We started with ten free pallets. My husband took them apart, and I put them in 4 different piles. Size/shape at this point didn't matter. I was looking at color and texture. In my head, I labelled the piles as:
- pretty plain,
- already painted,
- stain with vinegar/steel wool,
- and stain with apple cider vinegar/steel wool.
Since I had never tried the staining, my first goal was to ensure I had equal size piles to draw from. They weren't exact, but it was pretty close. Three days prior, I prepared my stain by putting steel wool in a mason jar and filling with white vinegar and in a separate jar made steel wool with apple cider vinegar. I made four jars of each kind of stain because I wasn't sure if I'd use it all. I did, so I was glad I had it. After the steel wool had sat in their vinegar bath for three days, I mixed each jar with a wooden paint stick and then my two stains were ready to use. I stained my two piles that I had previously sorted and let them dry overnight.
The next morning we started building the wall from the bottom up. My job was to lay out the pieces and figure out what would fit. We didn't want to spend money on particle board or the like to make a wall in our barn for these to attach to. So I had to make sure we could nail the ends into the studs in our barn. Pallet pieces are different thickness, so this took a long time, and I wouldn't give in to cutting to make it fit. In the end, I probably should have spent a fewer hours worrying that I wouldn't have enough boards to finish because I probably have at least 1 1/2 pallet pieces left over. But this was our first big project, so 8 hours to build from start to finish I don't think is too bad. This was a surprise for our son's birthday because he loves playing darts and never had a dart board at home.