This beauty was a long time coming.
Andrew and I have long admired all of the pallet creations that are popping up everywhere. We had planned to build a daybed out of pallets, so we got about 10 for free from Lowes and hauled them home for that project. That was about four months ago.
I had been reading more and more about the health concerns of using shipping pallets, due to the chemicals they're treated with and the potential dangers involved when keeping them indoors. But we planned to seal the pallets with SafeCoat (which is a poly used to prevent outgassing of these types of chemicals) so we felt okay about that.
Then we got them home and started trying to build with them.
For one thing, they were a beast to tear apart. And secondly, I realized that it would take a lot of time/effort to make sure everything was sufficiently coated with the poly if we couldn't tear them apart. So after lots of deliberation, we scrapped the daybed idea and Andrew just went to work trying to get a few good pieces that we could use for something else.
Like I said, there was no easy way to do it, so he just used his circular saw to cut between the nails and we ended up with a pile of pieces, anywhere from 8" to two feet long.
We had been looking for something to put over our mantel in the living room - something big and bold, but sort of neutral so I could change up the things around it from time to time without worrying about anything clashing. We just wanted an anchor piece - much like the shutters and mirror we had at our house in Charleston.
Anyway, this is the longest back story ever, but we finally dreamed up a plan to build a massive wall-hanging out of these pallets.
The first attempt was kind of a fail because when we put it outside to dry after we'd glued the pieces down, the sun warped some of the wood so that they wouldn't lay flat. And then the Liquid Nails didn't cure as a result.
Another month later, we tried again and this time it was a success!
We just cut a piece of plywood to size and then placed the pieces in a staggered pattern on top of the plywood. Once we got it how we wanted it, we went crazy with Liquid Nails, clamped it all down and let it dry overnight (inside this time). The next day, Andrew put a bunch of screws in the back to reinforce everything, sealed it with the SafeCoat and voila! It was hanging over our mantel that evening.
I love the imperfections of the wood and the varying colors. It's just such an interesting piece and we find ourselves staring at it, inspecting all of the details. I think it's beautiful.
And did you notice how wonderful it looks with my fall decorations?
Fall is popping up in other areas of our home as well, like the dining room buffet:
And of course, you can't forget about Henry and Harriet, who I brought home from Hobby Lobby two years ago.
It sure is happy around here :)