it out when guests come over, then fold it up and store it until your next big event. This suitcase chair also makes for great portable seating. (All your friends with conventional lawn chairs are sure to be jealous.)

Medicine Cabinet

medicine cabinet made from an old suitcase 
Photos Courtesy Blake Sloane 

Sometimes all you need is to take an idea and turn it on its head—or in this case, its side. This medicine cabinet, made by artist Blake Sloane, was made by attaching an old suitcase to the wall and adding a mirror and a few shelves.

A few more possibilities:

• Attach short legs to create an ottoman or low-chest.

• Cut old suitcases in half to create shelves with charm.

• Make a chest of drawers.

• Turn them into adorable outdoor planters.