When the phrase “I’ve been thinking” is heard around the store (or house), everyone runs. They know that I have come up with yet another project that will be complicated, time consuming and MESSY. So when I decided that it was time to do some upgrades to the shop, there was a hefty amount of grumbling.
For over twenty years there has been a small room on the side of the shop where we sold arts and crafts supplies. After a couple of decades, I “got to thinking” that it would be nice to give the space a new look. This is where the mess came in. One project led to another and what started as a simple update turned into new ceilings, lights, walls, and floors.
Most of our deliveries come on wooden palettes (which we’re happy to donate for your next DIY project – please help yourself if you see a stack outside the shop by the dumpster) and with a little elbow grease this inexpensive wood can be turned into stunning furniture or decoration. Below is how we turned it into a rustic wall covering perfect for our new craft room.
Palette wood can be very rough. When you’re handling it, protect your hands by wearing gloves and watch out for nails or loose boards.
Confession – We tried to take the palettes apart with a pry bar and hammer but it was very labour intensive. Plus it’s HOT this time of year so we ended up using a reciprocating saw to cut them into pieces.
Once we had all the boards I sanded them down with 60 grit paper. This got rid of splinters, loose pieces of wood and surface dirt (palettes can get pretty grimy). 60 grit paper is pretty rough so the palette wood kept its imperfect charm but was easier to colour wash. Again, save your fingers and pick up an orbital sander.
Even since our first shipment of Chalk Paint® By Annie Sloan arrived in January, I have been painting everything in sight. I love Chalk Paint® because it’s easy to work with and super versatile. Since my favourite colour is grey and I wanted to make the wood a bit more interesting, I thinned out Paris Grey with 50% water to create a wash and painted it on the sanded boards. You can still see the wood grain but the colour is richer.
After many a debate on how to arrange the boards on the wall, we decided on this angled design (because I have to make it complicated). We also learned that lining the walls is a bit trickier than I had originally anticipated. Here are some tips below so you learn from our mistakes.
- First of all, paint the wall behind your palettes in a complimentary colour. You will end up with gaps and the background colour will show through. The rest of the shop wall are grey so this worked out perfectly.
- Not all the boards will fit together well. This is where those puzzle solving skills come in handy. Dry fit each row of boards to see how they will lay on top of each other and swap out boards when necessary.
- Our walls are concrete so a regular nail gun was not powerful enough to pierce the wood and the wall so we ended up sticking boards to the wall with Loctite Power Grab and a few strategically placed nails we hammered in. We started with Liquid Nails but it had a very strong smell.
Don’t forget to check back! Don’t tell my husband but “I’ve been thinking” about DIY galvanized pipe shelving!