How to Build an Easy $5 DIY Blanket Ladder

A DIY blanket ladder is a great blanket storage solution and is so easy to build and also cheap! You can buy the wood for about $5!  A wooden quilt ladder makes a great homemade gift too.

For more DIY storage ideas, see Storage Trunks to Make or Buy, DIY Rustic Wall Storage Bins, and our Top 5 Ways to Store Blankets.

DIY Blanket Ladder Tutorial from Remodelaholic

How to Build a $5 DIY Blanket Ladder

Get the DIY Blanket Ladder printable PDF woodworking plan here

Thanks to Amy from Hertoolbelt for these great woodworking plans! See more plans here. 

You can build this DIY blanket ladder for just $5 in materials! A wooden blanket ladder is perfect for farmhouse décor and can be used as blanket storage or for decoration, such as hanging a wreath or basket of greenery.

This wooden ladder plan uses simple cuts and pocket hole joinery to build a 5-foot blanket ladder measuring 18” W x 60” H x 2.5” D (16.5” opening)– finished dimensions can be easily adjusted.

Materials

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Dimensions

This woodworking plan details how to build a 5-foot blanket ladder. Finished dimensions: 18” W x 60” H x 2.5” D (16.5” opening)

Easy DIY Blanket Ladder Wood working plans How do I make a 6-foot blanket ladder?

To make a 6-foot blanket ladder, cut the blanket ladder sides to 6 feet (72″) or another desired length. Rung spacing can be increased to adjust, or additional rungs added. (Rung placement diagram included in the building plans.)

To make the blanket ladder narrower or wider, adjust the rungs to your desired width.

Can I make a blanket ladder with reclaimed wood?

Absolutely! A wooden blanket ladder is a great way to recycle wood from demos or other projects and save money — we made a pallet blanket ladder here for storing shoes. It cost us $0 and has lots of unique character!

Diy Blanket Ladders @Remodelaholic

Skill Level: Beginner

This wooden blanket ladder is very easy and perfect for a beginning woodworker or anyone who can make a few cuts and drill a few holes!

I attached the rungs on this blanket ladder with Kreg pocket holes/screws on the backside of each rung.  This makes it really easy to accurately place the rungs evenly spaced and creates a strong joint, so your rungs will hold your quilts and blankets with no problems.

You can alternatively screw from the side of the ladder into the rung (use 1 1/2″ or longer screws).  Another design option would be to change the 1″ x 2″ rungs for round dowels, 1″ diameter or larger.

Easy Diy Blanket Ladder, Beginner Pocket Hole Joinery, HerToolbelt For Remodelaholic

 

How to Stain a DIY Blanket Ladder

After building, remove any excess glue, apply wood filler to holes, cracks and blemishes and allow to dry.  Then sand the wood filler and blanket ladder until smooth, finishing with 120-150 grit sand paper.  Paint or stain the ladder according to your preferences and allow to dry.

Tip for staining pine

I seriously dread staining pine because it is so hard to get a nice, uniform color.  Pine is known for being blotchy and streaky.  I wanted a nice rich dark brown/red color and I was surprised and pleased with the outcome.

First I applied pre-stain conditioner to the ladder and waited about 30 minutes.  Then I applied Minwax dark walnut stain, let it sit for 5 minutes or so and wiped off the excess.  I let the walnut stain dry over night and was pretty nervous because the ladder was looking more like a zebra than a ladder 🙂

Last, I applied a nice coat of Minwax Polyshades bombay mahogany and let that fully dry.  The mahogany bombay left a nice rich color on the wood.  One perk of the Polyshades is that it contains a top coat, so no need for polyurethane later to protect the wood. DIY blanket ladder for about $5.

Other ways to stain pine without blotching

The solvents in commercially made stain contribute to blotchy stain on pine and other soft woods. So using a stain without a solvent can make the stain more uniform.

Click here to purchase the blanket ladder plans.

More easy decorative ladders to build:

Please pin this for later and also let us know how your project turned out!

And come follow along on Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube for other great projects!

Simple And Cheap DIY Blanket Ladder From Remodelaholic

Originally published 12.12.2014 // Updated 04.08.2020

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17 Comments

  1. I just made this! Thanks for the easy instructions! I’ve been wanting to do something like this for awhile, but wasn’t sure I had the skills. Apparently I do! Great first project and I can’t wait to find some more to try!! Thanks!

  2. I don’t have a Kreig jig but I do have a drill and a saw. I am going to do this with dowel rods (per your suggestion) and I can’t wait to get started! Thanks for such a great idea!!

  3. Hi I am new to all things building and I thought I would give this easy project a go. This may be a silly question, but can you please explain what the “actual” part means in the beginning:

    2 – 1″ x 3″ x 8′ board (actual 3/4″ x 2 3/8″ x 8′)
    1 – 1″ x 2″ x 8′ board (actual 3/4″ x 1 1/2″ x 8′) ?

    Also, is the cut list just the size you are supposed to trim your materials to? Thank you.

    1. It’s not a silly question, it’s a good one. In the lumber store (like Home Depot) the boards are named by the rough cut size like 1″ x 3″. However the rough cut is milled down to a standard size and sold like that (3/4″ x 2 3/8″…) So while shopping you’ll buy the 1×3, but it won’t actually be 1″x3″.

      Yes, cut the materials down to the sizes in the cut list. Happy Building.

  4. We have an antique wooden laundry basket, about 100 year’s old for our blankets, but it still looks sloppy. After I make this ladder, it will look much neater!

  5. I would think you could paint and or/distress the wood instead of all of that staining. Just a thought. I happen to have a number of distressed pieces in my home. This is on my list of things to make, just as soon as our house is done being remodeled. I want a couple. One to hold my grandfathers baby quilt, my quilt, squares made by my great grandma, quilt by my mom. And, my daughters baby quilt. To display. They are too delicate to use.

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