Furnishing a home with wood furniture isn’t cheap. A simple wooden coffee table or bookcase can run a couple of hundred dollars. Yet, with a little creativity, some tools, and the right materials, wood furniture can be crafted to fit one’s needs. Simple, DIY furniture projects are in abundance online. But where does one begin? How about right up the street or around the corner? Yes, that’s right, I’m talking about materials that can be found in the alley ways behind most grocery stores….pallets.

Let’s begin with the materials: There’s a plethora of wooden pallets in any local neighborhood. Cheap and easily accessible, pallet projects are also gaining popularity online, as seen on Pinterest. Heck, pallet furniture is becoming so trendy that companies are popping up that design pallet furniture exclusively. But if you’d like to make your own, there’s plenty of inspiration to be found.

Some background on pallets: There are a couple of different versions of wooden pallets; the kind with a few wide wooden boards and the ones with many narrow boards. Depending on your project, you can probably find exactly what you need at a grocery store.

*Safety First: Some wooden pallets have been treated with methyl bormide, a chemical that is suppose to keep the bugs out. However, according to this TreeHugger article, checking the IPPC logo for MB (methyl bormide), or selecting Canadian made pallets that are heat treated is a safer option.

Next, find some inspiration on Pinterest or 101 Pallets. Pinterest has lots of furniture ideas, like coffee tables, bed frames, and seating, as well as many outdoor projects. From wall shelves to vertical planters, smaller projects might be a great entry-way into larger, furniture projects. As seen in the sample below, you also don’t have to stick to the rustic look of most pallets – sand, paint, and varnish to make it exactly what you crave.

Finished Pallet Coffee Table from Design Finch

Finished Pallet Coffee Table from Design Finch

Finally, if you’re not sure about making DIY furniture, try turning a pallet into a piece of art. Paint a slogan, make a statement, use it as a conversational piece – turn a shipping pallet into something other than tomorrow’s trash.

Pallet Art

Pallet Art

Have you experimented with DIY furniture or pallets?