5 Great Wood Pallet Furniture DIYs

5 Great Wood Pallet Furniture DIYs

0 1817
Coffee Table for the Man Cave

Pallet furniture is all the rage right now in home design and for several good reasons. Pallets are cheap, easy to work with, and they make really creative furnishings! Below are five ways to DIY pallets into amazing pieces for your man cave, once you have chosen a sturdy pallet:

How To Prep The Pallets For Your DIY Project:


  1. Inspect the pallets for warning signs of bacteria or harmful contaminants. Look for the words "HT" on the pallet; that stamp means it has been heat dried, which is safer than those not kiln dried.
  2. If you need to disassemble the pallet for your DIY project, then do so before you paint it. Remove nails and sand the pallet prior to painting it, as well, to remove sharp edges and splinters. Wipe the wood down with a wet washcloth before painting it to clean it.
  3. Prime your wood pallets first to give a more even finish to the paint you will apply over it.
  4. Finish with a coat of paint. Common choices are latex or acrylic (either work). Using a chip brush, apply between 1-4 coats; wait until the layer is dry before applying the next coat. If you want the paint to last longer, stain it as the final step.

For all of the five DIY pallet projects, use best safety practices. Always wear safety glasses and work gloves, as well as using common sense.

DIY #1: wood pallet room divider

Room Divider for the Man Cave

This project is great if you want to maximize your space; easily create different sections in your pad based around the shipping pallet room dividers. It is like having a wall, only you can take down the partition if you want to at any point in time easier than you could with a concrete wall!

DIY Cost

$71

Retail Cost

$200-300

Required Skill

Cost Breakdown:
  • Shipping pallets (free!),
  • hammer ($14),
  • nails ($5),
  • door hinges ($18),
  • sandpaper ($7),
  • paint primer ($12),
  • latex paint ($15)

The number of pallets you will need depends on the size of the piece you want to create; you will need at least six pallets to create two panels on the hinged area divider. The process involves nailing two pallets together side by side so they look rectangular.

These two panels form the front side of one panel on the screen. Add a third panel by securing it with nails. Repeat the process to form a second screen made of three panels. Attach the two screens you have created at the edges of the pallets with door hinges, following this easy-to-follow guide.

Lastly, paint the shipping pallets. Our painting tips in the "How to Prep" box above will help you. Hang art from the wooden slat with small nails to make the room divider even more unique. Perhaps your art will be NYC-inspired or have another fun theme.

DIY #2: Pallet coffee table

Coffee Table for the Man Cave

This rustic table is the perfect item to complete the lounging area of your lair. Put your mags, Wii accessories, coffee mug, and anything else you want on it. The table in this DIY project uses just two pallets. While you could get a table from a furniture store, why go generic? Get a totally original piece made with your own two hands! Plus, you'll save money by putting it together yourself.

DIY Cost

$107

Retail Cost

$200-350

Required Skill

Cost Breakdown:
  • Shipping pallets (free!),
  • hammer ($14),
  • power-saw ($50),
  • nails ($5),
  • screws ($5),
  • sandpaper ($7),
  • stain ($14),
  • varnish ($12)

Once you have the pallets, you need to remove the boards from them. Disassembling the pallet is essential because then you won't have gaps between the boards. Don't ruin the boards as you remove them, you want them intact! Hammer off the boards to remove them. You will find you accumulate a lot of rusty nails!

Sand the boards next to remove any rough edges and splinters. Once this step is done, you need to put the boards back onto the frame, only this time they are side by side. The width will be smaller now, without the spaces between the boards, so you can cut off the excess frame. You will likely find that the new width works much better for your coffee table. Screw the boards back in, using the existing nail holes.

Repeat the process for the second pallet. Then it's time to move onto making the legs, which you can make the height you want. This project uses legs that are 8.5in tall. Screw the legs to the bottom of the pallet. Now you're up to Step 6 in this comprehensive guide, where you can follow it through to the end. You still have to sand, stain and varnish the pallet table, but you're almost done your DIY project.

DIY #3: Pallet bookshelf

Pallet Bookshelf Tutorial

If you want a bookshelf that is cheap and durable, you'll like this next DIY project. Make your shelving unit out of shipping pallets (This project uses roughly 2-1/2 pallets) and use it to stack books, mementos from trips, sports memorabilia or whatever else you want to put there. The furniture is also great on a smaller scale in the kitchen as a DIY spice rack.

DIY Cost

$143

Retail Cost

$50-350

Required Skill

Cost Breakdown:
  • Shipping pallets (free!),
  • hammer ($14),
  • circular saw ($50),
  • electric sander, ($30),
  • tape measure ($11),
  • nails ($5),
  • wood glue ($7),
  • stain ($14),
  • varnish ($12)

Begin the project by dismantling the pallets, wearing safety gloves and glasses, of course. Once you have the individual boards separated from the base, measure each piece to get it to your required length. Where you make the cuts will depend on how big you want the bookshelf to be. Measure the available space in your lair before making any cuts with your circular saw.

Once you've made the cuts, you'll want to clean the boards to free them of the layers of accumulated dust! Use a soap-and-water solution in this case. Using a palm sander is the next step; it will save you a lot of time, rather than using sandpaper by hand to smooth the boards. 

Next, join the planks together with wood glue to make the shelves; the project shown in the above photo uses four cut pieces of wood per shelf. Create as many shelves as you want for the structure. Add a bottom support to each shelf with your hammer and nails; you can use the support beams from the original pallets for this part of the shelving.

Finish the DIY pallet bookshelf project using this nifty tutorial, with the next step being to build the backing of your future furniture piece.

DIY #4: DIY Pallet Shoe holder

Shoe Rack for the Man Cave

If you have a small man cave, you will appreciate this innovative shoe rack. It's vertical, so it takes up little room. Make it on a budget too out of free wood pallets. Depending on what size you want the rack to be, you will need at least two pallets.

DIY Cost

$94

Retail Cost

$40-200

Required Skill

Cost Breakdown:
  • Shipping pallets (free!),
  • hammer ($14),
  • circular saw ($50),
  • tape measure ($11),
  • nails ($5),
  • wood glue ($7),
  • sandpaper ($7)

As you did in the last DIY pallet project we guided you through, you will begin by disassembling the boards from the pallet. You are going to make a structure that looks similar to a ladder. A great size for our man cave would be 16in wide and 36in tall, so it will fit beside our dresser and be the same height. Measure your space before you make any cuts to the wood to ensure you make the shoe rack the right size.

As for the gap that you will leave for the shoes to go into, a 3in gap is a good size. It will likely be easiest for you to draw out the design on paper so that you can figure out how many rows you need to reach the desired height of the rack. You will have two long vertical boards (in our case they are 36in tall) and (number of rows) with 3in gaps between them. 

Secure the rows on each side to the vertical boards with wood glue and nails at the correct position. This in-depth guide will guide you through how to continue to put together the ladder-like DIY pallet shoe holder, including building and attaching an extension to lean the furniture against the wall. ​Lastly, add your shoes to the creative shoe rack and revel in the admiration of your buddies!

DIY #5: DIY Pallet storage chest

Pallet Trunk for the Man Cave

Whether you call it a pallet storage chest or a trunk, you're going to love this creative piece! You can be certain your neighbor won't have it in his house. You can use it for your gaming essentials as well as your remotes, extra cords, or whatever else you think should go in there. Keep odds and ends out of sight in this DIY trunk, which is made from two pallets.

DIY Cost

$534

Retail Cost

$250-600

Required Skill

Cost Breakdown:
  • Shipping pallets (free!),
  • hammer ($14),
  • table saw ($300),
  • power drill ($150),
  • reciprocating saw ($49),
  • tape measure ($11),
  • nails ($5),
  • screws ($5),
  • one piece of scrap plywood (free)

Firstly, deconstruct your pallets. A crowbar or reciprocating saw provides a way to remove the boards efficiently. Then build the frame for the storage chest. Begin by cutting three 1x4s down the middle and then cutting two of these pieces to the length you want for your trunk. Take a third 1x4 and cut two side supports, ensuring these two pieces hang over the sides of the smaller two pieces to form the frame.

Next, build a second identical frame, and put it aside until later. You will now want to cut your pallet boards to the desired height. Attach the boards to the frame with screws. It is easiest to complete the ends before moving to the front and back of the storage chest. At this point, you bring out the second frame and attach it, following the directions in this comprehensive online guide. Click the "Next" button on each screen of that guide to follow through to the end of the project.

Now you have the inspiration to complete five DIY projects using pallets! The projects are affordable (especially if you already have the required tools), straightforward to complete, and have great rustic looks. Plus, they are totally original, and each one fulfills a purpose in your man cave. Let us know how your builds go. If you enjoyed the post, then please share it on social media using the sharing buttons below!