How to Build a Simple Shelf From Pallets

7 Materials
3 Hours

I recently made a pallet wall bar with a drop down counter out of pallets, and had some pallet wood left over. I hate wasting wood or throwing it away so I wanted to make a project to use up the wood. My daughter requested a no frills shelf for her home for her modem to sit on. This is what I came up with.

Find wood

I am personally not strong enough to take a pallet apart so I used a jigsaw and cut the wood in between the supports. This is the wood I used for my project.

Clean up the wood

I build most of my projects from recycled materials which are usually in very poor shape. So I bought a wood planer to clean up my wood to save time. If you don't have a planer any wood sander will work. You just want to remover the rough surface to prevent splinters. I also cut away the rough edge on each side using a table saw.

Wood requirements

  • 2 x 400 mm (L) x 90 mm (W) x 10mm (thick) these are the sides.
  • 2 x 410 mm x 90 mm x 10 mm Back and shelf
  • 1 x 420 mm x 90 mm x 10 mm
  • 1 x 410 mm x 50 mm x 10 mm
Assemble the shelf

Start by joining the back of the first shelf and the bottom, do this for both of them. For a more secure joint, you can pre-drill a hole and screw the two pieces together while the glue is drying. I pre-drilled all the holes first because pallet wood is usually dry from being outside in the weather so it will split easily.

If you don’t want to have screws visible on the outside of your shelf you can use a nail gun to secure the sides.

Repeat the same process for the bottom shelf

Attached the bottom

Because the bottom would not be visible I drilled holes in each corner and screwed the bottom in to the side supports.

Add the last piece of wood which is the front support to hold the modem in place. Pre-drilled holes from below, then add some glue and screw in place. I secured the sides with the nail gun.

Add the hardware

Divide the front by 3 so you can have the hooks evenly spaced. Drill pilot holes and screw then in place.

This was my person touch. I made some vinyl decals using my Cricut machine and added hooks for their dog leads.

Complete shelf

And that was my simple shelf complete.

This shelf can be used in a few way. It can be a coat rack, key rack, hat rack, post rack just to name a few.

More great projects

Are you looking for ideas for your DIY house number. Here is one I made with a flower box and solar light.

You might be able to get your hands on a free piano on it way to the landfill and turn it into something new. I repurposed mine into a bar/ drinks Cabinet.

Resources for this project:

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Unique Creations By Anita
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Frequently asked questions

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  1 question
  • Teresa Teresa on Jul 07, 2020

    Did you also use a router to do the rounded edges on your wood, or did you buy additional wood.


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