By General Crafts Contributor Michelle
Using pallets in crafting and home decorating is all the rage these days. Add a whimsical touch to your decor with these cute and handy pallet coasters made from popsicle sticks.
Here’s what you’ll need to get started:
- Popsicle craft sticks-each individual pallet coaster uses 16 sticks.
- Wire cutters, utility knife, craft saw, etc.-something to cut your popsicle sticks with.
- Hot glue gun
- Hot glue gun sticks
- Brown acrylic craft paint
- Paint brush
- Printed images to transfer to your coasters as decoration. (I used free French typographic images from The Graphics Fairy
- A #2 Pencil
- Ultra fine tip permanent marker
- Clear waterproof sealer spray
- Carbon transfer paper (optional)
To begin this project, you’ll need to snip the rounded ends off of your popsicle sticks. You want all of your sticks to be uniform in length, so make sure you snip off the same amount on every stick. I used a sharp pair of wire cutters to do the job, but you could use a utility knife, or even a small craft saw, if you so desire. Whatever makes a clean cut on the sticks, and you are comfortable using.
Next, using your hot glue gun, begin gluing your sticks together into a mini pallet, using the photo instructions above.
When you have finished gluing all of your pallets together, you may want to sand any rough edges left from cutting your sticks, and to even up the edges.
After you’ve glued and sanded your pallets, the next step is to paint them. I used a reddish brown acrylic craft paint, and thinned it down slightly with water to give my pallets a stained, rather than painted look. Do not thin down your paint too much and get your pallets too wet though, as popsicle sticks like to absorb water and expand, and your pallets will pop apart. (Ask me how I know!) Now it’s time to let your pallets dry thoroughly.
When your pallets are dry, it’s time to begin transferring your images onto them. You could at this point use carbon paper to transfer your images and skip the next step, or you can use my method of pencil transferring that follows. After printing the image you wish to transfer, at the correct size to fit on the front of your pallet, turn the image over. Using a standard #2 pencil, color all over backside of the image, pushing down heavily enough so you transfer a lot of pencil graphite as you rub. You want it to look black and shiny. Sharpen your pencil again, if need be, so you have a nice pointy end. Then, turn the paper back over, so the image is facing up, and line up the image so it is centered on top of the pallet. Begin tracing over the image with your pencil, pressing firmly as you do so, because we want the graphite on the back to transfer to the pallet when you are tracing.
When you have firmly traced the entire image, remove the paper, and you will have a pencil tracing of your image on the pallet to work with.
Once you have transferred all of your images to your pallets, use your ultra fine tipped Sharpie marker to trace over your pencil lines, replicating your original printed image.
The last thing you’ll want to do, after inking in all of your images, is to coat each pallet with a couple coats of a clear, waterproof sealer. Remember, popsicle sticks like to absorb water and expand, so don’t skip this step, or you risk your pallets falling apart if they get damp with a spilled drink.
Make a whole set of these cute coasters for yourself to enjoy, or as a gift for someone special.