One of the things I was most looking forward to when we moved from London in July was having an actual garden. Some outside space, something we had never managed to achieve in London. It goes without saying that having a garden has been amazing for the kids. Wills is an outdoor boy through and through, and you’ll find him in the garden in pretty much all weather. Amelia’s a little more accustomed to the indoors, but is still at her happiest rooting around her shed/play house for dress up outfits, musical instruments, and anything else she can be creative with.
But it’s not just the kids who have benefitted from the outside space. I’ve always been interested in simple woodwork and DIY, but have never wanted the mess that goes along with it inside my house. Since moving, I’ve been making the most of the garden and garage space, and have got my (few) tools out to put together some creations for the kids and the house.
I noticed there were a few shops locally that had lots of pallets in their yards, and after chatting with them found that they were happy for me to have them. Even better, they were happy for me to have them for free! I started with some quite big projects in the summer. Mr C and I both wanted a bar, so I drew a very basic design and got cracking. Then I built the kids a rudimentary little playhouse, which now houses their play kitchen. They spend a lot of time up there, making me pretend cups of coffee and mud pies!
A couple of weeks ago, looking around our living room I decided that we seriously needed some shelving. It felt like the room just needed a bit more warmth. I had some pallet wood left in the garden, so I decided to see what I could create while Wills had his lunchtime nap.
These shelves took literally no time at all. Their slight blue tint is because the pallet that I used had actually been a painted bright blue. Because I wanted to retain the character of the wood, I didn’t do anything drastic other than cut the wood to size and sand it with a power sander.
I knew that I wanted one smaller and one larger shelf, and I measured the wall before cutting the wood to make sure that my shelves would fit the space well.
I used an electric saw to cut the wood, which I picked up recently on a second hand site, but you could easily cut pallet wood with a hand saw and a bit of gusto! When I sanded the wood, I made sure to slightly round off the edges so that there were no sharp edges anyone could catch themselves on. Once I was happy with the finish, I used my dad’s old drill (thanks dad!) to drill a hole at either end of each shelf.
I made sure to measure the placement of the holes; 2 inches from the end of the shelf on each side, and in the centre. I knew this would be important for this type of shelf to balance well once I hung them.
Finally, I added the rope, tying a simple knot in each end. They were super simple to hang, too! Just a strong picture hook did the trick, and neither of the shelves have moved a millimetre since I hung them. I’d call that success!