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Friday, March 16, 2012

Train Pallet Art




Is everyone sick of pallet art?  Well, I kind of hope not, because I finally got around to making my own, and it's my entry for the American Crafter week 2--Kids.  Honestly, I struggled with what to make.  My husband said we should just make a kid ;)

I decided to go with my gut and knock out a project that's been on my list for a while.  I mean, I've had these pallets sitting outside since November, and it was time to do something with them already!

I realize that pallets aren't exactly original anymore, but I really love how this turned out.  And regardless of whether I make it through in the competition or not, I'm so happy that this will finally be hanging on the wall of my son's room.


Here's my breakdown:

1--Pull pallet apart.  **Wear gloves (and protective glasses are probably a good idea too)**
Just as people have said, this is hard work--and sometimes the wood starts splitting.  It was made slightly easier by using our Wonder Bar.  
Source
I didn't completely disassemble the pallet either, I just took the pieces I wanted (the skinnier ones) off of 2 pallets.  The older wood pulled apart easier than the new wood.  But hammering the nails out of the slats was easier in the new than the old wood.  Once the nails are out, sand all the pieces.  We're going for "rustic" here, not "deadly." 



2--Age the wood.  I used the method I've seen a few times online where you soak steel wool in vinegar for a day.  Then you make up a cup of tea and brush the tea over the wood.  When it's mostly dry, brush the vinegar over the wood.  Over a couple of hours it will darken.  Mine actually turned nearly black.  My tea solution (which I actually don't drink, so I bought super cheap stuff just for this project) was a cup of water with 4 tea bags.  My vinegar solution sat for about 3 days and was super dark and gross :)  




Weaker mixtures of both may give less black results, I don't know.  With the dramatic difference in coloring of my pieces of wood, it was nice that they all ended up pretty evenly stained in the end.

3--Assemble wood piece.  I put the wood out how I wanted it, turned each piece over, and screwed extra wood to hold them together.

4--Picture.  I found a train image I liked, printed it, and drew one inch grids on it.  


I then measured my wood piece and figured that the train would fit best with each square representing 4 inches.  Using chalk and a ruler I marked 4 inch lines all across my boards.


 5--Transfer image.  This is the scariest part, but after a few squares are done it gets really exciting.  I started out drawing with pencil first, but it was really difficult to see on the dark wood of course, and would be nearly impossible to remove later.  I decided to just go for it with the paint.  Matching up a square on the paper to the same one on the wood, I started painting the design with white paint.  It felt like it took forever, and by the time I was done, my neck was killing me.  (I get why artists use easels!)


6--Step back and let it dry.  When I was done painting, I walked away from it, turned around, and thought, "Wow, it totally looks like a train!"




Love the look but want a light version? Check out how I made foam look like wood!




  
(affiliate links)


41 comments:

  1. This is incredible AND so much work! Wow! It's perfect. I'm heading over to vote right now!

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  2. I love this! It looks amazing! I will definitely vote!

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  3. This is beautiful Steph! I love trains and this is just amazing! Thanks for the step by step! Going over to vote now :)

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  4. That looks awesome! I'm not sick of the palette art, in fact I've had plans to make something similar with wood planks and didn't think to use a palette! I am just stopping by because just saw on Be Different, Act Normal that you are also attending SNAP! I'm so excited to meet new friends! I just wanted to say Hi and that I told Lorie (BD,AN) that we're having a dance party in our room each night, so come on over!

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  5. Oh my goodness! I love it! I might have to copy something like that. I am so impressed Stephanie!

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  6. I love this! I would totally put this in my boys room!

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  7. Steph, OMG! I absolutely love this - you did such an amazing job! Maaaaaad impressed with your patience and painting skills! :D You have my vote (again!)!

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  8. Steph, this is wonderful. A lot of work and so cool. I bet your son loves it. Heading over to vote.

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  9. I loved your husbands suggestion. Aren't they fun? I'm married 49 years and mine is always cracking me up. Keep up the good art!

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  10. Looks GREAT, Steph! I went over and voted for you <3

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  11. Wow, this is fabulous! Great work, I'm off to vote for it. found you at Weekend Wander

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  12. Wow! I'm impressed. I loved how you drew the train with the grid. I will have to keep that in mind. Thanks!!

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  13. this looks fantastic!! my little dude would gasp in delight if he saw this...great work!

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  14. Bummer...I went to vote for you and the voting for this round must be over. I have to say that my hubby would go NUTS for this! His father used to work for the Rock Island Line in Chicago years ago. Now my hubby has quite a collection of train "things" and always looking for unique things. I've seen the pallet art, but even "I" think this one is super cool!

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  15. I love this! Tea staining is such a great way to get this look. You did an amazing job.

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  16. Yours was my favorite, congrats on making it to the next round.

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  17. Congrats on making it to the next round. This is so cool!! I love the train!

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  18. Love this! My son wants dinosaurs in his room and I've been racking my brain on how to add them with a modern vibe...this is a great idea!

    Thanks for sharing!

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  19. Wow!!!! This is amazing!!!! You are truly talented! Rani @ La Maison Jolie
    http://lamaisonjolie.blogspot.com.au/

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  20. This is awesome! I love it.
    ~Amy @ Permanent Kisses

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  21. Amazing job!

    Mrs. Delightful
    www.ourdelightfulhome.blogspot.com

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  22. You know, as I am reading and catching up on your blog I keep thinking that the thing I like most about you and your projects is how you think outside the box. You are not only a very crafty person but you are so creative. I am always amazed at the things you try and the "risks" you take with what you craft. But it always turns out amazing. I admire your confidence!

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  23. Adorable! I wish I'd seen this earlier - we're doing a train party for my son on Sunday.

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  24. I've been stalking pallet art ideas for awhile now (turns out, it's easier than actually DOING a project myself) and this is the most amazing, unique idea I've ever seen - it turned out amazing!

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  25. darling DARLING! I wish there were more train themed things out their, I really love the rustic feel! thanks for showing it off.

    Carlee
    www.ladybirdln.com

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  26. Looks so amazing! If I had a boy, I would so be borrowing this idea! Love it!

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  27. I'd love this for my son's bedroom! I'm a new follower and would love to have you stop by my new blog and follow too, if you get a minute. My first link party/give-away is running now through Saturday. I hope you can stop by and link up :)

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  28. Happy Saturday! I wanted to let you know that you've been featured today at The Gunny Sack. Stop by, check it out and grab a button!

    http://www.thegunnysack.com/2012/03/who-was-stuffed-in-gunny-sack-week-30.html

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  29. Wow! Amazing job! I am still loving the pallet art and still haven't gotten around to creating one of my own. Thanks so much for linking up to The Creative Spark. I'll be featuring this tomorrow. Enjoy your Sunday!
    Jenn :)

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  30. What an amazing job you did! My boys are so into trains they would go crazy for this! Thanks so much for sharing at Mom On Timeout!

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  31. Wow!! I don't think I would ever have the patience for this. I love the way it turned out. Thanks so much for sharing with us at Link It Up Thursday.

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  32. This is such an amazing project! I would love to feature this on Reduce, Reuse, Upcycle. Feel free to stop by and grab a featured button. Thanks!

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  33. This is gorgeous!! Great job! I didn't know you could age wood. Very cool tips!

    Lesley
    byporchlight.blogspot.com

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  34. I love! That looks amazing! I love the tip of making the 1 inch grid. I would have just looked at it and said I can't draw that and moved on. Fabulous!

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  35. Great project----loads of work, but worth it!
    ~Heidi

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  36. Also, so cute! Would be adorable as a little kiddo's head board!
    xoxo, Jordan.

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  37. Wow! Just Wow! I can not believe you painted that on their by hand... that is amazing! I really love this idea but am no where near as talented at drawing. I may have to find another way to get the image on the pallets. Great job...I am totally impressed!!

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