As  I mentioned earlier today, one of my skills to improve this year is wood working.  However, earlier this year we had a dilemma, and I think the solution turned out great, so I wanted to share it with you.  I have a great low cost way to get some extra furniture into your house.

My wife’s family comes out every year to visit us form Pittsburgh (our original home).  Well every year up until this point, they have had to sleep on an air mattress.  Well this year, thanks to my wife working at a mattress store for a few months, we actually have a bed for them.

Quick side not, beds are high margin items, and employees get great discounts.  If you need extra cash, and a new bed, consider a part time job at one.  Get your cash, get some discounted mattresses, and move on.  Just a budget stretching side note.

Unfortunately, we didn’t have a headboard to go along with that bed.  Now we could have just left it, no one would have cared or said anything of course, but I was feeling like I really wanted to make something.  I discovered earlier in the summer that I liked working with wood when I built my chicken coop.  So I decided to build one.

Now money was tight, and I don’t have a table saw.  So ripping a big piece of plywood was completely out of the question.  So whats big, mostly flat, and looks great once its got a coat of pain on it?  Why pallets of course.  I made a headboard out of two pallets, and you can too.

Two pallets, 4 2X4 and a 4X4.

Two pallets, 4 2X4 and a 4X4.

The design is blindingly simple once you think it through.  First, you scavenge two pallets and paint them.  They are much easier to paint when they are still on their own.  Then you attach the pallets to each other so they form one long solid piece.  Thats the majority of your headboard already, and if your bed isn’t on a frame, you could use as is.  We just wanted to go a little nicer.  So  I Framed in the pallets with two by fours.  I started with the top, since I wanted to cut it long enough for an overhang on each side.  Then you cut the legs on each side, just cut them long enough to run from your top beam to the floor, and make it however tall you want.  Lastly, you run a last piece on the bottom, mainly for symmetry.  Then I went ahead and cut two little chunks of 4X4 just to offer some extra bracing on the bottom.  Total cost, about $20 and an hour of wood working.  Paint was cheap, but took a couple hours to dry.  Here is our finished product.

finished headboard

You literally can’t mess this project up, so go make something today.