Below you’ll find images and interactive models for two different versions of the toy bin designed based on the images you sent to Sarah. The first uses the dimensions of the bins in the first image you sent (from Ana White’s blog). It seemed a bit undersized given that you mentioned it functioning sort of as a window seat, so I scaled it up a little for the second design – taking it from 12″ cubes to 16″ cubes.
Below the models, I’ve included a full breakdown of the price – including my anticipated costs for materials and labor. I like to provide a full picture at the beginning of a project so you can see where your money is going. Please let me know if you have any questions.
A few notes:
1. For projects like this, I use project panels – large pine boards made up of multiple smaller pieces glued together and machined perfectly flat and square in a factory. It achieves close to the same economy as plywood (project panel: $1.88sqft; solid plank: $3.18sqft; plywood: $1.56sqft) without sacrificing true solid wood construction. They also lend a piece a unique look with varied grain patterns throughout the surface. They cut down on both materials costs and labor – so it’s a win-win from a cost and scheduling perspective.
2. I will be reinforcing the structure of the bench with small metal corner braces inside each of the cubes. Looking at similar products available elsewhere, most don’t seem likely to hold up to kids climbing on them, which is inevitable. This reinforcement will help make sure the shelf doesn’t start to wobble as it is abused over the years.
3. In addition to the friends & family discount I’ve included in the quote, I’d also like to offer to add some personalization to the project for free. I can add names, words, or any type of design in adhesive vinyl sealed to the surface with polyurethane anywhere you’d like.
Click on the model below to activate rotation and zooming. This works best on a tablet or laptop. I didn’t mark the dimension, but the interiors of the bins are each 11″ wide.
Identical design to the first one, just with different dimensions. The bins are each 14″ wide inside. Click on the model below to activate rotation.
Here are the quotes for each size with materials and labor costs broken down. These quotes are for a solid pine toy bin stained in the color of your choosing and sealed with polyurethane. The “shop fee” in the breakdown is a surcharge of 15% of my costs to offset consumables like glue, sandpaper, standard hardware, etc. My labor rate (before discount) is $20/hr.
Note: The labor line item is an estimate, but the number isn’t going to change. I know how long different phases of a build should take and can estimate an ideal build time. Things almost always go longer because of kids, life, etc., but I’m not punching a clock and then billing you or anything like that – it’s just the process I use to figure my pricing.
Let me know if you have any questions. Sarah mentioned you were looking at this for Christmas, so no pressure to get back to me with a decision quickly.
Also, this is a type of project where I am fully aware that I can’t compete on price with similar-looking mass-produced products readily available at Walmart, Target, etc. No worries whatsoever if you decide you’d rather go that route.