793rd Way to MacGyver a Pallet

If you've been living under a rock, you may not know that you can MacGyver a pallet into anything...picture frames, shelves, furniture, a patio, a rocket ship...the possibilities are ENDLESS.  So, since the 4th of July was coming up and I was starting to feel patriotic, I decided to whip up a lil' pallet artwork:

I'm a LITTLE bit in in love with it.  I could stare at it All. Day. Long.  E is not so enamoured.  He was not a fan of the dirty old pallet when I brought it home in my trusty Sorento.  I told him about my plan to MacGyver it into something amazing and he just stared at me.  Then he went golfing (or to work, I forget which).

Anyway, I got to work pulling the boards on the pallet apart.

I used two hammers to pry apart the boards.  It took much longer than first anticipated.  Somehow, I took a hammer to the face.  I called it quits and had a bottle glass of wine after that.

The next day me and my black eye finished up prying the boards apart and started rebuilding the pallet with all the boards on one side.

I just screwed all the thin outer boards into two of the thicker support boards with drywall screws.  I lined up (not too perfectly) the nail holes on each end of the thin boards to be on the outer edge of the support boards.  I pre-drilled holes with a 3/32 drill bit and then drilled one 1-5/8 inch drywall screw on each end of the thin boards (2 screws/board) and...BAM! Pallet Canvas.

For the next part, you probably don't NEED to hang your pallet canvas on the wall, but if you want to copy me exactly my back was getting sore from working on the floor, so on the wall it went.

Find yourself a map of the Good Ol' USA, cut it out, and tape it to your pallet canvas.

Outline your map with some chalk (a pencil works too, but the chalk was easier to see) and remove it.

Grab yourself a paint brush (I used both a regular paint brush--for the middle--and a small foam brush--for the edges) and some paint (I used Rust-oleum's Painter's Touch in White) and have at it.  No need to be OCD with the painting if you plan on distressing it like me.

Wait a half hour or so for the paint to dry (it may or may not take longer than that, depending on the dryness of the wood) and start distressing!  I used 40 grit sandpaper wraped around a block of wood and sanded it by hand, but I'm sure you could use whatever distressing technique you prefer.

And there you have it...MacGyvered Pallet Art.  Simple. As. That.

**Linking this post to (all these sites have really nice buttons that I CANNOT seem to get to work when I try to add them, so for now I just have the list):


  1. this is so cool--I'm going to have to find me a pallet. On a map/globe kick in my boys' room and will have to see where I can fit this in. thanks for the inspiration! and if you have time I would love for you to share this at my linky party this week.

  2. That looks great! What a creative use for pallets.

  3. I love it. I also love the way you characterize it as McGuyvering a

    Come by and visit my blog sometime.


  4. Wow Kelly! I love it! You make me want to get busy working with the pallet in my yard today! Beautiful job and I love the way the map came out!

  5. LUV THIS, Kelly! And to think of all those pallets out there just waiting for us to rescue them and make them beautiful....!!! lol! :)

    xoxo laurie

  6. LOVE YOUR PALLET IDEA! Id love to feature it on my next revival monday if that would be ok with you please let me know.

  7. Thank You everyone for all the nice comments!

    1. Kelly- how heavy is this artwork? I showed it to my husband and said I wanted to do it, and he said he was worried about the weight on the wall. How did you attach it? It looks fantastic! Thanks!

  8. Ahhh! I'm so trying this! Thanks for sharing!!

  9. Visiting from Shabby Next. I've been dying to do something with a pallet! My hubby has a TON lying around so I'm totally going to snag some ;) Great idea. I LOVE It :) I'm a new follower.

  10. Too cool, really! I've linked this to my pallets post too, well done!

  11. ADORE this!!! My husband would kill me too, but I love it!!! Wouldn't a stairwell PANELED in this stuff with white paintings look awesome?>!

  12. I must live under a boulder.. it never occurred to me that a pallet could be used for anything but...errr ummm well whatever the normal use for a pallet would be (uhh stacking?).
    Now that I have thoroughly embarrassed myself I should probably leave. ;)
    (kidding about leaving! Im loving your blog! Just happened upon it today and not done paroosing just yet. Super cute ideas!!)

  13. I've seen this all over the web and I love love love it! It looks amazing and your tutorial sounds easy peasy. :) GREAT job!

  14. I just found your site and LOVE this DIY pallet art! So creative. I'm sharing this with my readers on my facebook page ~ You've got a new follower!

    ~Jenna, SAS Interiors

  15. Giddy giddy goodness! I love a new twist on Americana!!! You were one brave chica for taking on that stencil and ROCKIN IT! Maybe I will give it a shot...maybe with just my own state, on a smaller scale ( yep, chicken little that's me!)

    New follower :) Hope you give a REALLY Great Story about the black eye! Heal quickly!!


  16. I LOVE it! I'm on a palette kick recently, I'll be adding this project I think!
    d e n i s e

  17. Thanks again everyone, for all the nice comments! Now it's time to take a peek at all YOUR projects...

  18. So Cool! I just scored a bunch of pallets from a friend. I might just have to put this on this list. But, maybe, Virginia instead...

  19. I love this -- it actually fulfills two of my 'needs' -- I have fence boards I need to use for projects and I'm doing a vintage-travel theme in my husband's study at home!

  20. Wow, I used to date a Kelley Simon (with an "ey") - LOL. Love your style so had to become a member. Great stuff here. Stop by sometime!

  21. Love this map decor idea. You could modpodge the map on as well if you found a custom map!

  22. did you see that pottery barn totally poached your idea? they have a nearly identical wall art piece for sale! boy if you could only license your design to them, you;d be rich! oh well....get em next time!