A Homemade Wooden Toddler Push Cart

The Luke babe has been loving his new little push cart that we made him for his birthday!  In fact, all the boys have been taking turns pushing each other around and having all sorts of fun with it.  I knew a few months ago that I wanted to get something like this for him but all the ones that I liked (read: simple and wooden without plastic neon noisemaking parts) were crazy expensive.  I'm kinda proud that we put this one together ourselves and it was so super simple.  I like it even better than the sixty dollar plus ones I was seeing online!  Aaaand...it cost us about $4.50 to make!

For the base we upcycled (doesn't that sound fancier than reused?) a great box that came with our Melissa and Doug wooden blocks.  I knew one of those boxes would come in handy some day!  This one was storing lightbulbs in a deep dark cabinet.  I bet you could use a wood fruit box or any sort of cool wood crate you come across.  The "wheels" were just simple four inch wood circles found in the wooden craft section of Hobby Lobby where I also found the dowel to serve as the axles.  The other wood for the handle was scrap wood we had in the garage that Brian cut and shaped.  The height is 20 inches (custom to fit Luke).

A view from the bottom
So simple, right?  I believe Brian bore into the wheel (but not all the way through) and then used wood glue to secure the axle into place.  The blocks to secure it into place were scrap wood.  They are attached to the box with two screws through the inside of the box.  The dowel we cut to about 13 inches.  Obviously everything we used we made sure to sand down well (though, as you can see, we weren't motivated enough to get that stubborn sticker off).   All the measurements are specific to this box.  The handle is pretty self explanatory and you can see from the pictures how simple it is! 

It was a family effort.  John Paul and I rubbed every inch of it with a homemade beeswax and olive oil finish.  We left it on for a day to allow it to penetrate the wood then buffed the excess off.  I love the finish it gave!  It's also much safer than commercial sealers.  In fact, when we were done, we rubbed the extra left on our hands right into our skin!

During the waxing

And done!

And despite the fact that the little stinker learned to walk on his own FIVE months before his brothers and after we had already planned this out, he really is loving it.  What child doesn't love something to push and tote things around in?

Please feel free to leave a comment with any questions.  I'd love to hear it if this inspires anyone to make their own! 


  1. I have that same box holding miscellaneous items on a shelf in my little boys's room! What a great idea. I'm going to show this to my husband. It would be a great gift for my littlest when he gets mobile.

  2. I'd like to hear more about the homemade beeswax and olive oil finish. That sounds like a great idea. I always worry about fumes from other wood finishes.

    1. Oh! I got that at this site here: http://weefolkart.com/?q=node/254 So simple...4 ounces of olive oil and 1 ounce of beeswax melted in the microwave. Then let it harden (or you can use it in liquid form with a brush). That's it! I only did one coat but I think it'd probably be better if I did another one or two. It made a bunch and I just used it again for a Christmas gift the other night!

  3. Oh, how I love this little cart! Great, great job!! I'm wondering if I dropped our block box off at your place if it would miracuously go through the same transformation...


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