DIY Pallet Board Coffee Table


I’ve finally jumped onto the DIY pallet board bandwagon. Last week I finished up a pallet board coffee table to go in front of the hanging day bed on our pergola. Now…the girls and I did make a wall hanging of sorts for Britt for Mother’s Day a couple of years ago out of pallet boards…but I’d never made an actual piece of furniture out of these previously believed to be throw-away boards. That is until now.

Let me set things up for you.  Previously, all I had in front of the hanging daybed that I built several years back was some flimsy bench I made in my first attempts at using the handy-dandy power nailer that my sweet gift-giving-pro-of-a-wife had given me for Christmas.  But with it being so dinky and rickety, it barely served any functional value. And besides that…aesthetically it was both pretty ugly and next to the massive daybed…it was completely out of scale.

The other thing is…I really didn’t want to spend any money…err, couldn’t spend any money. We didn’t have a line item for “Furniture” in the budget…and even if we did, it wouldn’t go towards doing anything on our back porch.  So…bolstered by my recent success at making a potting bench out of old floor boards I had ripped off my porch and some other extra materials I had piled up, I went about the task of coming up with a creative solution.  And that didn’t take very long…

Having seen a ton of things built from pallets on Pinterest (yes, I’m on Pinterest…I’m secure enough to say that I am), I’d saved a number of pallets from shipments of stone and rocks…that I knew I could use someday…and that someday had come.

DIY Pallet Board Coffee Table - Redeem Your Ground |


Tools & Materials Used to Construct My Pallet Board Coffee Table

You really don’t need much to build a pallet board coffee table. Below is a quick list, but if you want to know more…like how I used these things and other tips, simply click here or on the image to the right.DIY Pallet Board Coffee Table - Redeem Your Ground | (Printable instructions)

    • 3 pallets for the table top
    • 1 8’ PT 4×4 for the legs
    • 1 8’ PT 2×4 and 1 10’ 2×4 for the surround & table top support
    • Tools and other materials:
        • Crowbar, hammer, and circular saw for the pallet demo
        • Wire brush to clean up the pallet boards
        • Broom…demo’ing pallets can be nasty work
        • Miter saw to cut your boards & lumber
        • 3″ deck screws
        • Nail gun & 1″ staples
        • Paint for the base and satin polyurethane to treat the top
        • And of course, a frosty beverage of choice and some smooth tunes to get you ready for relaxing in your new and improved space

Basic Construction of My Pallet Board Coffee Table

By looking at my coffee table it’s easy to see that the construction is very basic – there’s just a base and a top. I guess that’s all any table is really…but clearly my construction is quite rudimentary. Regardless, below you will find the basic steps I took to construct my pallet board coffee table. Again, if you want to know more, simply click here or the image to the right.DIY Pallet Board Coffee Table - Redeem Your Ground | (Printable instructions)

    • Determine the dimensions for your coffee table that will fit your space and your objectives.
    • Demo the pallets & clean the boards.
    • Cut the pallet boards to size.
    • Treat the pallet boards with satin polyurethane…this will allow your coffee table to last longer without making it look too slick.
    • Construct the Base:
        • Cut the 4×4 into equal sized pieces to make the legs…whatever height you want your table to be.
        • Cut the 2×4’s to size to make the surround of the base…4 pieces (mine were 2 4’ long segments and 2 segments that were about 32” long…making my base about 3’x4’).
        • With 3” deck screws connect the 4 2×4 surround segments to the 4 4×4 legs.
        • Cut another 2×4 to size as support for the table top. Attach it to the surround so that the 2×4 runs perpendicular to the table top pallet boards.
    • Paint the base and let it dry. Wanting to add a pop of color to our otherwise gray pergola area, we chose to paint the base red. (Originally I had planned on painting the entire table red…but after seeing how great the wood looked, I thought it would be a shame to cover it up. Besides…painting the entire table red would have been more like an explosion than a pop.)
    • Add the table top by evenly spacing the pallet boards on top of the base…and nailing them into place.

DIY Pallet Board Coffee Table - Redeem Your Ground |

That’s it…you’re done.  All that’s left now is enjoying your outdoor (or indoor) space that much more.  Again, if you want to see a more detailed materials list click here or a more detailed instructions sheet click here.


This project was so easy…I’m really very pleased with how it turned out…and so are Britt and the girls. We’ve already had an all-family hang-time in the daybed…with our new pallet board coffee table providing all the space we needed to put our drinks, snacks, homework…whatever. It adds that dash of color we wanted…and…AND , because I used pallets and lumber that I already had…it was free!  That is, except for all the friggin’ paint I had to buy (to know what I mean by that, look at the detailed instructions sheet). I’m now looking even more forward to hanging out in this space with the addition of my new pallet board creation.DIY Pallet Board Coffee Table - Redeem Your Ground |

What have you made out of pallet boards? I’d love to be inspired to do something else…so please let me know.

Take care,
Doug initial

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  1. Jen on August 9, 2014 at 11:48 pm

    Cool table! We made a headboard out of pallets for one of the boys’ rooms. However, we had to sand that thing forever so it wouldn’t have splinters. How did you get away with not sanding? Are pallets not all created equal?

    • Doug Scott on August 10, 2014 at 12:23 am

      Thanks Jen…and no, I didn’t have to sand my pallet boards down. And so no…all pallets are not created equal. I chose the 3 pallets that were the smoothest in my pile…and likely the oldest…already worn down. I passed up on a few that were very rough. Clearly, adding a sanding step to this project…and a lot of it…would have effectively doubled the amount of effort. And I didn’t want to do that. I’ll probably end up making something out of those rougher pallets that will hang on the wall or something so that it doesn’t matter if they’re rough or not. Take care friend, D.

  2. Helen Barco on August 12, 2014 at 9:10 am

    Douglas, We are so proud of you and your ability to create such neat things! When you were growing up we thought you were allergic to tools.

    • Doug Scott on August 12, 2014 at 12:25 pm

      Awwshucks Mother-o-mine! I’m no master craftsman, but I can get away w building things outside that are supposed to be rough-looking. xx, D.(oug(las))

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