How to Build a Wood Window Box Planter

Add curb appeal to any home by making a cedar wood window box planter. This cottage window box style is simple to build and install, and easy to customize to fit your home’s style.

Read more ideas for adding curb appeal, such as building affordable DIY wood shutters and painting your front door a fresh color

Custom cedar window box planter DIY tutorial

DIY Cedar Wood Window Box Planters for Cottage Curb Appeal

Hi, I’m Ashlea, a self taught builder, thrifter and huge sufferer of “I can make that” syndrome, I am sure you can relate!

Over on my blog, This Mamas Dance, I love to share furniture rehabs, home reno progress, and quick DIY’s that can be completed during toddler nap time.

Today I am going to show you how to build a custom wood window box that can be used all year long. This project can easily be completed in an afternoon and adds instant curb appeal to a home.

how to build a wooden window box planter

I thought long and hard about what style I wanted to build, and in the end I wanted it to be classic, yet versatile.

I live in a cottage style home, but this style of box could also work on a modern style home.

For the fall I am picturing large flowering cabbage, and in the winter mini “christmas trees” as you can see I added red geraniums for summer, and some creepy crawlers that will eventually fill in.

cedar exterior cottage home curb appeal

My husband and I recently built a DIY addition onto our original cottage, complete with a Cottage Style Family Bathroom, and Boys Bunk Room. I am slowly working on bringing the old and new together.

This DIY cedar wood window box ties in with the beautiful warm wood accents of our addition, and compliments the cottage style that I love.

DIY custom cedar wood window box with geraniums

How to Build a Custom Cedar Wood Window Box

by Ashlea from This Mama’s Dance

This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience.  Click here to read our full disclosure policy.

Cedar Wood Window Box Materials:

DIY Wood Window Box Cost

The estimated cost to build one cedar window box is $25 (depending on your local lumber prices).

That includes the cedar boards, the screws/fasteners, the interior brackets and the 2 L brackets to hang the box; it does not include the stain.

materials and tools to make a custom cedar wood window box planterTools:

How to Build a Custom Cedar Window Box Planter

Step 1: Cut boards to size

Cut fence boards to size. The length will depend on the size of your window. 5 ft cedar fence boards were the perfect length for my project, so I only needed to cut my side panels.

Be sure to check all boards are the same length before nailing anything. Sand all cut ends. My 2 side panels measured 9 3/4″. The 4 pieces of 3/4″ cedar square measured 8″ long.

step 1, cut cedar boards for custom wood window box planter


Step 2: Attach front board

Apply glue to front edge of bottom base board. Position the base and lower face board, hold in place with clamps. Attach lower face board to bottom using glue and fasteners.

Step 2, assemble wood window box planter


Step 3: Attach back board

Attach lower back board to bottom using glue and fasteners.

Step 3, assemble cedar wood window box planter

Step 4: Attach interior front supports

Attach 2 pieces of 3/4″ square to the inside of first face board using glue and fasteners, vertically and evenly staggered.

This will add additional structure to your wood window box, and tie in the 2 face pieces.

step 4, add supports for wooden window box planter


Step 5: Attach interior back supports

Replicate Step 4, by attaching 2 pieces of 3/4 “square to inside of back board.

Step 6: Add side panels and top front panel

Attach the top front panel and both side panels using wood glue and fasteners.

step 6, add front board to cottage style cedar window box planter

Step 7: Add support

Flip the wood window box face down. Attach a small corner bracket to the inside of the face front on both the right and left side.

This adds additional support to the front frame of the box, where finishing nails and glue are used . If you are using screws for the entire box, you can skip this step.

Step 7, add interior brackets for cedar wood window box support


Step 8: Attach top back panel

Attach the top back panel along outside edge and to center support pieces with wood glue and fasteners.

step 8, DIY wood window box planter back support

You should now have a finished cedar wood window box!build a custom cedar wood window box planter tutorial

Step 9: Drill drainage holes

Drill 3-4 holes for drainage in the bottom of the wood window box. I used a 3/8 bit.

step 9, add drainage holes to cedar wood window box planter

For longer lasting wood window boxes, line with either heavy duty plastic or box liners. You may also place a small piece of landscape fabric at the bottom to keep them from drying out too quickly.


Step 10: Finish

Seal, stain or paint your window box planters for added protection.

stain and seal DIY wood window box planters

Because I used a clear stain, I chose to finish the front with small finishing nails, so that I wouldn’t have screw heads showing. I also faced the boards rough side out for texture.

If you are going to paint or use a solid stain on your wood window box, you could use screws for this entire project- just be sure to pre-drill any holes to avoid splitting the wood.

I used treated screws for the back of the box, because they won’t show, and add a little more stability than finishing nails. If you choose to use screws, a little wood filler goes a long way!

custom DIY cedar wood window box with red geraniums

Step 11: Install

Install your cedar wood window box planters using L brackets or corner angles and lag bolts. You can also add corbels for support like Morgan and Jamie showed here.

custom DIY wooden window boxes tutorial

Related Reading: Tips for Planting Beautiful Flower Pots and Planters

I hope you are inspired to build some custom wood window boxes for you home. If you do, we’d love to see them on the Remodelaholic Facebook Page, or use the tag #imaremodelaholic on Instagram.

Learn to build a custom cedar cottage window box for just $25 each! Add year-round curb appeal with this easy DIY tutorial.

Please feel free to leave any questions in the comments.

-Miss Ash

More exterior window treatments to add curb appeal:

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Make An Easy DIY Wood Window Box Planter, Remodelaholic

Published 27 Aug 2016  //  Last updated 24 Sept 2020

Website | + posts

Ashlea is a wife, mother of 3, and blogger behind the Canadian lifestyle and DIY blog This Mamas Dance. Her blog offers a mix of tutorials, home building projects, coastal cottage style and a healthy dose of encouragement. When she isn't writing, rearranging furniture or feeding the small pack of wolves referred to as her children, she can be found teaching ballet or sipping a hot cup of tea.

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  1. We just did a big interior remodel, and now going to paint the exterior of our home. I love the blue color on your house. Can you please let me know the name of it?
    Thank you!