Upcycling – make a new wooden lid for your old biscuit tin

A biscuit tin with a DIY wooden lid and a Christmassy feel.
Pyrography gives the wooden lid that personal touch.

  • Difficulty
    easy
  • Cost
    < 42 £
  • Duration
    1-3 h

Introduction

Just like a tin isn’t complete without its lid, it’s not truly Christmas until the smell of that first batch of fresh Christmas biscuits wafts through the house. And speaking of lids: if you ever find that the lid to your Christmas biscuit tin has become lost in the depths of the Christmas decoration box or discover that it has been dented, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered – with a step-by-step guide on how to make a personalised, and above all sustainable, wooden lid with a custom inscription. Not only will your Christmas biscuits be safe from sugar addicts, they’ll complement your Christmas decorations perfectly, too. Keep reading to find out just how easy it is make your very own biscuit tin lid.

Have you heard about our 12-volt system yet? It offers a very wide variety of devices for many uses. The thing that makes the project below so special is that you can use the same rechargeable battery for every part of this project. Simply swap out the battery pack, insert it into a different device that is part of the 12-volt system and continue to the next step.

It should go without saying that your safety is paramount throughout every step of the project, so make sure you take the necessary precautions to protect yourself. You can find everything you need to know about the correct protective clothing you need when using each type of tool in our overview.

You need
Utilities
  • pencil
  • pocket rule
  • g-clamps
  • Pyrography pen
  • ruler
Materials
  • Old biscuit tin
  • Beechwood board, glued wood, 18 mm thick (large enough so that two biscuit tins fit on it)
  • Old, used leather belt
  • 2x screws (12 mm)
  • 4x Schrauben 3,5x30 mm
  • Scrap wood board
L: Length, W: Width, H: Height, D: Diameter

Let's go - step by step

Step 1 8

Measuring out the small board for the lid

The inner dimensions of a biscuit tin are being measured using a pocket rule.
Measurements are being transferred to a wooden board using a ruler and pencil.

You need: pencil, pocket rule, ruler, Wooden board, Old biscuit tin

First, you need to take a few measurements to make sure that your new, stylish lid also fits perfectly on top of your old biscuit tin.

To do this, measure the inside (!) of the existing tin with a pocket rule (image 1) and note down the values.

Transfer these measurements to a wooden board (image 2). Watch out: factor in the thickness of the saw blade when marking out the measurements so that you don’t saw off too much later.

Step 2 8

Measuring out the large board for the lid

The outline of a biscuit tin is being traced onto a wooden board.
The outline of a biscuit tin is being traced onto a wooden board.

You need: pocket rule, pencil, Old biscuit tin, Wooden board

Your lid will consist of two small boards. To obtain the exact measurements of the second board, simply place your tin on a wooden board and trace around the edges with a pencil.

Step 3 8

Sawing and sanding

A wooden board is being sawn along pre-drawn lines using a circular saw.
The sawn curves on a wooden board are being sanded smooth using a multi-sander.

You need: Hand-held circular saws, Multi-sander, Sanding sheet, g-clamps, Wooden boards from step 1

You can now saw the two rectangles you’ve marked out to length (image 1).

Once you’ve done that, it’s also then worth sawing all eight corners with a slant. This will make it easier to round them off when you’re sanding them (image 2).

Have you managed to saw all the boards? Then sand all of the sides and cut edges. You can sand the slanted corners so they’re nice and round to give the lid a premium look (image 3).

Step 4 8

Marking the slots for the leather strap

The width of a leather belt is being measured using a pocket rule.
Measurements are being marked in the centre of a wooden board using a pencil.
Lines are being marked in the centre of a wooden board using a pencil and a ruler.
Lines are being marked in the centre of a wooden board using a pencil and a ruler.
Lines are being marked in the centre of a wooden board using a pencil and a ruler.

You need: pencil, protractor, Leather strap, Large wooden board from step 2

For this step, you’ll first need the larger of the two wooden boards. A leather loop made from a belt will be attached to this later.

This requires two slots to be made in the centre of the board.

To do this, first mark the positions for the slots – the width of them depends on the width of the belt you plan to use as the loop.

Measure the width of the belt and note down this value (image 1). Then, measure out the centre of the larger of the two boards from step 3 (image 2). Next, mark out two lines next to this marked centre point parallel to the two long sides of the board (images 3 and 4). The length of the lines corresponds to the measured width of the leather strap (image 5). The two lines are each about 3 mm away from the marked centre point.

Step 5 8

Drilling the slots and recesses

A hole is being drilled along a pre-drawn line on a wooden board using a drill.
Several holes are being drilled along a pre-drawn line on a wooden board using a drill.
Two round gaps are being drilled into the underside of a wooden board using a Forstner drill bit.
Two round gaps are being drilled into the underside of a wooden board using a Forstner drill bit.
Two round gaps are being drilled into the underside of a wooden board using a Forstner drill bit.

You need: Cordless drill/driver, Brad point drill bit, 25 mm Forstner drill bit, g-clamps, Scrap wood board, Large wooden board from step 5

It’s now time to drill – not saw – the slots.

To do this, clamp the board firmly to your workbench using G-clamps (with a piece of scrap wood so that you don’t drill into your workbench).

Now, drill along the markings for the slots. Put the holes together so that they combine and form a wide gap (images 1 and 2).

You can remove any little bridges that might still be present after you’ve drilled the holes by moving the drill back and forth.

Next, turn the board with the slots over.

Change the bit on your drill to a Forstner drill bit.

Position this to both the left and right of the slots (image 3) and drill two slight recesses (image 4). The two circular recesses should overlap and more or less form a figure eight shape (image 5).

Step 6 8

Decorating the lid

The words ‘cookie box’ are being inscribed into a wooden board using a pyrography pen.
You can inscribe whatever you choose on your lid.

You need: Dremel VersaTip Butane soldering iron, Large wooden board from step 5

There’s still time to give your lid a more personal touch before you attach it to the tin. For example, you can use pyrography to create a personalised inscription and make your lid especially stylish. In general, however, it’s completely up to you how you design your lid – you can also use glue and paint, so get creative!

Step 7 8

Attaching the leather strap

A leather strap is being threaded through two slots in a wooden board.
A threaded leather strap is being tightened from both sides on the underside of a wooden board.
A leather strap is being shortened using a universal cutter.
The second side of a leather strap is being shortened using a universal cutter.
A leather strap is being attached in a drilled-out indentation of a wooden board with screws.

You need: Cordless drill/driver, Suitable bit set, Cordless screwdriver (IXO), Cordless screwdriver cuting adapter, Leather strap, Large wooden board from step 6, 2x screws (12 mm)

Back to the loop:

Thread the belt through the two slots so that a loop forms on the top (image 1). Make the loop as long as you want the handle for your wooden lid to be later.

You now need to shorten the longer ends (the ones you pulled through). Cut them to length so that they fit into the recesses you drilled earlier (images 2–4).

Then, turn down the two protruding ends away from one another and fix each of them with a screw (image 5).

Step 8 8

Screwing the boards together

A hole is being drilled in a wooden board.
Two wooden boards are being screwed together at the corners using four screws.

You need: Cordless drill/driver, Suitable bit set, Brad point drill bit, g-clamps, 4x screws (3.5 x 30 mm), Large and small wooden board

You first need to pre-drill holes before you can screw the boards together.

Doing this for the bottom, smaller board is enough. Drill a hole in all four corners. You can also countersink these from below (!) so that the heads of the screws sit flush (image 1).

Then, place the smaller board on the underside of the upper board. Make sure that you position it precisely in the centre of the board. It might be helpful to quickly measure and mark out the centre before doing this.

When everything is in place, screw both boards together using four screws (image 2).

You can now put the new lid on your old biscuit tin, not to mention look forward to taking it off again – those Christmas biscuits aren’t going to eat themselves!