Even if you can’t line an entire closet with cedar planks or panels, there are easy ways to use cedar to protect your keepsakes. Many of us have treasured family keepsakes from weddings or christenings made of delicate fibers such as angora, lace or silk. It can be difficult to find room in your house to store these items, especially when closets never seem to be big enough to hold everything we need.  And since Mawmaws generally have many different people to leave her old cedar chest to, it’s not likely that ALL of us were lucky enough to inherit it. So how to “make do?” 

Looking beyond our packed closets, the price tag can be daunting for a new chest of drawers ($500 to $1,500) or a completed cedar chest ($350 to $500). But it’s easy to turn an unfinished chest or toy box into a cedar-lined memory chest. The box is small enough to fit into tight spaces. And the Aromatic Eastern Redcedar liner naturally protects your special items from moth larvae that eat wool, leather and silk, as well as silverfish that like to eat cotton, linen, rayon and book bindings. It even protects naturally against dirty roaches.

You can use cedar closet liners to change an ordinary toy box or unfinished wooden chest into a beautiful cedar memory chest for special, delicate keepsakes. Simply purchase a simple child’s toy box online or even at an antique mall. An unfinished wooden chest will cost about $150 at an unfinished furniture store. Then you’ll need about two or three boxes of cedar planks, available at most major home improvement stores. Simply line the inside of the chest with the planks using sub-floor adhesive or nails. The planks fit together with tongue-and-groove joints, so this project will take a short amount of time.

Depending on the size of the box, the lid may become a bit heavy, so you may want to consider hydraulic closers (about $9) to prevent the lid from slamming shut.

Then, place your treasured items into the chest. The cedar scent will keep them smelling fresh for a long time. Every year or so, be sure to pull items out of the chest and lightly sand the cedar liners. That’ll restore the cedar scent and that keeps the bugs away, so your keepsakes are protected.  And wouldn’t that make Mawmaw proud!

For a list of retailers who carry CedarSafe products, visit our “Where to Buy” page.