My white trash (according to Dad) recycled pallet coffee table


I’ve been drooling over Pinterest projects involving upcycling wooden pallets for months. You know, the ones that home improvements stores use to haul freight? Those. And it just so happens that I did not have a coffee table for my new apartment. So let me just tell you the short story involving my acquiring these pallets.

So I know that you can get in trouble for taking pallets from the back of a store because some stores reuse them or charge for them. What’s a girl to do? Craigslist. I consulted Craigslist and found this guy in Lawrence who was selling pallets for $5 a piece. Reasonable. Okay. So we make arrangements for him to come to me and I made sure my roommate was going to be home because I’ve seen The Craigslist Killer. And good thing too.

So the guy turns into my apartment complex and I can hear him before I can see him. He rolls up in the shadiest I-promise-children-candy-and-then-abduct-them van. He was nice though. But that’s what they all say. He gives me the pallets, I give him ten bucks. And that’s that. Thank God.

I get home for the summer and inform my father that we are making this coffee table. And here it is in a series of photos.

Here is my pappy being a good sport and sawing the first pallet in half.

You’re the best, Dad.

Okay so here’s half of one pallet. Notice the wide gaps. My lovely father happened to have some spare wood that fit perfectly between the gaps.

I skipped a step, my apologies. Here’s the pallet with the spare wood nailed in between the gaps, but this is also after we had repeated the first steps on the second pallet, hence the stacking.

Now for some paint. I picked a nice mac ‘n’ cheese color that turned out waay more yellow than the swatch. Small town hardware store, what can you do? But I really like it. We painted the pallets separately and attached them after the paint dried. I don’t have a photo, but we attached the pallets with six steel straps similar to these, three on each side. We left them unpainted for an industrial look.

Here’s both pallets in the painting process. We had to move them into the garage and onto saw horses, because it rained that day. Which, by the way, is the ONLY rain I’ve seen this summer. 😦

Here are my casters. We attached them to woodblocks first, partly for stability, partly to raise the table up an inch.

I also don’t have a photo of the finished product. I’m really bad at remembering to take photos. I just get so into it. 🙂


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