Wednesday, August 14, 2013

DIY: Step-by-Step Pallet Tray Tutorial

I think it's time for a non-school-related post, don't you? ;) Here's a little refreshing, fun DIY project post that I think you'll appreciate. 

I originally saw these lovely pallet trays on ETSY, and I just couldn't resist trying to make my own version for our coffee table. My final product doesn't really look like the original ETSY products (at all) but I was really excited about my little tray when it was finished!

1. Start with a pallet. Cut the boards to your preferred length. (My husband did this part. I'm just not brave enough to use a saw yet...)

 2. Use a sander to create a smooth finish on each board. I love using my little sander.

 3. Paint! I used this ah-mazing chalk paint. I wanted to create the a distressed, rustic finish, and I planned to use this paint to redo another piece of furniture for our house (more to come on that one later!!!). I thought it would be neat to have a matching accessory, so I used this paint for both projects. If you have never used chalk paint before, I highly recommend that you give it a try. It could become your new best friend. Just sayin'. ;) The really neat thing about this paint is that, after it dries, you use a damp cloth to create this uneven, distressed-looking finish across the surface. You simple wipe the cloth in random strokes, and it adds such a neat effect to the overall finish.

4. A little flair... I wanted to add a little detail to my tray. Call me crazy, but I decided to try using fabric as an embellishment. I covered one board with a patterned fabric and the fabric with modge podge. 

5. Add wax for the finishing touch. Once the painted boards were dry, I used this finishing wax as a final coat over the paint. It really brings out that distressed look that was already established using the damp-wipe across the chalk paint. You simply wipe the wax across each board using a dry cloth. A little bit goes a long way, and it adds a beautiful shine to the finish.
This picture really shows a comparison between the wax finish (left) and the plain chalk paint (right).

 This is what all of the pieces looked like after adding the wax.

 6. Put it all together!!! These pieces formed the base of the tray.
From this, I added the thinner wood pieces across the ends and sides. Simply attach those with wood screws through the bottom. The metal handles were added last. (I bought those at Hobby Lobby.)

That's all! What do you think??