Monday, May 9, 2016

Pallet American Flag

Who knew pallets could be such a trend. But, it's true! They are pretty great. I mean, FREE wood to make FREE decor, furniture, & more. 

But hey, I'm not here to spell out the obvious. I'm here to show you how I made my Pallet American Flag. So, without further ado, a tutorial with picture captions!

I made two Pallet American Flags. The first one was a large one, the size of an actual pallet, which went to my mom (shown below). The second one was smaller (shown above) using 1 pallet & a couple left over pieces, which went to James' mom.

My mom's large pallet flag.
First, I started with a pallet. My wood pieces were spaced out, like a regular pallet usually is. I took a saw and went in between the wood pieces, sawing the nails in half. Watch this YouTube video on how to do that (he makes it look a lot easier than what it was like for me!) :

In order to make a large, pallet-sized flag, I had to use 2 pallets to get enough wood slats. Then, I just used a nail/staple gun to attach them to a pallet frame. This way, the slats aren't spaced out, and are snug together.
Finished pallet, un-decorated. This was my mom's pallet.
Then, I measured the pallet from top to bottom, & divided that number by 13, as there are 13 stripes in an American Flag. I taped off the area's that I want "white." Keep in mind, this was my first ever pallet flag, so it wasn't perfect. The top & bottom stripes should be red. With tape, I marked where I wanted my blue section to be. I laid an old t-shirt on the stripes part so I didn't get after-spray on the rest. I used Krylon CoverMaxx Brilliant Blue spray paint, which was on clearance at my Wal-Mart. I did 2 coats of the blue.
I let the blue dry, put a t-shirt over it, & painted the red stripes. I used Krylon Cover Maxx , and I think it was the Cherry Red. This was also on clearance for $3.00 a can. I did 2 coats of the red.
A day later, I began working on the stars. Now, don't be like me & just think all the stars go in a line & you'll magically end up with 50. Hence, the 2 bottom stars. Whoops. I actually printed out a line of stars off Word Documents, cut them out, & used the stencil to spray paint with Krylon CoverMaxx Bright White.I would recommend buying paint pens & just drawing the stars on, like I did with James' mom's pallet. See below.
I highly recommend drawing the stars on with a paint pen. I found mine in the craft section at Wal-Mart.
Once the tape is removed, it looks like this. I need to fill in that line in between the blue & the top stripes. 

I put tape over the white parts, and two t-shirts on the sides to prevent over-spray. I even put a thick shop towel at the bottom to protect that area from over-spray, too.

And ta-da! That's my mom's pallet...
And James' mom's pallet. I actually painted the white stripes white on hers, to cover up some bleed from the red. I just used white paint from the craft section at Wal-Mart. They are 50 cents a bottle. I nailed the boards of my mom's to the actual pallet frame but with James' mom's pallet, I just used two boards that were vertically long enough to lay the height of all the boards. (I'll get a picture of that!)
After both pallets were dry, I used a paint roller to coat the entire pallet with this Clear Semi-Gloss Protection. James had some in his garage. Source

In the end, my mom's pallet was the first one I made, and James' mom's was the second. I feel I knew more going into James' mom's, hence, drawing on the stars, rather than using a stencil & spray painting them. James' mom's turned out more crisp. Also, I pre-planned where all 50 stars would go. I used a picture of an actual American flag to start with, getting 6 stars across the top & bottom, and 5 stars on the sides. I just put small white dots to mark where the other 28 stars would go. I liked how random it looked in the end. 

Questions? Comment below! I'd love to help you out with any tips I can provide. In the meantime, good luck on making your Pallet American Flag! I'll be making one for myself soon, so stay tuned. 

Warm Wishes,

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