Hey Guys it’s me again! Ready for another tutorial? If you peruse Pinterest you’ve likely seen lots of fun ways to upcycle old wagons. I’ve seen multiple variations of repurposed tables and shelves and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on one! I wanted to have a display shelf for all of the little car treasures Mr. A has. It took me a while to find the perfect wagon. Not because there was a shortage of vintage wagons around, but because I am a frugal gal. I’d keep my eye out for one searching the local classifieds and thrift stores, but I finally decided upon this beauty at a local vintage market. The price was right and I couldn’t pass it up.
This was a super easy project! The first step is taking the wagon apart. I just used my ol’ trusty screwdriver and off came the wheels and handle. Not much to it. Then I gave it a good wash down! I just used a wet rag and it cleaned up nicely. It was pretty dirty but I LOVED all of the rusty patina hiding under the dirt! This adds character and history to the piece.
Next I measured the inside width of the wagon to determine how long to cut my shelf. My wagon wasn’t the most symmetrical, it had been around the block a few times and was bowed in a bit. So I would suggest you measure for each shelf because mine were definitely different measurements. I used some old pallet wood I had lying around which was FREE! Gotta love that price! And the wood even happened to be the exact depth of the wagon so that was perfect, saved a few cuts.
Then I fit the shelf inside the wagon to see if I needed to make any adjustments. I wanted the shelves to be snug so I did have to use a hammer to get it in there all the way flush to the wagon.
Once the wood was in place, I used a dry erase marker to mark where the shelf would be. (It wiped right off with my finger when I was finished using it as a guide.)
Then we turned the wagon on its side and uses the shelf piece as a straight edge. We lined it up with the mark on the front of the wagon and marked 2 dots where we would then drill the pilot holes for the screws.
I also marked the side of the wagon with the dry erase marker so I knew where I would drill each pilot hole. I held the wagon between my legs to keep it steady and drilled all of the pilot holes.
Since pallet wood is often pretty rough, I did sand the edges a bit. Then they were ready to be installed.
Here’s a little tip for ya. If you don’t take out any nails that are sticking out of the wood, they’ll eat up your sand paper. The easiest way to remove nails from pallet wood it to put a screwdriver on the nail and hit it with a hammer. It usually knocks it right out. Sometimes you’ll get a stubborn nail that’s a little harder to remove. You can also take a saw to the nail to trim it down to be flush with the wood. Maybe it’s the vibration when using this method, but it usually makes the nail fall right out.
Almost finished! I placed the shelves back into the wagon and screwed them into place so they are nice and sturdy. Since I had predrilled pilot holes the screws went right into the wood without any problem. The one thing you’ll want to be careful of though is to make sure you hold your drill directly above the hole so you are screwing straight down into the wood. If you’re drilling at even a slight angle your screw may pop through the wood either on top of below the shelf. Just take your time and hold it straight over the hole and you’ll be more likely to avoid having the screw pop through the wood where you don’t want it.
Time to hang this cute DIY wagon shelf. To stay true to the easiness of this project we simply decided where we wanted the wagon to be positioned on the wall and secured it to the wall with a drywall screw, utilizing the holes that were already in the wagon where I had unscrewed and taken the wheels off. Easy Peasy!
Now the fun part…add all of the fun trinkets and treasures to decorate it up and you’re finished! I enjoy this part so much. See this cute tiny oil can? This was my Grandpa’s. We found in his workspace after his passing and I was able to give this little guy a new home. I love bringing sentimental pieces into my décor especially when I get to tell my kids stories about the particular item or their family members they came from.
So, with about 30 minutes of your time you can turn an old rusty wagon into a darling display shelf! If you have found this tutorial inspiring please SHARE AND PIN IT!
And as always here at Sunny Side Design we hope to . . .
BRING YOUR HOME TO THE SUNNY SIDE OF THE STREET.