Looking for an easy weekend woodworking project? Check out the DIY wall coat rack we recently made. The combination of light wood and matte black hooks gives the coat rack a modern look—and it’s functional!
Easy Weekend Project: DIY Wall Coat Rack
Hey all! Today I am sharing what is probably one of the easiest DIYs we’ve done lately: a wall-mounted coat rack. So, not only is it easy, it’s practical, too. I also tried to keep the tools for this one minimal so that more people can do the project.
What we had in our tiny entryway just wasn’t really working for us anymore. We had two smaller wall-mounted racks with hooks that slid back and forth. When one of the hooks broke a few weeks ago, I knew I had to get on this project. With a toddler, we now have seemingly double the STUFF in our entryway.
So I decided to make a simple popular coat rack with 7 double hooks. The double hooks would allow us to hang smaller things like hats or scarves underneath the coats. Or things we use less like umbrellas. Really can’t emphasize the value of the double hook. So here’s how I whipped this project out.
HERE’S WHAT I USED
- (1) piece of 1” x XX” x 48” poplar (actual: ¾” x XX” x 48”)
- (1) piece of ¾” x XX” x 48” poplar (actual: ¾” x XX” x 48”)
- Miter saw or have the two pieces cut at the hardware store
- Orbital sander or sandpaper to sand by hand
- Varathane Water-Based Polyurethane in Matte and small roller or brush
- Wood glue and nail gun or wood screws
- Electric drill
- Matte black hooks and coordinating screws
And here’s how I made our simple DIY wall-mounted coat rack
Step 1: Cut and sand the wood
First I cut each piece of poplar down to be exactly the same length, about 48 inches. If you don’t have a mitre saw, you can just have them do this at your local big box hardware store.
Then I thoroughly sanded each piece using my orbital sander and a 220-grit sanding disc. Then I polished the edges by hand using 220-grit sandpaper. The poplar I chose to use was already in really good shape, so I probably could have just sanded by hand. That’s why I say the orbital sander is an optional tool for this project.
Step 2: Finish the wood with urethane
I absolutely love the look of natural poplar, so I chose not to stain or paint the wood. Instead, I gave each of the pieces three coats of Varathane Water-Based Polyurethane in a Matte finish. This is one of my favorite finishes. It’s low odor with soap and water cleanup, and the finish is really durable.
It keeps the wood looking pretty matte with just a slight sheen, giving the wood a more finished look. It also helps to bring out a bit of the beautiful grayish grain in poplar since it attracts a bit more light.
Step 3: Attach the two pieces together
If you don’t want the small top shelf, you can ditch that part completely and skip this step. I wanted to add it for small items we like to keep downstairs like spare change, chapstick, Ramona’s sidewalk chalk and tiny mittens, etc. I also feel like it gives it a slightly more finished look.
To attach the small top shelf piece, I ran a line of wood glue along the top of the main piece. Then I pressed the piece down and had Mike hold it in place while I drove a few nails down through the top of the small shelf piece.
If you don’t have a nail gun, you can wait until the glue starts drying and drive a few nails down by hand. Or you can screw a few wood screws down through the top shelf piece, but be careful! This wood can split easily, so you’ll want to pre-drill holes with a drill bit to help ensure your wood won’t split.
Step 4: Screw in black hooks
After much waffling back and forth, we decided 7 hooks would be the best size for a 4-foot-long coat rack. We didn’t want them to be too close together, but we wanted to maximize the number of hooks. I used the black wood screws that came with the hooks to put one hook in the center. Then I measured and marked where the other 6 hooks would go based on that.
Step 5: Hang on the wall
We measured and marked where the studs were on the wall to avoid using drywall anchors. Then we used a drill bit to predrill three holes into the actual coat rack to correspond with the stud locations. Although I wasn’t keen on visible screws, I wanted the most secure solution possible, and we felt that this was it.
We used 3” wood screws to screw the wall-mounted coat rack directly into the studs in the wall. It’s very secure, and I’m sure I’ll get over the visible screws! Or I’ll go the Ikea route and find three small stickers in a color similar to the poplar and just cover them up that way. 🙂