How to Make a Blanket Ladder (DIY Guide)

DIY Blanket ladder

I absolutely love the look of a blanket ladder (sometimes known as a towel ladder). Blanket ladders are super stylish and highly functional. They are just great for storing and displaying your beautiful blankets and throws in a centralized place. They also help to create the illusion of a taller ceiling in smaller spaces.

Over a year ago, I purchased my first wooden blanket ladder at Hobby Lobby. This trendy piece cost me over $60 retail, with a discount. At the time of purchase, I thought the ladder price was a steal, and I was getting a good deal. However, I didn’t know then how cheap it was to make a blanket ladder. Now I know that you can easily make your own DIY blanket ladder inexpensively. Follow along as I share a step-by-step DIY blanket ladder tutorial using basic tools and materials.

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Why a Blanket Ladder?

A blanket ladder is a super trendy statement piece that has skyrocketed in popularity over the last few years. A blanket ladder is an alternate way to display your beautiful cozy blankets, throw blankets, and quilts. It makes such an adorable and cute home decor accent piece for the family room, entryway, living room, bedroom, office, or just about any space. Blanket ladders can serve as a decorative statement piece by filling up blank spaces and walls in any area of the home.

A blanket ladder is also very versatile and can serve as a towel ladder. The towel ladder is a simple bathroom makeover idea that helps increase bathroom storage. It is also a great way to add functionality and style to your bathroom by displaying your beautiful plush bath towels and hand towels on display. You can lean it against the bathroom wall or over the toilet.

How to Make a Blanket Ladder

Step-by-Step DIY Blanket Ladder Tutorial

Materials Required:

Here are the materials and supplies you will need to build the blanket ladder:

Tools Required (Tools that you may already have in your arsenal)

Most of these materials, hand tools, and power tools can also be found at your home depot or local hardware store.

Step 1 – Determine the blanket ladder measurements.

The first step is determining and measuring the blanket ladder length you want to create. The beautiful thing about this blanket ladder is that it is customizable. Use a measuring tape and mark the measurements of the pine wood with a pencil so you know where to cut when ready.

My exact measurements for my ladder are 5 feet (60 inches) in length, 16 inches in width, and 12 inches between each rung. I cut two pieces of pine wood at 60 inches and four pieces at 16 inches. There will be a total of four vertical rungs up and down the ladder. Since this is customizable, you can make the ladder taller (with 6-foot pieces) or shorter and add or remove rungs based on your specific needs.

DIY Blanket ladder measurements

Step 2 – Make the cuts.

The next step is to cut the marked pieces of pine wood for the blanket ladder. Take the miter saw or circular saw and safely and precisely cut along the pencil lines.

DIY Blanket ladder cuts

Step 3 – Position and mark the wood pieces

Position and assemble the wooden blanket ladder pieces on a flat surface so you can see how the wooden ladder will look in when complete. Place the two 5-foot-long pieces 16 inches apart from each other. They will serve as the ladder sides holding together the rungs. I then positioned my first rung about 6 inches from the top and 12 inches apart, going down the ladder. This allowed about 18 inches from the bottom of the ladder.

Mark where the rung will intersect with the sides of the ladder. Grab your wood glue and affix a little bit of wood glue to the end of the rung to hold the ladder together. Try wiping away any excess wood glue with an old rag. Then let it dry for at least an hour. If you have a clamp available, you can use it to hold your rungs in place while it dries.

DIY Blanket ladder assembly

Step 4 – Drill the nails into the wood.

Now gather your screws and begin to drill the screws into the wood, starting with the first rung at the top. Since the wooden blanket ladder is already held together with a little wood glue, it will be easy to drill the screws into the wood. Screw two 2-inch wood screws into each side of the rung to affix the sides of your wooden blanket ladder.

Step 5 – Sand the Wooden ladder

Now it’s time to sand the wood to smooth the rough edges and prep it for staining. I used a 220-grit sanding sponge and sanded it by hand, but if you have an orbital sander available, then use that. The orbital sander will sand the wood much faster and require less elbow grease. This will remove any imperfections, create a more smooth finish and allow the stain to adhere more easily.

DIY Blanket ladder sanding wood

Step 6 – Apply stain to the ladder.

The final step is to take a damp cloth and quickly dust the ladder to remove any dust left behind from the sanding. Use a paintbrush to apply the stain to the pine wood. I chose a darker wood stain color to make it look more rustic. With the type of stain used, I only needed one coat. However, depending on the look that you are going for, additional coats of stain will result in a deeper, richer color.

DIY Blanket ladder sanding wood

Side note – An alternative way to staining this rustic blanket rack is to paint it with different colors like black or white. 

Please wait for the stain to dry before displaying your clean blankets. Drying times for stains can vary. The dry time for this particular coat of stain should take a couple hours.

*Optional Step 7 – Attach non-slip furniture pads

This is an optional step if you want to prevent the walls from scratching, as it is likely that the blanket ladder will scratch the walls. To protect the wall, use a small non slip furniture pad on the edge of the ladder that leans against the wall. This will provide a soft, protective solution to prevent the walls from scratching. It will also keep the ladder in place and stop it from moving.

Now you are ready to display your finished product – your brand new blanket ladder. This DIY blanket ladder will make a wonderful addition to your space. This decorative ladder will truly enhance your already beautiful spaces and rooms.


DIY Blanket ladder

I hope you enjoyed this simple tutorial and easy DIY project. This simple DIY blanket ladder will be great for displaying your cozy comfort pieces.

For more woodwork DIY ideas, check out How to DIY a Farmhouse Rustic Coat Rack and How to Upcycle a Vintage Suitcase into a Side Table.

Please drop a comment below to let me know what you think of this easy DIY project. Feel free also to follow me on my social media pages – Pinterest and Instagram or subscribe to my mailing list for other design inspiration, DIY projects, and home decor ideas.

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Hi! I'm Tamara White