Interesting local businesses ... Antique Crates

I love antique crates. The combination of graphics, rustic wood and of course the history gets me every time.

Antique Colman's Mustard crate from Antique Crates

I was lucky to inherit one of two antique Eaton's grocery crates that sat in my grandmother's cellar for decades. My dad cleaned it up years ago and its uses are almost endless. When we first got married it was a makeshift coffee table while we saved up to buy furniture for our new home. Today, I use it to store patio essentials such as candles, melamine dishes and wine glasses for summer entertaining (grab & go) and in the winter it corrals wool blankets.

an Eaton's Grocery Box inherited from my Grandma

Awhile ago I discovered a guy on Instagram who collects and sells antique crates. His feed is filled with crates and boxes and he has a warehouse with space dedicated solely to his collection, which he sells!

Antique Crates in Etobicoke

His name is Joe and he owns Antique Crates. I had the chance to visit in August after I reached out to see if he was interested in donating a crate to the Habitat for Humanity project I was working on for The Toronto Fall Home Show. He said yes. Such a nice guy! I ended up choosing an antique berry tray which I stained and tattooed to match my table.

Here's my table. It's an antique basin stand which I "tattooed" with slogans for social change in support of Habitat for Humanity. It was on display at The Toronto Fall Home Show in September.

antique basin stand and berry tray upcycled for Habitat for Humanity

antique basin stand and berry tray upcycled for Habitat for Humanity

I brought along my camera when I went to check out Joe's warehouse in the off chance that he might let me snap some photos. He did.  I thought you might be as intrigued as I was to poke around his collection. So, here are some photos from my visit. It's a treasure trove of crates that he has collected from all over. You can follow Joe on Instagram or visit his website for more info.


Antique Crates in Etobicoke - there are two rooms like this one filled with crates

stacked crates and old soda bottles from Antique Crates

Beautiful old labels and paint are intact on many of the crates

stacks of fruit trays and crates

lots of boxes + other collectibles such as old signs and bread boxes

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