Claire here, and two weeks ago I asked for your opinions on which dog bed I should make for Monte. Although I was definitely drawn to the bright fun pattern of option 1, I had to remind myself that Monte is rather large and energetic, so I needed to make a bed that could stand up to his active (and often dirty) lifestyle. I’ve been itching to transform a pallet for a while now, and thought this would be the perfect time to give it a whirl. I love the final product (and I think Monte agrees), and am so pleased with how perfectly it fits into my living room. And best of all, when company comes over I can roll it out, set a large tray on top and use it for a low coffee table… easy, fun, and versatile. Want to make your own? Follow the instructions below!

  • pallet
  • fabric (I used ticking fabric similar to what pillows used to be made out of, because it is durable and I love the pattern)
  • zipper (long enough to match the width of the pallet)
  • pillow fills
  • 4 locking wheels
  • letter stencils (I used 4″ ones from Home Depot)
  • saw
  • hammer
  • sander
  • drill
  • sewing machine
  • pins
  • scissors
  • measuring tape
  • pencil
  • blue painters tape
  • acrylic paint
  • paintbrush
  1. Disassemble your pallet. I removed the slats on one side of it with a hammer and then pried the middle support board off, leaving two opposing sides still attached, creating a u-shape.
  2. Saw perpendicular to the “walls” to trim the pallet to the desired size (for Monte, I made mine 30×36″).
  3. Sand and smooth rough edges.
  4. Drill wheels into each corner.
  5. Tape letter stencils to one side of the bed to personalize. Trace the letters and hand-paint them with black acrylic paint. You can also choose to spray paint them.
  6. Measure the space your cushion will need to fit into. Set pallet aside.
  7. Cut two pieces of fabric to fit the inner measurements of your pallet.
  8. Lay the two fabric pieces with the outer sides facing each other. Pin together.
  9. Sew three of the edges together. The zipper will be sewn on the fourth (let a shorter side be the not sewn edge to avoid using an extra long zipper).
  10. With the pillow case still inside out, fold the edges of the open side down 1/4-1/2″ and pin the zipper along the fold.
  11. Sew the zipper into the opening (most zippers have instructions on how to sew into place in case my instructions aren’t clear enough!)
  12. Turn the pillow case right side out, and stuff with pillow forms (or batting if you prefer).
  13. Place in frame, and voila! You have a dog bed that is moveable and washable!

*photos by Claire Zinnecker for

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Comments (48)
  1. 1
    kelly October 4, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    Love this claire! If pets were allowed at kappa, I would definitely try to imitate this!

    • clairezinnecker October 4, 2012 at 5:48 pm

      thanks, Kelly! Miss you!

  2. 2
    Harper October 4, 2012 at 1:00 pm

    Great idea! Monte is so cute and looks great in his new bed!! 🙂

    • clairezinnecker October 4, 2012 at 5:49 pm

      Thanks!! He is very excited about it 😉

  3. 3
    Chris October 4, 2012 at 1:23 pm

    Great job, Claire! Love the industrial look and the fact that it is mobile. Monte looks very comfortable and stylish 🙂

    • clairezinnecker October 4, 2012 at 5:49 pm

      Thank you!! Yes the mobility is definitely a plus! He’s quite the model, isn’t he??

  4. 4
    Sophie October 4, 2012 at 1:43 pm

    How cute! What a great idea, my dogs would love it!

    • clairezinnecker October 4, 2012 at 5:50 pm

      Thank you!! You should make one! It was so easy and fun!

  5. 5
    Et tu, tutu? October 4, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    That’s so cute! I’m sure my dog would love one of those!


    • clairezinnecker October 4, 2012 at 5:50 pm

      Thanks, Lindsey! I was a little worried he wouldn’t love it as much as I did, but he warmed up to it very quickly.

  6. 6
    Yelle October 4, 2012 at 7:07 pm

    I love this! Genius idea, and I love utilizing it as a low coffee table too for entertaining .

    • Claire Zinnecker October 8, 2012 at 8:44 pm

      Thank you! Hopefully Monte will let me use it once in a while 😉

  7. 7
    Jessica Ellingsworth October 4, 2012 at 9:01 pm

    Looks great, Claire! Would this happen to be the same pallet your mom & I were scouting out @RSA? 🙂

    • Claire Zinnecker October 8, 2012 at 8:45 pm

      Thank you! I took this one from my dad’s warehouse, the ones you guys found are still waiting a transformation!!

  8. 8
    Pat Kelly October 4, 2012 at 9:12 pm

    Love the bed! Thanks for the directions, I’ll be doing 2 for my two loves. Phoebe a ‘pound puppy’ & Buster my beloved bulldog!!

    • Claire Zinnecker October 8, 2012 at 8:46 pm

      Oh please share once you make them! I had to make two pillows for my two dogs, but still have to make the second pallet part.

  9. 9
    Kate October 8, 2012 at 10:23 am

    Nicely done! I love the finished product.

  10. 10
    Ashley October 8, 2012 at 4:26 pm

    Love the look of this dog bed!

  11. 11
    Andrea October 8, 2012 at 11:43 pm

    Super cute! I’m going to have to make something like this for my dogs! Just curious, what breed of dog is your dog? I just recently adopted a “pound puppy” and she looks SO similar! I’ve been trying to guess what’s in her. Thanks! 🙂

    • clairezinnecker October 17, 2012 at 11:47 am

      Hello! I think Monte is a mix between a pit/lab/great dane. I will never know for sure but all his mannerisms/features seem to point to that. I call his breed a Plane 🙂

  12. 12
    Amanda October 24, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    This is so awesome, Claire! I have also been wanting to repurpose a pallet for some time now and this seems more “doable” for my skill level than some of the other projects I’ve seen/dreamed of.

    My mom bought beautiful beds for my two Labs last Christmas, but they have gotten so torn up in the 10 short months we’ve had them – I guess they just can’t handle my dogs’ nesting habits! The really durable dog beds I’ve seen just aren’t very attractive, but I’m thinking that using heavy duty fabric with this beautiful project would be a great solution!

    • Claire Zinnecker October 24, 2012 at 11:48 pm

      My dogs are the same way. Monte likes to grab his bed and use it as a toy which often ripped them. Having it on the pallet makes him less likely to play with and try to nest in it which preserves the bed. He’s pretty big and the pallet has held up well. I toss his blanket on top so he has something to nest in. Good luck!

  13. 13
    Susan October 20, 2014 at 10:20 am

    These are amazing! Great job! Just included your beds and ADORABLE pooches in a blog post! Cheers!