My friend Lorene built the coolest cold frames ever earlier this spring. They look like she spent hours measuring and cutting and screwing wood slats together. But she didn’t. Instead, she built the frames by repurposing some old IKEA shelving units. Genius!
The sides of the cold frame are simply shelves from a corner unit from the GORM storage system. She used four foot long pieces of wood to form the back of the frame and another to join the sides together at the front (see below). If you don’t happen to have spare shelves hanging around your basement, you can buy the corner shelves new for $9 at IKEA.
Lorene decided to help preserve the wood by paint the frames a spiffy barn red. To keep the frame toasty warm inside, she cut rigid Styrofoam insulation to fit and then wedged them into the inside of the frame. She covered the top of the frame with a double layer of 4.5 mil clear plastic. To make the plastic easy to roll up, she stapled the end to a piece of wood (see top photo).
All in all, it is by far the best DIY cold frame I’ve ever seen. It’s attractive. It’s really functional. It’s super inexpensive to build. And it holds a lot of salad.
Lorene has a tutorial for building this cold frame—plus more photos of it—at her blog Planted at Home.