Find a pallet. They’re everywhere! You just need to know where to look. At Dunn Lumber we return some of our pallets for reimbursement (like you used to be able to do with glass bottles), but we often have pallets lying around, so always feel free to ask!
We found this awesome blog post from Apartment Therapy that covers everything you need to know about pallets! She tells you where to find them, which to take and which to leave behind, and how to clean and dismantle them.
Now that you have your pallet you can start the makeover. If you need to clean your pallet give yourself a few days and make sure that it’s completely dry before you start anything else.
We started out by cutting off the top third of the pallet. We cut the outside 2x4s with a circular saw, but to uphold the integrity of the middle piece we used a handsaw. All pallets are a little different, so use your judgment on where to cut. Figure out where you want to add or maybe remove boards. Use your imagination and go crazy!
We pried off three pieces from the discarded part of the pallet and added a top, bottom and a board in the front. Dismantling takes a fair amount of work, but nothing you can’t handle. Make sure you’re careful when you’re dealing with all those rusty old nails and staples. Prior tetanus shots are always advised. On some of the boards it was hard to wedge the crowbar in far enough, but this problem was solved with a wide chisel and a hammer.
Now grab some nails and start securing the boards on to your coat rack. If any of the boards are split at the ends make sure you get a nail in each section so the crack can’t grow and wreck your project.
If your pallet needs sanding, now is the time. We tested the stain on the discarded part and decided that sanding wasn’t necessary. Lay out your drop cloth and stain away! The threads in the staining cloth tended to snag on the rougher sections, so we opted for a foam brush. Make sure you follow the instructions for the stain that you’re using.
After the stain has dried you can add the hardware. We used six single hook hangers and measured each side of the pallet separately. Pallet wood can be very hard and hardware screws generally aren’t, so we predrilled holes. Place each hook where you want it and mark with a pencil through the screw holes. Set the hooks aside and drill through all your pencil marks with a drill bit slightly smaller than the hook screws (the packaging should tell you exactly what size of drill bit to use). Put your hooks back into position and drill the screws in.
You’re done! Time to hang up some coats!