How to convert old shipping pallets into useful furniture


Ever heard upcyling? Upcycling is a new term denotes to the practice of converting something useless into a useful one. One good example of it is the shipping pallet converted in to Do it Yourself (DIY) furniture.

One of the most common ways to upcyle old shipping pallets is to reclaim them as sofas or daybeds. To do this, simply sand the pallet until it is smooth then apply a coat of paint or varnish. Then cover them with comfortable blankets, cushions and pillows. To make it more comfortable to use, you can also attach wheels or stub legs to the underside of the pallet.

An old shipping pallet converted into a very nice bed

For a longer look, which is what you need to turn second hand pallets into sofas or daybeds, just screw two pallets together then follow the same instructions.

Second hand pallets can also be used to create other types of furniture. A coffee table, for instance, suitable for se both indoors and out. Simply sand and stain a pair of pallets, then use some noggins (a noggin is a piece of wood designed to fill a gap) to raise one pallet up above the other with a gap in between – perfect for storing magazines and newspapers.

Second hand pallets, similarly sanded and varnished, can also make the ideal headboard for a bed in a room with a rustic look. The reclaimed pallet becomes the centre of a colonial style, shabby chic room décor.

You can even use the second hand pallet to make a whole bed (it will normally be a single bed). Simply attach three shipping pallets and put on castors – then saw up additional second hand pallets to make the sides, the foot and the headboard of the bed.

It’s also possible to dismantle second hand pallets and turn them into various shelving options. By simply turning the pallet so it faces the wall, you can create a plate display. Plus if you saw it up and attach strips of pallet to your wall, you have an instant magazine or book rack.

Second hand pallets are useful to variety of things – from simple storage cabinets to huge furniture best for indoors and outdoors.

However, it is advised that second hand pallets should always be, carefully sanded and finished either with paint or varnish, or with both. This will bring up the distressed, weathered quality of the wood very nicely, and will also ensure that sharp edges and splinters gone for safety. By sanding and finishing the pallet will also make sure that living creatures on the wood like moss or other micro organisms are gone to avoid harmful spores and itchy bites on your skin. (Sarah James)



  1. Upcycling seems to me a whole concept to me and I truly enjoyed learning about it. Each year from my home we used to recycle lot of useless things and most are quite expensive when we purchased them. But the Upcycling way would be good if those things we managed to put together for a useful use. Thanks for great information.

  2. Very interesting concept and uniqueness of such concept pretty much impressed! I have never imagined old pallets can be useful as a furniture. This is a very effective allocation. I enjoyed reading though.

  3. Thats a nice idea, recycling old items like pallets. Im sure you could also build a pretty good shelf with them, it might not be as easy as the bed, but definetly worth a thought

  4. Bed, shelf, tables, chairs, basically all wooden furniture, you can make them from used pallets. Just add a little creativity.

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