It’s our first official day of summer vacation and I am so EXCITED! I’ve mentioned, many times before, how much I love entertaining in the summer! Cook-outs, swimming, eating, time with friends and family – HEAVEN! I’ve always wanted a wooden ice cooler for our patio and decided last week that I could totally build one!
Here she is, my Country Cooler! I’m so excited about this, not only because I have been wanting one but, I designed and built it myself! It’s my first attempt at a piece this big and I’m happy to say that it is such a beginner project and only cost me about $50! I will share a detailed tutorial with you here, and we now have FREE printable plans for this cooler! Click HERE, or the button below to save or print the plans!
6 – 1×4 boards @8ft.
5 – 1×2 boards @8ft.
3 – 1×3 boards @8ft.
1 – 2×3 board @4ft. (try to find a scrap or buy an 8ft. board)
1 set of 2 1/2″ Zinc narrow hinges
1 – Rubber stopper with chain
1 – 6 1/2″ Zinc utility pull
1 – sink flange
1 – 1/2″ U Bolt
1 – Ice scoop
1 – Zinc bottle opener
3 – Hooks
*I used cedar boards for everything except the 1×4’s on the main cooler surround. I had scrap 1×4 furring strips so I used those. However, if I didn’t have the scraps, I would have made the entire piece with cedar. It’s just gorgeous and great for outside!*
I found this great styrofoam cooler at Wal-Mart. I ordered it site-to-store, and it was ready for pick-up in about 4 hours!
I used my Ryobi Compound Miter saw to make the cuts. But, if you aren’t ready to purchase one, you can use the handsaw below for this project!
Start by building the surround for the cooler. I am going to share the measurements that I used for mine but, keep in mind that you need to measure and cut as you go. Board sizes vary and climates can affect the boards as well.
8 – 1×4 @25 1/4″
4 – 1×4 @16 1/2″
8 – 1×2 @25 1/4″
4 – 1×2 @16 1/2″
I attached the boards together using my Kreg Jig pocket holes! Above, I circled all of the places that I drilled the pocket holes and notice that I drilled pocket holes into the 1×4’s only so some 1×4’s have pocket holes going towards both ends to attach to the 1×2’s.
4 – 1×3 @38 1/4″
4 – 1×4 @ 38 1/4″
Next, I just nailed them to the surround with my new Ryobi AirStrike Cordless Brad Nailer! This baby ROCKS!
The top should be flush with the top of the surround
Now to make her pretty! Use 1×2 boards to trim the top, making the edges flush with the surround. You will have an over-hang between the legs. Measure for these cuts to get them exact and attach them with brad nails and wood glue!
Now for the top!
2 – 1×2 @25 1/4″
2 – 1×2 @16 1/2″
I attached the boards, for the top, with pocket hole screws. I circled where the pocket holes should be.
4 – 1×3 @23 3/4″
4 – 1×2 @23 3/4″
We need a drain still!
Now for the finish!
I brushed on 1 coat of Rust-Oleum Dark Walnut stain
and followed up with 3 coats of Rust-Oleum Spar Varnish in satin! This is a great finish to protect outdoor pieces! Make sure to give the suggested drying time between coats!
To get the distressed edges on the finish, I just used my Ryobi Corner Cat! It’s super easy to use and it’s light-weight! I just ran over all of the corners and edges with it.
I got to excited to get this together and didn’t take a picture of the hinges. They are super easy to install though! I just two at the back of the lid.
Do you love that zinc bottle opener? I purchased it from Amazon!. You can click the widget below to purchase your own!
I attached my hooks and handle and in the ice and drinks went It’s time to party!!!
I’m just in love with this cutie! We have already been enjoying it this weekend! I designed this cooler so that the styrofoam cooler can be replaced as needed. It just slides in and out. The lid can be pulled off as well! And, FYI, the cute kitchen towels are Threshold brand from Target
If you love my Country Cooler, I would LOVE your pins;)
Thanks so much to Jay of Jay’s Custom Creations for putting all of Shanty2Chic’s original plans into printable plans for our readers! You should check him out! He has some pretty awesome projects himself!
Thanks so much for stopping by and Happy Summer!