Rustic, Modern, Reclaimed & Free: 13 DIY Pallet Projects

The lowly pallet: it’s just disposable packaging made of sub-par wood, right? Nope – as these 13 (more!) stunning examples of pallet furniture reuse prove beyond a splinter of a doubt. Snag the high quality pallets used to ship heavy machinery or stone, which are often made of strong high quality wood like walnut, and you could turn them into a new headboard, dining table, bookshelf or even an entire accent wall with lots of rustic modern charm.

Tip: Seek out solid wood pallets that aren’t shipped from overseas to avoid chemical treatments, let them sit out in the sun for a week or two before using, and sand, sand, sand before recycling into new furniture.

Headboard

(image via: stylizimo)

Who would have thought that a DIY headboard could be as simple as leaning a pallet against the wall? Nina Holst of Stylizimo left hers natural for a rustic contrast against gray walls, bright white bedding and a stainless steel reading lamp.

Display Shelves in a Store

(image via: pinterest)

Cut in half and stacked, these pallets create a simple organization system for wares in a shop without any other alterations. The idea could be adapted for a drying rack in an art studio or plates and pans in a kitchen.

Coffee Tables

(images via: papernstitchblog, stylizmo)

A simple and practical coffee table is just four casters and a couple sheets of MDF away. Papernstitch Blog has a simple tutorial involving nothing but some scrap wood, hardware and paint, and Stylizimo features a version that has table legs and a glass top.

Platform Bed with Storage

(image via: apartment therapy)

Pallets on casters or legs make a super-simple platform bed with built-in storage; use four to six for a queen or king-size mattress (depending on the size of the pallets) or two for a twin. Want yours higher? Just stack more pallets. It doesn’t get much easier than that.

Child’s Bed

(image via: lori danelle)

LorI Danelle made this cute custom toddler bed out of two pallets with closely-spaced slats. Bolts, screws, a piece of lumber and some casters make up the rest of the supplies. Since pallets can be roughly textured, this project definitely involves lots of sanding for a smooth kid-safe result.

Accent Wall

(image via: poppytalk, bower power blog)

This is not your parents’ 1970s wood-paneled wall. The varying colors in found pallets are perfect for a rustic accent wall. Separating the boards from the pallets and removing the ring shank nails takes a bit of work, but the work is worth it as the wall can add lots of character to an otherwise unremarkable room.

Television Stand

(image via: bidouillageautorise)

For a variation on the pallet coffee table, use just a single pallet and use it as a television stand. The slots in the pallet are just the right size for DVD players, game consoles and cable boxes.

Bookshelves

(image via: die frau im haus, chris.shutter)

With a few added pieces of wood acting as shelves, two vertically stacked pallets attacked to a backing serve as a freestanding display that could be used for books and magazines, photos or collectibles.

Wall Display

(image via: ana white)

Don’t have floor space to spare? Try this trick to turn a section of pallet into a wall display. Simply cut a pallet into thirds and use a 1”x4” to create the bottom of the shelf. Hang it on brackets and you’ve got a simple wall shelf made of reclaimed wood.

Storage Crates

(image via: ana white)

Turn a disassembled pallet into a pair of storage crates with two feet of new 1”x12” lumber and a free tutorial by Ana White. Left raw, clear-coated or painted, these bins could be used to store toys, shoes, magazines or garden supplies. They could also be used outside for an easy way to move potted plants around your yard.

Dining Tables

(image via: readymade)

ReadyMade explains how to transform four pallets into a rough and rustic dining table with cut-outs for potted plants – perfect for outdoor dining. With some lumber, braces, gussets, rails and decent carpentry skills, you could have this table ready for dinner in a few hours.

Flooring

(image via: kinopio)

Sure, you might trip over the boards that stick up and keeping it clean might not be easy, but this photo is proof positive that using pallet boards as wood flooring is indeed possible. And in fact, someone with a lot of patience and dedication to using only free, reclaimed materials could do even better, ripping the boards to a predetermined thickness with a table saw to ensure a smooth result.

Chandelier

(image via: studiomama)

After seeing this prime example of pallet creativity, you might be inclined to ask, what can’t be done with shipping pallets? Designer Nina Tolstrup created this pallet chandelier for her ‘Studiomama’ product line.

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