Garden Trellis from Vintage Yard Tools

Garden Trellis from Vintage Yard Tools

The vast majority of my blog posts and projects don’t have extensive stories behind them- I had an object, I had an idea, I did the project, I posted it here. That’s *normally* how things work around here and it’s not all that exciting.


Video Tutorial


Full Tutorial: Yard Tool Garden Trellis

This project, however, is truly an exception! This post contains affiliate links for your crafting convenience.

It all started out when I thrifted several old garden shovels for a Halloween project. Well, try as I might, the spooky project was a failure. I let the dust of my frustration settle before going back to the drawing board- I had the old tools after all- I just needed a new idea!

Vintage antique shovel garden tool at thrift store to be repurposed by Sadie Seasongoods /

The shovel that started it all!

Vintage antique pitchforks and rakes garden tools at thrift store to be repurposed by Sadie Seasongoods /

Another day, another thrift store…more old garden tools!

DIY Tutorial

So, I “tooled” around on Pinterest (pun TOTALLY intended) and fell in l-o-v-e with this Pin and its similar friend. Building a vintage yard tool trellis was a great idea and was right up my alley…but when I went down the Pinterest rabbit hole for each one, I couldn’t find a tutorial on either of them. Heck, I couldn’t even determine the originator of the first Pin!

But it looked so simple, right? Something I/we could definitely do. So my next stop was Habitat ReStore for some scrap/salvaged wood trim.

Scrap wood at Habitat Restore for DIY projects by Sadie Seasongoods /

Just a few pieces to choose from…

Building a Trellis

First, we determined that our trellis would go into the ground far more easily if the ends were tapered like a stake. So we used our vintage drawknife that I bought on Etsy to shave off the ends of each handle- just enough to be more stake-like (a chisel would work, too).

Using a drawknife or chisel to taper the ends of garden tool handles by Sadie Seasongoods /

There…much easier to stab into the ground…

Now, all we needed to do was attach our wood trim to the backs of our tool handles like lattice. Easy-peasy, right? So we laid out the tools and sawed the trim down to size- three pieces, progressively shorter in length.

First, we tried screws with the drill…but the drill (no matter the setting AND using pilot holes) torqued the screws in half. Those garden tool handles are dense as all get out.

Then we tried hammer and nails- which worked, but we nearly split the wood trim pieces with the force needed to get the nails into the tool handles.

Creating a DIY garden tool trellis using repurposed vintage antique yard and garden tools by Sadie Seasongoods /

Who knew it’d be this difficult?

Successful, but with a hefty side of aggravation, we hammered in three nails through the back of the top (longest) piece of wood trim. To add insurance, I wrapped jute twine around each connection/joint, as tightly as possible.

Creating a DIY garden tool trellis using repurposed vintage antique yard and garden tools by Sadie Seasongoods /

Jute twine for insurance…and aesthetics!

But we still had 6 nails to pound in! And the wood trim pieces just didn’t look like they could handle it. So, shhhh…I used wood glue for the middle and lower pieces of trim. I clamped the trim to the handles, let the glue set for 24 hours, and then I wound the twine around each connection again. Maybe the easy way out, but I’m building a trellis…not a ladder to climb on or something!

Creating a DIY garden tool trellis using repurposed vintage antique yard and garden tools by Sadie Seasongoods /

…and we have success!

And there it is- all frustrations are in our rearview mirror now, so I can enjoy that our trellis turned out beautifully! You’ll notice that unlike the inspirational Pinterest pictures, our center tool “stake” is much longer- on purpose. It will act like a tap root on a tree, and the side “stakes” will act like training wheels. I highly recommend this tip!

Creating a DIY garden tool trellis using repurposed vintage antique yard and garden tools by Sadie Seasongoods /

Our DIY garden tool trellis!

But Will It Stand?

The big test- sticking it in the ground! But ta-da, it worked like a charm (at least in our rain-drenched soil).

Creating a DIY garden tool trellis using repurposed vintage antique yard and garden tools by Sadie Seasongoods /

Works like a charm- and I LOVE how it looks!

I love the “harvest” feel it has…and it was fun to squeeze in one more outdoor project this year before winter comes charging in. And if you’re looking for other DIY Yard & Garden ideas, I hope you’ll check out my full collection here!

Craft on!


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  1. I have some garden tools that were my grandfather’s that I was considering getting rid of since I didn’t need them. I guess I will be keeping them for now. . .

  2. You are too creative. I can’t handle it! 😀

  3. That is really awesome. Wonderful and cute. Thank you for sharing.

  4. If you will use a drill and drill bit to make a pilot hole before you try to put in a screw or even a nail in hard wood you won’t have to worry about splitting the wood. Makes it much easier.

  5. Such a great trellis idea! Might make one for my garden.

  6. Your so creative! Love it! Will have to keep my eyes open for some old garden tools, I have just the place for one of these. Thanks for sharing! Pinning!

  7. Such a clever idea and what a feature for your garden! Have pinned and shared and will be having a go in making one out of some of my dad’s old garden tools 🙂

  8. Oh, I love this idea! You did such a great job and its so fun and unique.

  9. Oh my gosh what a great use of garden tools! And perfect for repurposing old ones. I think I could actually do this. Thank you so much for sharing

  10. Jann Olson says:

    Super cute Sarah! After a bit of frustration, it turned out great. I have everything to make one next Spring. Surprisingly, screws would probably go in a lot easier than nails. Thanks for sharing the how to’s with SYC.

  11. SWEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEET!! Many thanks for linking up at Vintage Charm!

  12. oh my gosh, this is so cool! Love it, but don’t love the work that seems to have to go into it.

  13. I love this! It is too cute!! I was just wondering how I am going to fix my broken down trellis that got destroyed by this crazy wind storm and weather we are having. It has about 3 years worth of a clematis on it so I think I will just tie a garden tool to it to hold it all up! I see those vintage tools all the time but pass them by, not knowing what to do with them. Now I do! Thanks for a great idea.

  14. What a fun idea and a nice way to upcycle! It looks great!

  15. Such a clever idea! I think I may do a mini version of this for a table setting. Pinning this to one of my boards.

  16. This is the cutest idea ever, and I think I may need to use this idea for my rose bush out front this spring. Love it!

    • It looks so cute, right? Someone else commented that they’re going to make miniature versions as placecard holders- now THAT might be the cutest version…just far less practical for me (since I never entertain). 🙂

  17. What a great idea for a trellis! Pinned it.

  18. This project was well worth the frustration. I love your vintage tool trellis. Thank you for sharing at Vintage Charm!

  19. Oh my gosh…this is such a cute idea! 🙂

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J. Happy Thanksgiving!

  20. So cool!!! I’ve pinned! 🙂

  21. Oh I love this. What a great creative idea! I’m glad you linked at Share a Cup.
    Today I featured Jan’s party at my blog. Come over and comment on her feature post to enter Jan in a giveaway!
    It’s nice meeting you!

  22. What a fun and unique way to use old garden/farm tools. Definitely a conversation starter.

  23. What a clever idea! I love giving new life to items that might otherwise end up in the trash.

  24. That looks really great. But, and it’s a BIG SAFETY BUT, be very carefull those tines on the hay fork don’t cause an injury to people whose face is at about the same height as the fork.
    A really nice project that should last for years, well done you.

  25. Jennifer Thompson says:

    Oh my goodness! This is so clever and creative — I love it!!!

  26. Great Idea but I would ad a 2 foot piece of Re-bar at the base (one foot connected to the handle the other foot to stick into the ground ) so the Handles just barely hit the ground since Wood Rots fast in the ground.

  27. Naomie Moore says:

    Too cool! Great idea, I have some extra tools and am going to gibe this a try. Will be great for my green beans! And will last longer too. Thanks for sharing!

  28. That is one awesome idea……..kudos! !!

  29. A crafter’s dream: Create something new from something old, inexpensive, functional, fantastic, and beautiful. You’ve hit all the marks.

    I’ve always said, “I’m not an artist”. However, I am very good at playgerism. You can bet I will be playing with this idea.

  30. Leslie George says:

    LOVE this, what a great idea 🙂 I have a thing for old pitchforks for some reason lol maybe they remind me of the horses I used to have. Thank you for sharing

  31. Hi
    this is not related to your post but can you please tell me in the second picture from the top (the picture labeled ” This is the shovel that started it all! “) , infront of the shovel , what is that metal rack with 4 small wood balls ?, I received one but i do not what it is , its looks to me like somekind of cd rack . Thank you for your help ad time

  32. Sandra Crosbie says:

    That is so clever and cool. Great idea.

  33. The very first picture made me smile. That is so cute! What a great idea. And the trellises in the stores are so cheaply made and flimsy. Your creativity is a true gift from God! Thanks for sharing!

  34. I had to laugh. In your very 1st picture, there is a cd holder. I bought exactly like that one at a yard sale and it is now a trellis for a small vine on my front porch.

  35. Love it, Love it, Love it!!! What a cute and creative way to use up those yard tools! I give you lots of credit on drilling and hammering the nails, only to find that glue was the solution! Been there, done that, so I know your frustrations! Even if I have to thrift or buy them, I will certainly be making this project! Thank you so much for such a cute and creative post!

  36. cynthia cross says:

    I made a bunch of these about 10 years ago to sell. they are not as easy as they look!!! (as is often the case, when you’re good at something you make it look easier than it is. I believe we had to make a jig to drill them. we no longer make them, but they are still cute.

  37. If you had drilled pilot holes before you put a screw in that would have worked great! I like using screws because I don’t have the strength to drive in a nail. Darling idea, keep them coming!

  38. That is adorable!! I always find broken tools and now I know what I can do with them! Pinned to try! 🙂

  39. This is so cool! You’re a smart girl.

    Happy Thoughts of Home. We appreciate you sharing your time and talent with us. 🙂

  40. This is so cool and so creative. I love anything repurposed so this really got my attention.

  41. Very clever idea and has way more character than the store bought variety! Pinned

  42. Such a cute trellis! Your thrifted tools became yard art. I really like the decorative effect of the added jute twine, too.
    Carol (“Mimi”) from Home with Mimi

  43. That is adorable! What a fun idea and great way to reuse things that can’t be used for their normal purpose any more. I love it!

  44. acraftymix says:

    I love, love, love this idea Sarah. We have tons of old rusty garden tools in the shed that would be just perfect for this.

  45. what a truly unique idea! you don’t see that everyday in blogland!

  46. Very clever, excellent repurposed trellis idea!! #MerryMonday

  47. What a fabulous repurposed trellis! Thanks for sharing @Vintage Charm!

  48. Sarah, you know that I lo-ooove this trellis. Not only does it use repurposed items, but it’s so stinkin’ cute and practical, too. That’s a win-win-win. Thanks for sharing at the This Is How We Roll Link Party.

  49. Oh you know I love this!!!!!!!!!!!!


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