Portable Untreated Pallet Wood Picnic Table & Seat Set for $2

The idea behind this project was to make a portable, elegant picnic set from pallet wood comprising two stools and a picnic table. We wanted the seats and table to match, so the design can be made from just one free untreated pallet. We chose a light coloured pine (the older seat is in a honey colour) but pallets can be found in other woods, such as oak and teak, these would both also make a great looking set. The total cost of the two seats and table was 2 Euros so around 2 Dollars or Pounds and I think you'll agree that the end result belies the price ticket!

Pallet wood furniture for and evening at the beach

Design and construction

We are frequently invited to exhibit at garden shows. Some years ago I made the first collapsible stool to make our weekends at these shows pass more comfortably. The design proved to be a success so I decided to keep to this original form and use the same principles in the construction of the picnic table viz trestle legs. 

This is an easy project and relatively speedy to construct as long as you keep in mind that stopping and checking for square at all stages of construction is key for the design to work.

DIY elegant picnic table and chairs from pallet wood - checking

The part of the pallet from which the slatted top is cut is called a stringer. Stringers are obtained from one of the most common pallets used in transporting goods, frequently referred to as a standard North American pallet aka Grocery Manufacturers' Association (GMA) pallet. The rest of the project was made both from stringers and top deckboards. These pallets are also very common in Europe. There is a link at the bottom of this article to a previous post, including a film on three ways to dismantle pallets for maximum usable carpentry wood. Also available on this blog are articles on untreated pallet identification and hints and tips on where and how to find them.

Pallet wood for making a picnic table and chairs

Pallet wood picnic table project at the beach

We tested out the optimum height for the table, the criteria we used was that it should be both at a comfortable height for eating and that it should be an easy fit into the boot of a car.  We also liked the idea that the picnic set could be stored in a beach hut and or that it would be a great addition to a tiny house.

We already knew that the seats would be comfortable as we had road tested this design for many years, sitting at exhibitions for long, long hours! We had also used the seat at home as an occasional table, when we had visitors and as a very comfortable foot stool.

DIY pallet wood picnic table project


Table working height:

Table top:
183/8"  x  29½"
465mm  x  755mm

Table  - Cut & Planed Dimensions:

1½"  x  5/16"  x  29½"
37mm  x  8mm  x 755mm

Cross pieces
15/16"  x  7/8"  x 183/8"
30mm  x  24mm  x  465mm

13/16"  x  1"  x  32½"
30mm  x   25mm  x   820mm

Cross struts
1½"  x  5/8"  x 17¾"
35mm  x  15mm  x  450mm

Stool working height:

Stool top:
17¾"  x  157/8"
450mm  x  400mm

Stool - Cut & Planed Dimensions:

1½"  x  5/16"  x 157/8"
37mm  x  8mm  x 400mm

Cross pieces
15/16"  x  7/8"  x 17¾"     
30mm  x  24mm  x  450mm

13/16"  x  1"  x   213/8"
30mm  x   25mm  x   545mm

Cross struts
1½"  x  5/8"  x 17¾"
35mm  x  15mm  x  450mm

Dowel diameter:


Watch the film, it's all in there and I included everything as it happened in the workshop, so as to give a comprehensive 'how to'.......

Pallet wood picnic table and seats project
All the best and thanks for dropping by. Please feel free to share this article, comment and/or ask for further information.

Until next time!

Cheers, Andy
© Andy Colley 2017


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