My son, Ross, mentioned to me one day that he wished he had a place to hang his coat when he came in his front door. I’m no Fairy God Mother, but that’s a wish this Mom is capable of granting. So we went to work making him a beautiful wall-mounted coat hanger for his entry way for under $25.00.
Here’s a picture of where Ross currently hangs his coat. Unsightly. When visitors come to your door, you don’t want to greet them with an excuse-me-a-tornado-just-blew-through-my-entryway look. Organization is the key to a healthy life, and to a healthy price when the time comes to sell your house.
Here are the pieces Ross bought for around $20 from Menards for our project. (Except the black, painted piece.)
The pine 1 x 8 is the main piece of our project. All of our other pieces are built on and around it.
This piece is going to trim out the bottom of our board to add some interest. It makes our piece a bit more professional looking.
This trim will be used for the top piece as part of the plate rail, because Ross has some pictures in his entry way that he wants to display on top of the coat rack.
This trim is to place under the top piece for support.
I donated this piece of wood to our project. I stopped to pick up a treasure off the curb a couple of months ago, and found this piece in the “store” too. I liked the shape of it, and knew I’d use it for something sooner or later. It was painted black, but we’ll give it a light sand, and prime it along with the other unprimed pieces.
I also donated some hooks that I purchased at a garage sale this summer. I bought five hooks, still in their unopened packages for a grand total of $2.00. That bargain cut the cost of this project nearly in half.
I’m assuming most of you DIYers out there like to curb shop, go to estate sales, garage sales and thrift stores. If you don’t, I promise if you start, your family will never see you again. Ok, that might be a bit extreme. But you’ll quickly become addicted to the thrill of finding inexpensive (or curbside free) and unique items, and you’ll be sure to find some neat stuff to do projects like this one. Your local Habitat Restore is a great place to treasure hunt too.
I have an internal GPS that leads me to curb piles, and it nearly short-circuits if I can’t stop or at least drive by nice and slow to scope things out. I’ve also found some great stuff when I’m out walking my dog. He likes to curb shop too. Unfortunately, a curb pile to Buster is the equivalent of a fire hydrant, so I have to power-shop if you know what I mean.
For this project, we’re using both a miter box and a power miter saw. We’re using both because it’s cold in my garage, and some of the pieces are going to be more pleasant to cut with the miter box inside my warm house. But if your pieces are too tall, like the black piece I curb-lifted, they may be too tall for a miter box. I swear by my miter box. The cuts it makes are perfect with no chipping or splintering. Sometimes with a power saw, the wood on the smaller pieces of trim has a tendency to chip.
So here’s how we are going to arrange our trim pieces on the main 1 x 8 board. It’s looking pretty goofy at the moment with black, white and yellow wood all butted up next to each other like a wood rainbow. But it’s all going to come together beautifully.
The 1 x 8 needs some attention where the knots and rough areas are, so we’re spreading Durabond over them. You can use spackle or joint compound instead if that’s what you have on hand.
We sand the patches, being sure to make the edges of the patches super smooth so they blend right into the wood. If you don’t sand your patches well enough, when the paint hits them, any remaining ridges will be magnified. Then, I’m sorry to say, you’ll have a mess on your hands trying to get rid of them once they’re covered in wet paint. So sand, sand, sand those patches down.
We cut the ends of all of our trim pieces at 45 degree angles so they wrap around the sides of the 1 x 8. You gotta watch your fingers cutting those tiny end pieces! Not the best way to get a manicure.
We use small finishing nails to attach the trim, countersink the nails with a punch and spackle the holes. Since neither my son, nor myself have any talent with a hammer, we choose to pre-drill all the holes. This is especially helpful on those tiny end pieces (even if you have hammer talent), as it helps prevent them from splitting.
Here’s the primer I use to paint the entire project, even though some of the trim was pre-primed.
I apply one coat of my favorite white paint in a semi-gloss. The color is Pure White from Sherwin Williams. Next, we caulk where each piece of wood meets another piece to get rid of all the cracks. This step is really important because it makes all the pieces look like one, continuous piece of wood. Ross is a whizz with a caulk gun! (Good thing, because our next project is to caulk his shower…) After the caulk sets up, it’s time for the final finish coat of paint.
After the paint dries, we’re ready to attach our hooks. We find the center of the board so we know where to install the first hook. We cut a piece of cardboard to put between the trim and the top of the hook to use as a spacer so all the hooks will be exactly the same distance from the trim piece above them.
We find a stud in the wall, and make sure the center hook sits directly over it. We use some very long wood screws to go through the holes in the hooks, through the 1 x 8, through the drywall and then into the stud, so there’s no chance the rack will ever fall off the wall. We want at least one hook to be installed into the stud, and the middle hook is the only one that lines up properly with one.
Since the long screws that I had on hand weren’t black like the original shorter screws that came with the hooks, we used a black Sharpie to color the heads black. (The screws that came with the hooks were too short to go through our board and into the studs.) Normally, I would stick the long screws into a piece of cardboard or Styrofoam, lining them up like little soldiers, and spray-paint the heads, but again it was too cold outside to spray paint. And the Sharpie worked just fine, so why deplete the ozone, right?
Here’s where Ross’ coat used to live….
And here’s its new home! The project was under $25, but the Mother-Son experience…priceless.
This post was written by Tracy Evans who is a Certified Home Stager, Certified Redesigner and Journeyman Painter servicing the Central Illinois area. Feel free to visit her website at www.HelpAtHomeStaging.com to view her portfolio for more before and after pictures of her projects. And if you enjoy gardening, you may want to visit her gardening blog at MyUrbanGardenOasis.