Ladder Back Scarf Rack

Ladder Back Scarf Rack

While in Knoxville, Tennessee one weekend, I happened upon a thrift shop that had a pile of goodies outside their dumpster. After confirming that the pile was indeed discarded items… and that they were free!… I plucked one unsuspecting item from the pile.

Vintage ladder back chair at dumpster /


So which one did I choose?

The ladder back chair! It had a broken, semi-rotted leg that had rendered it “tossable”…for someone who clearly doesn’t upcycle. The rest of it, however, was totally usable…just not for sitting! This post contains affiliate links for your crafting convenience.

After packing it in the car for the trip home, I presented it to Mr. Power Tools (read: Jon) who promptly cut off the ladder back for my project-to-be.

Vintage ladder back chair /

The perfectly usable ladder back…

And that project-to-be? A scarf rack to hang on the back of our closet door!

I wiped it clean, and though I didn’t want to paint it, I did give it a nice buffing with some Annie Sloan wax- just to give it a little shine and smooth over its rough spots.

Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax /

Wax on, wax off, y’all.

To make it hangable, we attached some D-ring hangers to the top of the back side.

D-ring picture frame hangers /

Simple hardware…

D-ring picture frame hangers /

…and simple to attach!

I also wanted extra hooks on the front, in addition to the ladder slats. My solution? Old silverplate spoons!

Vintage silver plate spoons for repurposing into hooks /

From my stash!

I have a whole stash of vintage flatware…and while these are just too large for my cameo pendants, I was fairly certain that they’d make for perfect scarf hooks!

To make them into hooks, we first poked holes in the center of each spoon with an awl, drilled through them with a small bit, and partially bent the spoon handles.

Vintage silver plate spoons for repurposing into hooks /

Spoons for storage…

Then, we simply attached the spoons to the front of the ladder back and finished bending up the handles to make hooks!

Vintage silver plate spoons for repurposing into hooks /

Talk about coming together quickly!

The final step was to finish the hanging mechanism. I strung some heavy-gauge picture-hanging wire between the two D-ring hangers, and secured the ends by wrapping it around itself many times.

D-ring hanging mechanism for scarf rack /

Done and ready to hang!

And that’s it- super simple, and wonderfully functional- a ladder back rack!

Hanging ladder back rack for the closet door by Sadie Seasongoods /

Ladder Back Scarf Rack!

Obviously, it could be used for any number of things…neckties, belts, etc. But my vintage scarves (thanks, Kate DiNatale!) needed some storage space…and now they have it.

Hanging ladder back rack for the closet door by Sadie Seasongoods /

Look at that, perfect for vintage scarves!

As an optional, but helpful step, I added a couple of felt pads (like you use for furniture feet) on the back of the rack to keep it from banging against the door when it’s opened and closed.

Cute, right? And from a dumpster, no less.

Craft on!


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PIN ME!Hanging ladder back rack for the closet door by Sadie Seasongoods /


  1. What a great way to upcycle items, this is so creative. I want one of my own. Stopped by here from The Winthrop Chronicles Link Party! Pinning this.

  2. What a great find! I love the scarf hanger you have made with it. x

  3. Sarah, this project turned out great! Very cute and inexpensive!

  4. chris aka monkey says

    love love love this xx

  5. I did something just like that with a chair back. Now got to add knobs or something for hanging vintage beaded bags!

  6. i love this idea!!! <3
    kisses form Poland 🙂

  7. This is a creative piece! If I had the room this would be a husband “to-do” for sure. Him, not myself, because I can come up with the ideas, but can’t make them happen. Visiting from Grandma Ideas

  8. I love this really creative idea for a scarf rack! So unique! Pinned.

  9. diyadulation says

    This is a great idea! I want to make one for my towels and aprons in my kitchen!

  10. This is such a brilliant idea! I get so much inspiration from your projects; you’ve encouraged me look at things a little differently before throwing them away. Thank you for sharing at Inspire Me Wednesday. Featuring you in next week’s issue.

  11. I love this. The spoons are really brilliant as hooks. I was reading the small about section in your sidebar before I started reading the post and we just love all of the same things. LOL! I will be subscribing!

  12. What a cute idea! I really like this! Thanks for sharing at Inspiration Thursday. Have a great weekend!

  13. This is amazing and beautiful!

  14. I love the addition of he spoons!Wht a cute project!! Found you on Mama Buzz!! Hey I would love it if you stopped by my place and shared your stuff on My 2 favorite Things on Thursday – Link Party!! I would love to have you!!

  15. This is so cool and unique! I love it!!!

    Navy Wifey Peters @ The Submarine Sunday Link Party

  16. What a great idea! You are always so creative…thanks for sharing with the Thursday Blog Hop!

  17. Jann Olson says

    Really a fun idea. I love the bent spoons as the hook! thanks for sharing with SYC.

  18. Love it! Such a great upcycle and your have the most gorgeous collection of scarves!

  19. Sarah –

    What a cute idea! I always love to see what you make! They are always the most unique epicycles! Love it! Thank you for sharing at Dream. Create. Inspire. Link! I can’t wait to see what you make this week!

  20. Granma28 says

    Very cool

  21. Wow I love it!! You did such a great job 🙂

  22. What a cute idea, and a fun way to put those beautiful scarves on display!

  23. I want a ladder scarf rack! Thanks for the great tutorial!!

  24. Such a neat idea – looks fab!

  25. This looks great! I love how you used the spoons as hooks – decorative and practical.

  26. This is such a clever and beautiful idea! Thanks for linking up at The Handmade Hangout! I’ll be featuring you on my blog ( tommorrow when the new linky goes live at 6pm ET! Hope to see you there!

  27. love your chair into a scarf rack sarah! catching you!

  28. Such a cool and creative piece, Sarah! Glad you walked by that dumpster! Featuring you in this weekend’s Party Junk. 🙂

  29. Super cute & such a great idea! I’d love to have one in my kitchen for aprons & dishtowels. Visiting from Grandma Ideas!

  30. Hi Sarah! Thanks so much for joining in with “Let’s Talk Vintage” … I featured your ladderback scarf rack today! Thanks again, Jill

  31. Awesome idea! Much nicer than the scarf rack I have on my wardrobe wall. Thanks for sharing the how to

  32. You scarf rack turned out so gorgeous and I love the way you’ve upcycled totally unexpected items! Thanks for linking up with us at The Creative Circle! I featured your scarf rack this week, and I hope you’ll come and party with us again!

  33. What a fab way to repurpose an old chair! I love it!

  34. Oh my gosh…what a neat idea!

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J! Happy 2016!

  35. Helen Holley says

    What a wonderful upcycle!
    You did such a great job
    And I love it!
    Helen H

  36. How adorable. Another great recycling idea took great shape on a FREE ladder back chair back and I love those vintage scarves too. Thank you for sharing at Vintage Charm. Tweeted and pinned.

  37. Sarah, this is a cool way to repurpose a chair back!! Love those vintage scarves!! Nice save!!

  38. It is amazing with some creative imagination and your talent what a cute scarf rack you have created!!
    Thanks for sharing on Oh my Heartsie Girls WW this week, watch next week for it to be featured!!!

    Have a great week!

  39. Again, so creative! You have amazing vision. Visiting from Two Uses Tuesday party.

  40. What a great idea. I love DIY things! I’m an art instructor, so I really get into the creative part of this!

  41. Love this! Makes a great scarf rack. I’ve been holding on to a old chair to make a shelf for our bathroom makeover, now I need to find another.

  42. That’s an awful cute idea and practical, too!! Thanks for linking up with us on Throwback Thursday!


  43. Scarves are always so confusing because there’s never really a place to keep them, particularly if they’re pretty and you want to show them off! This solves that problem perfectly!


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