The Salvage Sister is making a workshop from Pallets, junk, trash & freebies!

/The Salvage Sister is making a workshop from Pallets, junk, trash & freebies!

The Salvage Sister is making a workshop from Pallets, junk, trash & freebies!

Yes, you did hear me right! This is going to be a mega project, And I am intending to use it as a workshop too, so we’re not cutting any corners!
I’m going to need my spies to keep their ears to the ground & one eye out to find all the junk I need!
The workshop will be in Brighton, BN2. I have a concrete base to build on which measures approx 5.3m x 3.3m, I want to make good use of the space, using most of the area, although much of the size & design depends upon the materials gathered.
The first thing on my list to get me started are pallets, I’d really like to find some double size ones too. These will be used for the frame & the floor. If you see any on your travels around Brighton, Hove, Portslade, Rottingdean, Peacehaven, Shoreham… lets say Brighton & the surrounding area’s… you get the idea! Lol. Then please let me know 😀

IMG_2063   IMG_2065
I’m planning on building the basic structure from fenceposts & pallets. Once that is up it will need a roof, I’m thinking a mix of corrugated roofing sheets and polycarbonate sheets which will let natural in light. Although depending on what I manage to source for free, this could change. I’ve also been offered thousands of old DVD cases for the roof by Brighton Freegle which is a cool idea & they would look great, we had a bit of a play with them, when they are linked together you can’t tell what they are, they look like shiny tiles! I need to make sure whatever I use is going to last & be fit for purpose as well as being free & environmentally friendly.
I also need to make the workshop water tight, I was thinking damp proofing with some kind of plastic sheeting, although when I was taken for a tour of Brighton’s Waste House this week by Cat Fletcher of Brighton Freegle (Thanx for the fence posts again by the way!) I was inspired by their reuse of out of date outdoor advertising banners to damp proof the walls & windows (among other things). I think this is a fabulous idea & I’m hoping they’ll have some left over when they’re finished. They also look pretty cool as wallpaper with all the bright colours & graphics.
This is my list so far, you’ll notice there are different options for everything. I think when you’re building for free you need to keep an open mind, think outside the box & try new things…

Insulation; not just your average stuff, although I want that too I’m also interested in trying bubble wrap, polystyrene, polycarbonate sheets,plastic egg boxes, spongy plastic & plastic bags, carpet & airplane insulation, wool, textiles.
Cladding for the exterior; exterior ply board, fence panels, pallet lengths, tongue & groove,
Cladding for the interior; old panels from wardrobes, solid wood wardrobe & cupboard doors, tongue & groove, interior ply, pallet lengths, planks, floor boards.
Roof; exterior ply & corrugated roofing sheets, polycarbonate sheets, DVD cases?!
flooring; Boarded out with ply board, insulated with carpet tiles then either floor boards, scaffold planks, pallet wood. (trick is to get this level!)
Wooden double doors; these may have to be made on site from free & found timber.
Windows (x2); Double glazed windows are given away all the time, this won’t be a problem.
Damp proof membrane; Plastic sheeting, reuse outdoor banners.
Getting the power on; I’m going to need a reel of electrical cable, sockets, light switches etc etc. Probably left over from building sites or returns at DIY stores.
Nuts, Bold, screws, etc Yes, I’m going to need to make sure this thing stays together! This will probably be the hardest on the list to come by & I’m presuming will be the only thing I’ll need to buy! It’s not often someone has thousands of leftover screws, nails or bolts that are the exact same size you need, but hey, I might be lucky!


The aim is to get all of these materials for free, I want to show what can be done by using unwanted materials & items destined for landfill.
We all need to start using less & reusing more. It is estimated that UK landfill space will run out in 2018, then what will do?!
And not only that, how much is being spent on all this new junk that is destined to have a short life & end up in the waste stream?
We live in a throw away culture & I aim to change that.
We are all feeling the pinch at the moment, and will be for the foreseeable future, so let’s get together as communities & help each other!
I’m planning on scouting for materials in different stages so I don’t have piles of good stuff that will be used later on rotting in the open. First stage frame, after that we need to damp proof,insulate & get the roof on, then cladding outside, followed by wire & light fitting & cladding inside. Last but not least we’ll be focusing on making it look cool! The paint job, shelving, kitting it out as a workshop. It sounds so easy when I say it like that!
Obviously one little lady is going to need some extra sets of hands for this monster job! If anyone fancies getting involved at any stage get in touch & let me know what you’re interested in. There will be lots to do & I’ve already signed up quite a few tough girlies who like getting their hands dirty! Once I have the frame materials I’ll schedule & build day. Keep checking back here regularly for updates & the scheduled build days, follow my Twitter @CharisWilliams & Instagram @CharisWilliams777 I will be documenting everything as I go along.
So where am I getting all this gear I hear you ask?! I will obviously be doing a fair bit of skip diving & looking for freebies at the road side, I will be asking local businesses if they have any unwanted items we can use & obviously keeping an eye out online, sites such as Freegle and Freecycle. I’ve downloaded an app called ‘TrashNothing’ which keeps all these sites in one place on your phone & makes them easier to manage, a must for anyone on the look out.
I want to collect the materials from within a 10 mile radius of Brighton so I’m not creating any more carbon than is unavoidable & also to save cash.
Please feel free to share this post with anyone that has leftover & unwanted materials that match my description above & happy Salvaging people!

Let me know how you get on! 😉

Charis xx

Facebook Comments
%d bloggers like this: