This one is for all the renters out there, I feel you! It’s hard to find ways to make your lifestyle work in a place you can’t change to suit your needs. This is especially true when it comes to storage. A lot of rentals don’t even have built-in wardrobes. If they do, they tend to be laughably tiny. You have to get creative to find solutions that provide extra storage without taking up precious space and/or being an eyesore. Enter: the foldable DIY clothes rack!
This clothing rack fits in the corner and makes use of what is usually an empty, purposeless space in your room. Open it up to hang your clothes – fold it and put it away when you don’t need it!!
I love the minimalist aesthetic and rounded corners. Scroll down to learn how to build this DIY clothes rack 😃 All you need is some thin lumber board and a couple of brass hinges!
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- Wood lumber board 4.5 x 2.5 x 500cm (1.7 x 1″, get at least 5.5 yards)
- 4 cm (1.5″) brass hinges
- Pocket hole jig
- Flathead screws
- Wood glue
- Wood filler past
Step 1: Cut the wood
To start, cut the lumber boards into the following pieces. You’re cutting into boards that are 4.5cm (1.7″) wide and 2.5cm (1″) thick so I’m only providing the length needed below since the width and the thickness don’t change. If you don’t own a saw, you could ask a friend to help you out (it’s a very quick job!) or get the wood cut for you at the hardware store. Mark out the letters onto the pieces to help you remember, we’ll sand the pieces down later so the pen/ pencil mark will disappear!
- A: (2 pieces) 141cm / 55.5″
- B: (1 piece) 32cm / 12.6″
- C: (6 pieces) 9cm / 3.5″
- D: (1 piece) 41cm / 16.1″
- E: (1 piece) 91cm / 35.8″
- F: (2 pieces) 41cm / 16.1″
- G: (1 piece) 95.5cm / 37.6″
For the C pieces, the idea is to get wide wooden squares using the same lumber boards you’re using for all the other pieces so you don’t have to buy a different width of lumber.
Cut 6 lengths of wood 9cm (3.5″) long. Take 2 pieces and apply wood glue to the edges. Press the pieces together with clamps to obtain a square of wood. Repeat with the other 4 pieces to get 2 other squares. To make the rounded corners, use a compass to draw the curve, like in the picture above. Cut out the 3 curved shapes with a jigsaw.
Step 2: Drill pocket holes
Now that you have all your pieces ready, use a pocket drill kit to make pocket holes in all the places indicated in the plan above.
I’m using a very cheap pocket hole jig (get it here), simple but does the job! If it’s your first time drilling pocket holes, don’t worry it’s very easy. Practice on a few pieces of scrap wood before you work on the pieces you cut for the DIY clothes rack.
Place the pocket hole jig on top of the wood piece over the area where you need pocket holes. Make sure the jig entry holes are facing away from the end of the lumber board, like in the picture above. Clamp the jig to the wood and insert the drill bit into the entry holes. Drill in one smooth movement and repeat for the other hole. Here’s a video showing you how to use a pocket hole jig in more detail!
Step 3: Assemble the wooden frame
Once all your pocket holes have been drilled, you can assemble the wooden frames like in the woodworking plan I provided above. For the F pieces, which are the supporting boards at the bottom of the frames, their placement is subjective. I put mine 35cm (14″) away from the feet but you can place them slightly lower or higher to suit your taste!
Apply some wood glue to the ends where the joint meet.
Press the boards together with a clamp and insert screws into the pocket holes. It’s OK if there is a small gap at the joint between some pieces. Use some wood filler paste to close the gaps.
Leave your 2 wooden frames until both the wood glue and the wood filler are dry.
Step 4: Paint the clothes rack
Now that your frames have dried, sand them down. You want to achieve smooth and rounded edges. Make sure you sand away all the letter marks you made on the wood. The wood filler around the joint should also be sanded until it’s almost invisible.
I painted the frames white except the lower supporting posts (the F pieces) to show the natural wood grain. Before you start painting the frames, place some masking tape on the supporting posts to protect them when you paint the rest of the frame. Rub the masking tape to make sure it adheres to the wood properly and to prevent the paint from bleeding underneath the tape.
Place protection, like a big piece of cardboard or tarp, on the floor or table and lay down your frames. Apply the first coat of paint and let it dry well before you apply the second. If needed, you can sand the frames lightly in between coats to achieve the smoothest finish.
Step 5: Attach the hinges
When your painted frames are dry, place them on top of each other with the “good” side facing in (that’s the side without the pocket holes). Make sure they are exactly on top of each other, check the position of the feet and sides for alignment. Screw in the two hinges with the brass screws they came with when you bought them.
And voila! Your DIY Clothes Rack is done, place it upright and open it up to start hanging your clothes. In my home, it lives in our second bedroom and we’re wondering how we ever lived without it! What do you think of placing in the entrance? That would especially useful for renters who can’t drill into the wall to put up coat hooks.