Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Wood Pallet Wonders and a Gratitude Board

Hey all, how are you? So, I have casually mentioned that I spent my summer writing another book on working with and building with wood shipping pallets. affiliate link (You can get my first book HERE.) And, my second book is now available for pre-order on Amazon HERE

How did a second book come about and how is this one different?
My editor asked me if I had a second book in me. Interestingly enough, I had brainstormed new projects for another book a few months prior to her asking. I wanted this one centered around the seasons and holidays, but with projects that were versatile and could be easily changed up for other holidays and decorating. And... Wood Pallet Wonders was written. 
awesome book with complete directions and colored photos

The new book offers much of the same basic information as the first book--tools you need, where to find pallets, how to take them apart, paint techniques. Some of this information has been updated. The projects are all new and different from the first book and range from very simple to more expert builds (although if you follow me at all, you know I never build anything too complicated).

A few projects did not make the book due to a space issue, which in my mind is a better issue to have than not having enough material. One is this very simple gratitude board, perfect for the upcoming month. I thought I would share it with you now so you have time to get it made before November. I am sharing in more detail than I typically do, which will give you a nice example of how projects are shared in Wood Pallet Wonders, (LOTS of colored photos in the book!)
practice gratitude with this easy to make gratitude board made from a pallet

Gratitude Board  
I believe practicing gratitude and thankfulness can be life changing. As a family we try to remember to be thankful and grateful every day.  In November we like to find a way to share with each other the things we are thankful for each day.  This gratitude board is a great and convenient way to do that and it adds a nice pop of fall color to your home. P.S. I know someone is wondering why we are thankful for PICKLES.  Every August I can several quarts of dill pickles, but we don’t open them until November—they are a family favorite.
One small pallet (mine is 32” x 20 ½” )
1 5/8” screws
1 ¼” nails
6 feet of jute or hemp twine
2 hole D rings
White chalk
T-shirt rags
Saw, palm sander, drill, tape measure, hammer
Time: 1 hour plus dry time
Level: Beginner
  1. Using your preferred method, remove one board from the back of the pallet. Save the board.
  1. Measure the openings on the bottom of the pallet where the one back board is.  Be sure to measure each opening as they are often different.
  1. Cut the board removed in step one into two pieces for the bottom shelf boards, based on the measurement taken in step 2.  Mine were 13 ½” and 13 ¾” wide.

  1. Sand the pallet and the two bottom shelf boards well.

  1. Fit the bottom shelf boards in the pallet and secure them with four 1 5/8” screws per each shelf bottom, two screws on the front and two on the back.
  1. Paint as desired.  I chose bright colors and painted each pallet slat a different color.  I did not paint the vertical runner boards.

  1. When the paint was dry, I sanded a bit off for a more weathered look.
  1. To darken and mute the colors, I stained over the paint and the unpainted wood with dark walnut stain.  I use a t-shirt rag and a chip brush to apply the stain and I have a second t-shirt rag to wipe off any excess stain.
  1. Secure two two-holed D rings to the back with 1” screws.
  1. When the paint and stain are dry, clear coat the board with Poly-acrylic from Minwax or the clear coat of your choice.

  1. Measure and mark with white chalk (if you used a dark stain) at 1” and at 8” from the top of the vertical runner boards.
  1. Hammer a 1 ¼” nail on each mark made in step 11.
  1. Cut the twine into two 3’ pieces. Find the middle of one piece and tie it to the middle nail.
  1. Tie the ends of the twine on the outside nails, making sure the twine is pulled tight.  I left the longer strings on the end because I liked the way it looks, but you can trim them.
  1. Use cardstock squares and a hole-punch to tie thankful notes on the twine. Or you can use gift tags or small clothespins.  Keep all of the supplies in the shelf on the bottom so that it is easy for everyone to share what they are thankful for each day. At the end of the month, gather up all of the thankful notes and put them in a manila envelope with the year written on it. It is always fun to look back at the things you were grateful for in past years.
practice being thankful with this easy to make pallet project
Pallet Pointers :  Variations
This shelf can be used year round. Clip favorite photos to the twine or notes and memos you need.  Keep spices on the shelf and clip favorite recipes to the twine.  Remove the twine and use the shelf to hold wine, bathroom toiletries, or books.  Add a nail on the pallet slats on one side to hang a family calendar. Secure a binder clip to the other side for papers. Use the shelf to hold herbs in small pots. Place pint sized jars on the shelf to hold art supplies and hang inspirational ideas on the jute.

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