DIY Garment Rack

DIY Garment Rack - Noodlehead, designed by Anna Graham

Are your closets bursting full? Or maybe you’re looking for a simple and beautiful way to display your clothing or other items? Build yourself a garment rack!  I’ve used mine over the past year to corral my pattern samples. It’s been great not to have them smashed in a closet or contained in a box only to get wrinkled and misshapen.

DIY Garment Rack - Noodlehead, designed by Anna Graham

At first I searched the web quite a bit, intending to use someone else’s tutorial. I didn’t find exactly what I wanted, so I ended up building my own. I liked the idea of having a fabric shelf at the bottom, both to hold things off the floor and to keep the rack more stable. So here’s my garment rack, and guess what, it’ll probably cost you less than $20 in materials to make!

The only thing I would caution you about for this type of rack is that very heavy items will cause the middle portion to sag a bit. I made mine 39″ long, so if you’re intending to hang lots of heavy items, making it less wide which will definitely help. Feel free to experiment! You can also add hitch pin clips at the end of each dowel to hold each dowel securely in place. I haven’t needed them, but you could check it out.


Materials needed:
(4) 8ft long 1x2s (if you can find 6ft lengths, those will work too)
(3) 4ft long 3/4” wooden dowels
3/4 yard cotton canvas (42″ wide or wider)
cordless drill with 3/4” spade bit
chop saw (or have your local home improvement store cut them to length while you wait)
paint/brush or spray paint

Step 1: Cut the pieces

(4) 62″ long main legs (cut one end of each main leg at a 15-degree angle for the rack to sit level on the floor, be aware that most home improvement stores only cut at 90-degrees, if you don’t have your own saw at home to make these angled cuts it’ll still work but might be a little less sturdy/stable)
(2) 21.5″ long braces
(3) 39″ long dowels

Step 2: Drill holes for dowels

Using a cordless drill with a 3/4″ spade bit and a main leg, drill a hole 1″ from each top end and 10″ from each bottom (angle cut) end. Drill holes in end of both brace pieces, 3/4″ from each end.dowel

Step 3: Paint

Spray paint works well, too or leave as is.DIY Garment Rack - Noodlehead, designed by Anna Graham

Step 4: Dry fit

Assemble rack by passing a dowel through one end of a brace piece, about 3″ past the end of the dowel. Insert remaining brace on other end of dowel. Repeat for remaining dowel and empty brace holes. This will form a rectangular shape creating the bottom shelf frame. Place last dowel through top holes of each main leg, with two main legs per side. Pass assembled main legs through dowels of bottom shelf frame.

Step 5: Sew fabric shelf

*You might want to press and pin your fabric shelf in place before sewing to see how everything fits, make any adjustments needed.
Cut cotton canvas 35″ x 24″. Hem both short edges (these will be the sides of the fabric shelf running along the braces) by pressing one edge to the wrong side by 1/2″ and again by 1/2″. Sew hem in place. Repeat for remaining short side. Create the pockets for the dowel to slip through by pressing one 35″ edge to the wrong side by 1/2″ and again by 1 1/2″. Sew in place creating the pocket for the dowel to pass through. Hopefully that makes sense, it’s probably easier to just look at the picture!

Step 6: Assemble

Start by taking apart the rack and slip sewn shelf into place along each lower dowel. Reassemble as in Step 4 and enjoy!

DIY Garment Rack - Noodlehead, designed by Anna Graham

16 thoughts on “DIY Garment Rack

  1. bobbingirl says:

    i love it, simple but beautiful !!

  2. This is an excellent rack both in project and idea especially for the new year. I’m excited to make one or more as I have no closet in our small home, and it’s movable! Thank you for sharing.

  3. Jeni says:

    You’re just so handy! Would love to make this one day, it’s so clean and simple!

  4. Carrie says:

    You’re amazing! I want to make one, too…

  5. vanessa says:

    Love this! Looks so much better than the metal ones from Target, etc.

  6. Pre says:

    Love the shape — you can use a metal pipe, spray painted any color, to avoid a wooden dowel from bending under the weight.

  7. This is great! Such a good idea for displaying and protecting your projects.

  8. Kathleen says:

    Very nice!

  9. joza says:

    looks great I love it

  10. Connie says:

    Brilliant! Clean lines + elegantly simple like all of your patterns and ideas. Is there anything you can’t do? I like the pared-down look of your rooms. With a busy young family, how are you able to keep a minimalist no-clutter home? If you ever have time, it would be great if you could give us a few tips on achieving that look & lifestyle. I’ll bet other readers/fans would love that, too. Thank you for so many good ideas + inspiration.

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Thanks Connie! And yes, lots and lots of stuff I can’t do. 🙂 Thanks for the post suggestion, I appreciate it.

  11. Amber says:

    Such a simple design, and totally doable even for me! Am I missing something though? It says two 8ft 1x2s. But that isn’t enough for the four legs.

    Thanks for sharing! I’ll be trying this!

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Hi Amber,
      THanks for your comment. Gosh, so sorry about that, you’re right. I’ll update the post.

  12. Barbara Farmer says:

    I agree with making one using metal pipe. I have/had one purchased from a store and my husband promptly hung a bunch of his suits on wooden hangers. It didn’t last 10 minutes before coming apart and I’ve been glaring at the duct tape repair job ever since.

    Maybe I will paint this new one pink:)

  13. Leah says:

    I made this garnet rack but mine wabbles left to right. Any suggestions on how to keep it from moving? And feel more sturdy?

    1. Anna Graham says:

      Hi Leah, I inserted a couple pins at the end of each dowel which helped a lot. They kind of look like giant bobby pins, which you can take out easily if you need to disassemble the rack. Hope that helps a bit. 🙂

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