How to Make a Blanket Ladder

September 10, 2020Allison Murray
If you've got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!

If you’ve got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!

If you've got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!

Back in 2016 I was in pretty much the same position I am in now and made a DIY Throw Ladder. In a new-ish house I’ve got my feathers in a ruffle to get my nest all comfy cozy for fall. When it starts to chill down I typically try to run the furnace as little as possible. Basically it dries out my everything and then I have at least one nosebleed every. single. day. And so I’ll only turn up the thermostat as much as necessary while wearing multiple layers. When I sit still, though, that’s when I get really chilly. And so prepping for the cooler weather that I seriously cannot wait for I purchased aset of Kantha quilts.

If you've got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!

Kantha quilts are gorgeous hand stitched quilts that are made from recycled fabrics.

What you get is a mixed bag of quilts (mine are twin size, the perfect size to cozy up with on a couch). They’re imperfect, sometimes joining together fabrics that aren’t a perfect match. And sometimes you’ll see a very obvious patch. But I honestly think that their imperfection and uniqueness make them so much fun.

Since when that chill I’m eagerly awaiting does hit, I’ll want my blankets and throws within arm’s reach, I made a DIY blanket ladder. And though it’s super easy to make, I’m so proud of it. After all, it’s the first thing I made that my dad asked me unprompted where I got it from :)

Want to see how to make a DIY blanket ladder that will impress your guests, too?

If you've got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!

Supplies Needed to Make a Blanket Ladder:

Tools:

For this ladder to stand properly we will need to ensure that both of the sides match up perfectly. The best way to do that is to use bar clamps and make our cuts for both sides at the same time. If you don’t currently own any, bar clamps are a handy tool for crafting with wood. I purchased mine from Harbor Freight when they were on sale for cheap, so keep an eye out for their sales.

Materials:

For me this project cost less than $20. If you’re willing to go through the cheaper 1″ x 3″ x 8′  pine appearance boards at the lumber yard you can purchase each for around $4. The next step up will cost you around $10 per board. I’d suggest purchasing your wood dowels at a big box hardware store. Hobby stores also carry dowel rods but they tend to run similarly in price but are a foot shorter at 36″ vs. 48″.

Cut List:

  • 1.25″ x 15.5″ Wood Dowels – qty 5

Cut your dowels into 5 total 15.5″ rungs. Sand the cut edges if necessary to smooth out.

In order to get the blanket ladder to lean on the wall you’ll need to do more than just a straight cut. Please refer to the directions below to cut your ladder sides.

How To make a Blanket Ladder

I didn’t think to take photos of some steps of this tutorial. Below you’ll see a single board being used to demonstrate how to cut your legs. This is just to help better explain what you need to do. You’ll actually have 2 boards clamped together the entire time you’re working on the ladder’s sides.

Cutting the Ladder Sides

Align 2 – 1″ x 3″ x 8′ wood boards together. Clamp together firmly. Trim both boards while clamped together to a length of 72″.

Cut one end of the board at a 10° angle. This will be the bottom of your blanket ladder. To cut the top end of the ladder first mark 2" from the front of the legs along the top of the board. From the top of the board measure and mark down at 3.25" along the back side.

Cut one end of the board at a 10° angle. This will be the bottom of your blanket ladder. To cut the top end of the ladder first mark 2″ from the front of the legs along the top of the board. From the top of the board measure and mark down at 3.25″ along the back side.

Connect the marks and cut this angle on both boards at the same time.

Connect the marks and cut this angle on both boards at the same time.

Creating the Holes for the Rungs

From the top of the ladder's sides measure down and mark in the center (1.25") of the board at the measurements 8.5", 20.5", 32.5", 44.5", and 56.6".  Using a 1.25" hole saw drill though both boards at the same time using these marks to guide the center of the drill.

From the top of the ladder’s sides measure down and mark in the center (1.25″) of the board at the measurements 8.5″, 20.5″, 32.5″, 44.5″, and 56.6″.

Using a 1.25″ hole saw drill though both boards at the same time using these marks to guide the center of the drill. Make sure you hold the drill perfectly level so that you cut straight holes down and not at an angle. Be sure to place a piece of scrap wood beneath your ladder’s legs so  you don’t damage your work surface. (In my case the living room rug because it’s freaking hot in the garage.)

Separate your 2 sides and stain both legs and your 5 ladder rungs to match.

*Note – The ends of your dowels will take on a darker color when stained. This is intentional for the design so that each rung is easily visible from on the ladder sides.

Tips for Using a Hole Saw

If you haven’t used a hole saw much it’s a good idea to practice. Using the scrap cut from the ladder’s sides, practice making a hole in the center of a board. Make sure you don’t put a lot of extra pressure on the drill as you cut down so that you don’t alter the round shape. After the hole is cut, pop in your dowel and check for the fit. The dowel should fit snugly and the dowel should be sticking out at a 90° angle. If the dowel is crooked your hole wasn’t cut straight down. Keep practicing! :)

As you cut your first hole you’ll notice that you now have a round wood plug tightly jammed into the hole saw. You can either go at that thing with a knife or screwdriver and try to pry it out or you can do something so much better, faster, and less likely to cause you to rip your hair out!

Gather 2 long screws and a drill bit that is approximately the same width as the screws. On either side of the wood plug while still inside of the hole saw, drill 2 holes.

Gather 2 long screws and a drill bit that is approximately the same width as the screws. On either side of the wood plug while still inside of the hole saw, drill 2 holes. (This step is very important. If you don’t drill the holes when you add the screws in the next step you won’t be helping to remove the plug, you’ll just be giving it more pressure to wedge it into the saw even more).

Drill your long screws into these holes a little at a time, alternating between each screw. As the screws push down on the inside of the hole saw, the plug will begin to work its way up and out.

Drill your long screws into these holes a little at a time, alternating between each screw. As the screws push down on the inside of the hole saw, the plug will begin to work its way up and out.

*Note - You'll smell burning and perhaps even see smoke as your hole saw cuts through the boards. I don't know if this could actually catch fire because it's never happened to me but it doesn't hurt to be cautious when using your hole saw.

*Note – You’ll smell burning and perhaps even see smoke as your hole saw cuts through the boards. I don’t know if this could actually catch fire because it’s never happened to me but it doesn’t hurt to be cautious when using your hole saw.

Gluing the Rungs in Place

Lay one side of the ladder on a flat work surface. Apply a thin line of glue just to the very end of one dowel.

Lay one side of the ladder on a flat work surface. Apply a thin line of glue just to the very end of one dowel.

Push the dowel into place in one of the rung holes. Lift the leg up slightly to make sure that the edge of the dowel is flush with the edge of the leg.

Push the dowel into place in one of the rung holes. Lift the leg up slightly to make sure that the edge of the dowel is flush with the edge of the leg.

Glue in all of the rungs for this side of the ladder. Clean up any stray glue and allow time, at least 45 minutes to an hour for the glue to dry.

Run a small bead of glue around inside of each of the rung holes on the other ladder side. Place it on top of the ladder making sure that the bottoms and tops are on the same ends. Pop the second leg onto the ladder, using a rubber mallet, if necessary, to connect both pieces. Allow the glue a some time to begin drying, at least 30 minutes.

Run a small bead of glue around inside of each of the rung holes on the other ladder side. Place it on top of the ladder making sure that the bottoms and tops are on the same ends. Pop the second leg onto the ladder, using a rubber mallet, if necessary, to connect both pieces.

At this point you can use a level to ensure that your ladder legs are even. If the legs are not level, tap the higher end with the mallet to push the rungs further through the holes until level. It might be necessary to sand any dowel that you do this to and re-stain the end if it noticeably sticks out more than the other rungs.

At this point you can use a level to ensure that your ladder legs are even. If the legs are not level, tap the higher end with the mallet to push the rungs further through the holes until level. It might be necessary to sand any dowel that you do this to and re-stain the end if it noticeably sticks out more than the other rungs.

Once happy with your ladder, allow the glue a some time to begin drying, at least 30 minutes.

Finishing Your Blanket Ladder

Flip your ladder over so that the back side is facing you.

Place a trim nail inside of the chuck of your drill. Use this improvised drill bit to drill through the back edge of the ladder leg and into the dowel rung.

Place a trim nail inside of the chuck of your drill. Use this improvised drill bit to drill through the back edge of the ladder leg and into the dowel rung.

Using a hammer, tap a trim nail into the hole you created. Repeat for all of the rungs on both legs of the ladder.

Using a hammer, tap a trim nail into the hole you created. Repeat for all of the rungs on both legs of the ladder.

If you've got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!

If you've got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!
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DIY Blanket Ladder

If you've got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!
Active Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr
Course: Crafts
Cuisine: Build It, Home Decor, Wood Crafts
Keyword: blanket ladder, Furniture, Organization, throw ladder
Cost: -

Materials

Instructions

  • Align 2 - 1" x 3" x 8' wood boards together. Clamp together firmly. Trim both boards while clamped together to a length of 7
    Cut one end of the board at a 10° angle. This will be the bottom of your blanket ladder. To cut the top end of the ladder first mark 2" from the front of the legs along the top of the board. From the top of the board measure and mark down at 3.25" along the back side.
    Connect the marks and cut this angle on both boards at the same time.
    Cut one end of the board at a 10° angle. This will be the bottom of your blanket ladder. To cut the top end of the ladder first mark 2" from the front of the legs along the top of the board. From the top of the board measure and mark down at 3.25" along the back side.
  • From the top of the ladder's sides measure down and mark in the center (1.25") of the board at the measurements 8.5", 20.5", 32.5", 44.5", and 56.6".
    Using a 1.25" hole saw drill though both boards at the same time using these marks to guide the center of the drill. Make sure you hold the drill perfectly level so that you cut straight holes down and not at an angle. Be sure to place a piece of scrap wood beneath your ladder's legs so  you don't damage your work surface. (In my case the living room rug because it's freaking hot in the garage.)
    Separate your 2 sides and stain both legs and your 5 ladder rungs to match.
    From the top of the ladder's sides measure down and mark in the center (1.25") of the board at the measurements 8.5", 20.5", 32.5", 44.5", and 56.6".  Using a 1.25" hole saw drill though both boards at the same time using these marks to guide the center of the drill.
  • Lay one side of the ladder on a flat work surface. Apply a thin line of glue just to the very end of one dowel.
    Push the dowel into place in one of the rung holes. Lift the leg up slightly to make sure that the edge of the dowel is flush with the edge of the leg.
    Glue in all of the rungs for this side of the ladder. Clean up any stray glue and allow time, at least 45 minutes to an hour for the glue to dry.
    Lay one side of the ladder on a flat work surface. Apply a thin line of glue just to the very end of one dowel.
  • Run a small bead of glue around inside of each of the rung holes on the other ladder side. Place it on top of the ladder making sure that the bottoms and tops are on the same ends. Pop the second leg onto the ladder, using a rubber mallet, if necessary, to connect both pieces.
    At this point you can use a level to ensure that your ladder legs are even. If the legs are not level, tap the higher end with the mallet to push the rungs further through the holes until level. It might be necessary to sand any dowel that you do this to and re-stain the end if it noticeably sticks out more than the other rungs.
    Once happy with your ladder, allow the glue a some time to begin drying, at least 30 minutes.
    At this point you can use a level to ensure that your ladder legs are even. If the legs are not level, tap the higher end with the mallet to push the rungs further through the holes until level. It might be necessary to sand any dowel that you do this to and re-stain the end if it noticeably sticks out more than the other rungs.
  • Flip your ladder over so that the back side is facing you. Tap a trim nail into the hole you created. Repeat for all of the rungs on both legs of the ladder.
    Using a hammer, tap a trim nail into the hole you created. Repeat for all of the rungs on both legs of the ladder.

Notes

If you need additional information, please visit this project's original post at: https://www.dreamalittlebigger.com/post/blanket-ladder.html

Your DIY blanket ladder is complete!

If you've got a lot of blankets this DIY blanket ladder is just what you need! With easy to follow directions, make your own gorgeous ladder!

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