Friday, November 4, 2011

Rustic Ladder Towel Holder

Ok, so I'm so excited to finally be posting something that I built from a plan over atThe Design Confidential. Go check her out if you haven't already. She is an amazing woman with awesome plans! anyway.....I built this ladder prop from one of her plans, found here, and I am using it as a towel rack for my master bathroom....
When Rayan built hers she used it as a rack for her craft papers and what not. Pottery barn has it featured in their catalog hanging over a table with lanterns hanging from it. I just love the endless creative possibilities this ladder prop can be used for. So I challenge you to come up with your own creative, original use for this ladder. Post a link in the comments section if you do!! Would love to see it. And now on with the build.

As always, start with a plan and some coffee

This is basically all that is needed for this project
2 2x3's cut to size, 2 1" dowels cut to size, 1" holes drilled 1/2 an inch....That's it!
Did you know that a roll of blue tape makes an awesome coffee holder?
Stained using Rustoleum oil based in KONA shade. If you haven't used Rustoleum yet, I suggest you try it. It covers so well and has a nice even finish 

Close up after stained and 2 coats of wipe-on poly. Thats one coat of stain and then hand sanded to achieve the look I wanted. I sanded a couple of spots pretty deep so it looked more worn and used. 
And that's it!!! Just use some adhesive in the holes, insert the dowels and clamp it up. The original plans used wood glue, I used construction adhesive. Its a little more firm and sets up rather quickly. But to each his own. You can use bubble gum if you want

Here's the final product. I could have made the towels look a little neater, but I didn't feel like it. Thats how it's going to look on a daily basis so why try to make it look nicer just for you.

Man I love that finish!
Thanks to Rayan for this AWESOME plan! Now go out and make your own. It cost me $11.41 and that included buying the 1" spade bit. Or you can go buy it at Pottery Barn for $399, your choice. 


  1. As a matter of fact, I DID Know that painter's tape makes a good coffee holder. I prefer a pint sized paint can, though. That's where my coffee (I totally just typed foccee - I think I may need some!) usually ends up.

  2. Thank you. I really love this thing. I want to make more, so easy to build

  3. That's awesome! A great solution for those readers who said they can't find one at a yard sale! You did a beautiful job! It's a great idea (and clean too) for a towel holder! Love it! lol at the bubble gum - I don't have big clamps so that's my DIY trick! lol! ;)

    Have a great weekend!

  4. Than you so much. I had fun building it. You are so awesome for checking out my site

  5. Great tutorial I have thought about making one many times--since everyone gets rid of their good junk BEFORE they move to Florida but decided to wait till we moved back. Great job.


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  7. Thank you so much Cheri. Such a great feeling that others enjoy my work. A huge thank you to Rayan for an awesome plan

  8. I do like an old ladder being used as a towel holder. I also saw a blog where someone had used on as a Christmas card holder. I thought that was also very beautiful.

  9. I think I've seen the same thing. Can't remember who it was though. Thanks for leaving a comment.

  10. I freaking love this! I want this in my bathroom. I didn't know you were such a carpenter... I need to start hiring you from now on, lol.

    Seriously. I'll trade you for any maps you want.

    1. Oh thanks jenna. Yeah, this is kinda how I started with the DIY thing, building with wood. I am just having a hard time transitioning it into something sellable yet. But i would be glad to make you one of these. Just contact me VIA email and we will chat about it. Thanks for the kind words again


  11. Wow!! simply awesome. I always love ideas for decoration and utility with things that come in use everyday. I am going to make this ladder towel holder from the one that I have in my garage.