For father's day I wanted to surprise my boyfriend with something unexpected and special (not to mention fun that we can all enjoy!) Since we had been talking about buying a bar for the outdoor area but they were all so expensive I looked up some Pinterest ideas and set to my plan in motion. I picked up 4 free pallets from my mothers job, and used wood and molding we had in the garage from a friend who moved and knew I would want it. I waited until my boyfriend was doing a 48hr shift and got to work.
Step 1: Set Up
I am a huge fan of setting up and having all my materials available on hand, makes me feel somewhat like a professional. I put a plastic tarp down first because I knew I would be painting and didn't want to get any on the deck and plastic is easy to rip out from under it because I figured it would be a little to heavy to move once finished.
Step 2: Sawing and Drilling
To make it easy on myself and thankfully the pallets were the right height I attached 3 pallets together using 2 thick pieces of wood I had from my garage. I used deck screws for this but I did need some assistance, I didn't anticipate how hard it would be to get the main pieces screwed in but thankfully my neighbor was around and able to help (that's handy Dave in the picture) who actually ended up being a money saver on the
next step but I will get to that in a moment. Using all random pieces of wood with very little sawing I was able to make a long shelf the whole length of the bar and then a smaller one. I had visions of a wire basket for things like straws and bar stuff but time ran out. Definitely next summer. The actual process of attaching the pieces together took less than 4hrs.
Step 3: Bar Top
I wanted to use something a little different than wood for the bar top and when I expressed this to my neighbor (handy dave) he said had some leftover light grey Italian tile from a job he had done in the past and offered me a case (4pieces) for free! (Side note: I measured the tiles and built the bar around them because I don't have any tools to cut tile and it's much easier to cut wood hence using only 2 1/2 pallets for the bar) I jumped on the offer and ran to home depot to get some Durock, trowel, thinset, paint and grout (my total was around $55). I love the Home Depot guys in my local store and almost always adhere to their suggestions. They advised me to use a darker shade of grout than the tile because from time, dirt and grime etc it would look dirty if too light a shade. Also they told me to use deck stain since it was made for outdoor use and wouldn't looked weathered or have to be sealed like regular paint. They were out of the grout in my color so I went to a local tile and flooring store where the man gave me a bags worth for 2bucks since it was a small project. I love using tile so this was probably my favorite part of the process. I unfortunately don't have pictures cuz I was a bit messy with the thinset (versabond). I have never used it before and I was like a 2yr old fingerpainting, make small batches because I wasted alot. I used 2 layers of plywood nailed together (cut to size) then Durock screwed into the plywood and pallets with deck screws. I added a thick layer of thinset to only realize I didn't need that much and had to scrape most of it off to make sure the tiles were even when placed. I put the drill and saw on the tiles overnight to set.
Step 4: Molding and Painting
Early in the morning I cut and painted all my molding. As a side note my molding was very thin so I used small nails to attach with a nail gun, I didn't want to make too many holes so I went every 12inches or so but needed to go back a week later and add more (every 6inches) because it felt a little loose. I packed in as much grout as possible and still have some leftover for future repairs if need. I then painted for about 3hrs straight (I am a little finicky with the paint strokes but it really wasn't necessary on this project since the rugged look was what I was going for) and it only needed one coat to get the color and look I wanted. I used only half a gallon of the deck stain so I have been using the leftover for other projects and eventually want to make a small cabinet for another outdoor area using the extra pallet and tile I have in my garage now. The next morning my project was finished but my obsessiveness with poly wouldn't be quelled until I did one quick coat. I love poly and had an extra small can from another project and used the whole thing applying with a ripped up shirt, basically the only way I use it. I did the whole bar in less than an hour. We weren't able to place any bottles on the shelves until the next day but we were able to enjoy mimosas on the bar top of our new bar to celebrate Fathers Day! Thanks for checking out my pallet bar!
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