By Anthony Galasso
Anybody can buy a bed, but how many people do you know who have actually built their own? Building something substantial with your own hands can show character, determination, creativity and the raw, rugged knowledge of constructing something one-of-a-kind. Plus, what woman wouldn’t love to continually visit your home full of great furniture that you’ve built yourself?
Fortunately, there’s a new creative trend popping up in homes all over the world that doesn’t require you to become a master carpenter, and we love it. For those of you who haven’t been exposed to it yet, of Iron & Oak would like to introduce you all to pallet furniture.
Pallet furniture has the ability to add a touch of masculinity to any room. Plus, it’s extremely versatile. With just the right amount of innovation, pallets can be transformed into beds, couches, chairs, coffee tables, shelves and more. They can be sanded, painted, stained or even screen printed. Also, the best part about pallet furniture is that, depending on how creative you are, they can be built with run-of-the-mill tools found at your local hardware store. Here are just a few of our favorite pallet furniture examples being put to good use — creating unique, manly living spaces that most women may also enjoy.
Bed frames are probably the easiest pieces of furniture to build out of pallets. Just throw a few pallets on the floor to create a simple, sturdy, unique bed frame with built in shelving. The only thing to worry about here are the amount of pallets you’ll need to compensate for how big your mattress may be. This is a great alternative to sleeping like an upscale hobo or cash-strapped frat boy with his mattress directly on the floor.
Additionally, adding a pallet headboard to your bed frame can help give your bedroom a bit more character. Feel free to decorate it or leave it be. It’s a matter of preference. Either way, it still looks great and the ladies will love it.
Pallet couches or chairs can be just as easy as bed frames to assemble. If you want your couch up against your wall, simply throw a few pallets on the floor, add some cushions and throw some large pillows on the back to create a great couch, using your wall as the couches back.
If you want your pallet couch to have a back, you can attach pallets vertically along the back of the couch, much like your bed frame’s headboard. If you’re able to, screw the back on at an angle to give your pallet couch a more reclined sensation. We’d recommend somehow reinforcing the back of your pallet couch with some sort of armrest. Be creative. Some pallet couches simply use more pallet pieces to build armrests while others have been seen with iron bars. Again, it’s all a matter of preference.
Also, while you’re at it, go ahead and use all that extra space under your new pallet couch for extra storage as well.
Pallet coffee tables are probably my favorite. They’re practical and seemingly easy to build. A common theme among these coffee tables, I’m noticing, is the addition of heavy duty caster wheels to the bottom of your pallet to create the legs of the table. This is a simple addition to your coffee table, making it not only look great but also easy to move around.
By stacking a few pallets on top of each other, you can create more storage space in your coffee table. Some have even been built with customized drawers.
Another optional addition to your pallet coffee table is to add a fitted sheet of glass to the top of your table, giving it a more elegant look and feel while also providing a flat surface to work on or preventing things from falling between the cracks.
Pallets can also be repurposed for great decorative shelving. There are a lot of examples showing off this concept, but I think this photo captures as much of it as possible.
By hanging pallets on your walls and adding wooden planks between the slats, you can create sturdy book shelves that are completely original. Additionally, these pallet shelves can also make great bike racks. We’d obviously recommend pulling out your stud finder and using large, sturdy screws for this job.
Just remember that it’s illegal to just take pallets from behind store lots or buildings. Even if they’re in the trash, it’s still considered stealing. It’s probably best to ask a store manager if you can take them first, or possibly buy them online. Uline offers some wooden pallets online for relatively cheap, although they’ll be brand new and won’t have that weathered, old school look. It’s a matter of preference though. Maybe you’ll like the way they look brand new. Plus, you can age the wood using vinegar and steel wool to give it a more rustic look. If you do happen to acquire some pallets from behind store lots or buildings, just remember to check for bugs or other creatures that you wouldn’t want in your home.
Another thing to be mindful of are splinters. Make sure to sand out any splinters your pallets may have even if you’re going for that rustic, shorty look. You wouldn’t want to have any guests over who end up injuring themselves on your couch. Even if it is a minor injury, you may never hear the end of it.
So there you have it. Break out those tool kits, boys. It’s time to get to work. The great thing about building pallet furniture is that it all comes from your own imagination. You can paint it, stain it, add legs or wheels, screen print designs or decorations, etc. You can also build virtually anything you want. Force your pallet furniture say something about who you are. Have some pride in your new furniture and enjoy! For more unique pallet furniture ideas, check out decoist.com.
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