Thinking about building your own DIY clothes drying rack? Check out this super easy DIY project where I built a custom drying rack with plywood!

In my house, everything goes in the dryer except my more delicate items. Most of the DIY racks I’ve seen, tilt out from the wall. However, that wasn’t going to work in my space because I have a door that would always be colliding with it.

So I designed this rack with independent rods that swing back and forth. This way, if a door does knock it, it will just swing out of the way and no damage done.  I am very happy with the results! It was a very simple and cheap DIY project that adds a lot of function to my laundry room.

1) I used 1/2″ plywood to cut a back and four trim pieces. 

IMG_9758 copy2) Before painting, I set the trim pieces in place and made a mark with a pencil, to just outline where I didn’t have to paint. 

Note:  You don’t have to do this, I did because I know glue sticks better to unpainted surfaces. 

IMG_97593) With those drying, I grabbed the scrap piece of paino hinge left over from building my fold down workbench, then used a Sharpie to lay out where I needed to cut. These are roughly 1 3/4″ long but I used the barrel pieces as my guide on where to make my cuts. I wanted three barrels (the rounded parts of the hinge) to each piece I was cutting. I used a handsaw to make these cuts. 

IMG_9760IMG_9761 4) I went ahead and made a second hole on one side of the hinge so I could attach it more securely. I first used a center punch to mark my location then a drill bit that was the same size as the existing holes. 

IMG_97635) then I quickly gave them a coat of paint using spray paint that sticks to metal.

6) while those dried, I glued on my trim pieces then also put in a few brad nails.

IMG_9764IMG_9765IMG_97667) To make arms, I bought some 1/2″ dowel rod and cut four pieces at 16 3/4″ then gave them a few coats of paint.

IMG_97708) Once they were dry, I stuck them in my vise and drilled a small pilot hole. 

Tip: I wrapped a shop towel around the rod before clamping down so I wouldn’t mar the paint.

IMG_9772 9) Then I attached the hinge. Make sure the painted face of the hinge is down.

IMG_9773 10) Then I took them over to the body and first drilled pilot holes then screwed in the screws.

11) Next I cut some tiny little rectangles and nailed them to the frame of the body. This gives the rods a support block so they don’t droop. 

Note: Using hot glue to attach these blocks would probably be easier, since they are so small. I just didn’t think about it at the time. 

IMG_977412) To add the knobs, I flipped the rack over and came up 2″ from the bottom then drew a straight line. I made marks on that line at 3″, 10″, and 17″ then drilled a hole using a bit the same size as the screws that came with my knobs. Once the screws were in, I flipped the rack back over and twisted on the knobs.

13) Last thing was the install it. I have solid core doors so I as able to take a few screws and attach it directly to the door. If you have hallow core doors, then using a picture frame holder in the back would would great as well. 

IMG_9776Now I’m not going to show the delicates that I actually built this rack for, but I hung a dress and a shirt so that you can get the idea. ; ) 


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