How To: DIY Shutter Coat Rack

When you replace your outdoor shutters, you may be wondering what you can do with the old ones. You can throw them away, you can recycle them depending on the material they are made of, or you can repurpose them into functional interior design elements. One of the easiest projects to complete is the shutter coat rack.

What You Need

  • An Old Shutter (Wood is Easiest to Work With)
  • Dish Soap
  • Water
  • Old Towel or Rag
  • A Drill
  • Drill Bits
  • Items to Use as Hooks
  • Yardstick
  • Screws
  • White Glue
  • Painter's or Masking Tape
  • Rubber Mallet or Hammer
  • Pencil
  • Paint
  • Paint Brush
  • Sandpaper
  • Level

What You Do

1. Prepare Your Shutter

Clean your shutter well using dish soap, warm water and a towel. Let it dry. Sand loose paint and remaining debris off of the shutter. Paint your shutter in the color of your choice and let it dry. Alternatively, leave the shutter as is if you are attempting a shabby or rustic look.

2. Find Hooks

The items you use for your hooks give your shelf personality. You can purchase loose coat hooks at your home improvement store. You can also find loose coat hooks at flea markets or antique stores. Some people complete this project with the figures from the tops of old trophies. Others use cut apart pieces of old, wooden chair legs. No matter what you have decided to use, put them nearby so they are within easy reach.

3. Mark Holes

Lay your shutter on the floor or table horizontally. Use your yardstick and pencil to mark the places where you will attach your hooks. Measure 1 1/2 to 2 inches from the top (long) edge of your shutter. Measure the length of the shutter and divide that number by the number of hooks you want to use. This tells you how far in to mark the spot for your first hook. It also tells you how much space to place between hooks.

In general, the thicker the items that you will be hanging, the fewer hooks and more space in between. If you will be using your rack for purses, dog leashes and other thin objects, you can use more hooks with smaller spaces in between them.

4. Attach Hooks

If you purchase hooks from the hardware store, they will simply screw in to your shutter. Figures from tops of trophies screw in as well. If you want to use dowels, pegs or cut pieces of wooden chair legs, you will need to drill holes in the shutter. Use a bit that is the same size as the base of the objects you've chosen for hooks. Drill holes halfway through the shutter. Fill the holes with white glue and gently screw, push or pound your hooks into the holes. Wipe off excess glue with a rag. Let the hooks dry.

5. Attach Rack to Wall

Find the studs in your wall and mark them with small pieces of tape. Hold your rack against the wall and set a level on top. Attach the rack to the wall by drilling screws through the shutter and into the studs.

Making a coat rack out of an old shutter is not difficult. This fun project can be completed in a single afternoon. Follow the instructions and you have a unique and functional item for any room in your home. If you don't have or aren't ready to replace your shutters but still want to do this project, you can visit a company like The Blind and Drapery Corner.