Storage Giant’s Guide to Up-Cycling Old Suitcases

Storage Giant | 17 June 2013

With programmes like Super Scimpers and Kirsty’s Homemade Vintage Home constantly on our screens, it’s no wonder that everyone is so interested in up-cycling at the moment. For those of you who are not quite up to date with the latest television designers craze, up-cycling is very similar to recycling, but the aim of the game is to add value to the item rather than just finding a new use for it. A good example would be mending an old table and painting it, rather than throwing it out.

However, today it’s not old tables we are looking at but old suitcases. Here I have put together a collection of my favourite suitcase-cum-furniture up-cycling ideas for you to try at home, all perfect for livening up your old and forgotten suitcases.



First on our list is the suitcase-cabinet, which is a natural use for a case as it has a readymade door! If you decide to try this out then make sure you screw the suitcase into the wall securely (probably best to use wall plugs), especially if you plan to turn it into your drinks cabinet!


 Practical-6 Suitcase-cupboard-4  Suitcase-cupboard



This is a really good project for people who aren’t really into DIY (like me). Find an old table that is about the same size as your suitcase (flea markets are good for this, I got mine from the Rose Street flea market in Roath) and take the top off (I used a crowbar!). Then all you have to do is screw your suitcase onto each corner and voila, your very own vintage suitcase table. Below are some examples to get you started.


Table-1  Table-2  Table-4



I have called this section ‘practical uses’, but really, all of the ideas I have mentioned are very practical! I especially like the suitcase that has been transformed into a sewing box by gluing bead pots into the lid (I would suggest you use something quite strong like No More Nails for this). The cat bed is also a good example of how you can make use of a broken suitcase. As Kirsty Alsop always says “Don’t allow yourself to be told what something’s use is, think yourself what the alternative use could be”.


 Practical-1  Practical-4  Practical-2



Finally, here are just a few examples of how suitcases can be used as decoration (with the bonus of added storage). The trunks are a really beautiful example of what a lick of paint can do, and the small cases on the wall are a fun and stylish way to displays all your favourite belongings.


Decorative-3  Decorative-2   Decorative-1


These images all came from a variety of different vintage boards on Pinterest, please let me know if you find any more contenders!


If you’ve had a clear out recently and are planning to embark on your own vintage DIY project, then why not leave your prized possessions with Storage Giant until you have somewhere to display your belongings. With storage lockers from only £5 a week, you can afford to leave your favourite belongings with us for as long as you need to.


Vintage up-cycled suitcase