My home-made Upholstered Pallet Coffee Table…

So i really love the pallet coffee tables you see around but refuse to pay the going rate which appears to be anything from £100 to £300 and beyond.


It’s a pallet and some wheels…seriously….!!!

I’ve also always been a fan of upholstered coffee tables

13-05-2013 11-33-14

… and couldn’t decide which I preferred so I decided to combine both!!!

To do this I needed a pallet (obviously!) and I found a lovely man on Gumtree that was selling them for £1! Bargain!!

So, to make an Upholstered Pallet Coffee Table you need the following ingredients (there’s probably a far easier way to do this but here’s how I did it):

Pallet Coffee Table Ingredients
Pallet Coffee Table Ingredients

1 x Pallet

4 x Legs or wheels ( I got a big baton of wood to make into legs but settled on wheels instead)

1 x MDF board to mount foam ( easier if same size as ‘intended’ pallet size)

Foam for cushion bit


8 x Upholstery Buttons + press

Spray Adhesive

Staple Gun

Sand Paper

Primer (regular old white paint), Paint (pink) + Brushes


1. Cut pallet to the desired size, my sitting-room is a bit too small for a full pallet so I cut it down the side of the middle posts, discarding the smaller piece.

2. Sand down the rough edges.

3. Paint pallet with primer and allow to dry.

4. I got a piece of MDF the same size as my cut pallet so I didn’t need to cut it!

5. Cut foam to fit MDF, i used a large carving knife/bread knife for this. I couldn’t get one piece of foam big enough so had to buy two and cobble bits together 😦 I put the cut sides inward so I could keep a nice straight edge on the outside.

6. Spray the adhesive onto the MDF and stick the foam to it ( I did a bit of a roly poly at this point to make sure it was stuck, totally professionally obviously!)

7. Once the primer was dry I was gonna paint it but I quite liked the white so for just now I’m leaving it white. I figure it’s easier to paint over that than bright pink!

8. Screw the wheels onto the bottom of the pallet.

9. Then comes the upholstery, which I’ve never attempted before!! So I lay the fabric on the floor, wrong-side facing up. Then i lay the Board+Foam on top (foam down). Then, starting in the middle of the long sides, I started stapling the fabric to the board. I did three staples on one side then pulled the fabric taut and stapled the other. I alternated each side until i was near the corners. Then i did the short side in the same way. I messed up on the corners but, you fold the corners like you would a present, tucking the excess in. I didn’t do so well with this, this is a better example…

Corner Folding
Corner Folding

10. Once that’s done I cut off the excess and tidied it up. Then come the buttons…

11. The buttons are pretty easy to cover and there’s a really good tutorial here

Button Cover Tool
Button Cover Tool

12. The came the task of putting the buttons in their final resting place!! 😦 First off, The whole entire time i was doing this (point to add, I actually sliced through my hands with the upholstery twine trying to do this 😦 ) I could have sworn there was an easier way to do this. I couldn’t find anything useful online. When I was done and trying to glean sympathy from my Mum for my shredded hands, she says ” There is, you use an upholstery needle” . Great. Fantastic. Good to know . NOW!!! How I did it was to drill two little holes in the MDF under where the button was to sit, taped the twine to a skewer, pulled it through, detached it, attached the other end and pushed that through the other hole and through the button loop. Then i knelt on the cushion and tied really tight knots to depress the foam (this is where the slicing happened). Lessons learnt: Ask Mum (not internet) prior to embarking on next DIY project, if pulled tight enough upholstery twine can remove the entire epidermis of one’s hand, there is such a thing as an upholstery needle and buy less firm foam next time.

13. The plan was to screw the MDF board to the top of the pallet but I’m still deciding on whether to paint it pink or not, so decided it would be prudent to leave sitting comfortably on top for just now!

The finished product (super proud)…

Upholstered Pallet Coffee Table
Upholstered Pallet Coffee Table

L x


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