Have you seen all of the fabulous projects that can be done with pallets? And yes, I am speaking about the same pallets you are thinking of - the ones that hold lumber and such, that get tossed behind stores.
I love this outdoor coffee table....if only we had a deck that was bigger than a postage stamp...
I've been adoring many pallet projects for a long time and decided it was finally time to embark in a project of my own. The living room is just about finished (hallelujah) and we only have two projects left - throw pillows and filling this wall:
I bought those butterfly pictures off WULSU (now Decor Steals) about a month ago and adore them, but they are too small for the wall. I had great visions, but they just didn't pan out. So Mr. Swell and I put our heads together (2 big heads, might I add) and came up with an idea to finally utilize pallets.
The next step was actually acquiring the pallets. I was determined to get them for free; they are basically scrap wood after all. I saw a few ads on-line but all of the pallets they were offering seemed really trashed. So we got in the truck and set out on a little journey. We live very close to a famous big box home improvement store and see scads of pallets sitting out behind the store all the time. I sent Mr. Swell in to chat up the customer service rep to see if we could get one (he's much better at that sort of thing than I am), but the answer was a big fat NO. Apparently even if we bought a pallet full of stuff we would have to pay for the pallet! Not impressed, so we carried on. We hit up the next home improvement store and surprisingly enough they were more than willing to give us their pallets. They said we could take as many as we wanted!! We restrained ourselves and only took 2 (more because there was a stroller and a baby sled in the back of the truck than actual restraint). So 2 pallets for free - that's my kind of deal!
The next step was some serious anger therapy. If you are having a bad day I highly recommend grabbing some free pallets and banging the crap out of them. We tried many different methods including a crow bar, a rubber mallet, a hammer and kicking them with all of our might, but the rubber mallet rose above the rest as the tool of choice for destroying pallets.
My apologies for the fuzziness of this picture. As much as I begged Mr. Swell to pose for an 'action' shot he was way too into destroying these suckers to stop and pose.
After all of the flat boards were off, we worked on removing the nails. Some of them came out with the hammer and others we had to saw off the pointy end and leave the nail head in - which I didn't mind because it added character.
Then I went about sanding all surfaces of each board with the palm sander. These babies were very rough, so a good sanding was very much needed.
I sanded them enough so that they didn't give slivers the instant we touched them, but not so much that they were completely smooth. Do you like the winter coat and flip flop ensemble? A true Canadian!
Here's how they looked after the sanding:
Well, that's as far as we got on night one of Project Pallet. Hopefully we can finish it up in one more night and then I can share the final result with you! Here's hoping our vision pans out on this one - I have high hopes.
You can read Pallet Project: Part 2 here.