A Coat Tree for Under $10
A modern style wood coat tree that most anyone can build. Features varying height branches, suitable for hats, coats, and then backpacks and umbrellas.
For about the cost of lunch, you can freshen up your entryway just in time for spring. This simple coat tree is solid wood, and can be easily customized to fit different needs. Featuring nine total hooks, the hooks are smartly placed allowing each side of the coat tree to have a hat hook, coat hook, and one side has a third hook for umbrellas, dog leashes, or even reuseable shopping bags.
Don't get hung up (pun intended) on the entryway. Think damp towels, laundry drying rack or even dress up clothes, Christmas ornaments or even pretty jewelery. This coat tree can work throughout your home.
If you have a Kreg Jig and a miter saw, this project can be completed in an hour. If you have a can of spray paint, that puts your build time into the minutes. And for those of you who do not, don't despair. This project can still be made, it's just going to take more patience and probably a split board or two.
2 – 2×2 @ 8 feet long
1 – 1×1 @ 8 feet long (check the moulding aisle for trim 3/4″ x 3/4″ or rip 1x2s in half with a table saw – that’s what I did)
2 1/2″ pocket hole screws or finish nails
1 1/4″ pocket hole screws or finish nails
wood glue, 120 grit sandpaper and finishing supplies
1 – 2×2 @ 65″ (Tree Trunk)
4 – 2×2 @ 10″, ends cut at 45 degrees NOT parallel, long point to long point (Roots)
6 – 1×1 @ 4 1/2″, one end cut at 30 degrees off square (Short Limbs)
6 – 1×1 @ 6 1/2″, one end cut at 30 degrees off square (Long Limbs)
Screw the Roots to the Tree
The best way I found to attach the roots was pocket holes or a countersunk screw right through the top face of each root. Use glue and two screws. The challenge here is going to be placing the roots in the exact same location around the trunk so that your tree doesn’t wobble or lean. Check your tree for level and adjust as necessary.
Now this really is the fun part . . . if you have the right tools. I tried to do this with a countersink bit, and found myself splitting boards repeatedly. A finish nailer and lots of really strong glue would probably been better. I’m not saying you can’t, just saying that I was splitting probably every second board.
Part of the beauty and interest of this piece is the random placement of branches. Place yours where they would work for your application – if you have kids, lower hooks might work better. Build to suit your needs.
For those of you with a Kreg Jig™, I simply pretended that the end cut at a 30 degree angle was NOT cut at an angle (when clamping in your jig), and drilled a single pocket hole set on the 3/4″ setting right smack in the center of the hook as shown above. Then it was not trouble screwing the limb on.
Build your branch limbs first. In fact, I would suggest building your branches before anything else to get some practice. Then attach your branch limbs to the trunk.
And the final long limbs should get placed about halfway down the tree.
Fill pocket holes with wood filler and let dry. You will most likely need to add a second application of wood filler. Sand well, in the direction of the wood grain. Remove all sanding residue with a vacuum and a damp cloth. If you have spray on primer and paint, it will save you tons and tons of work, not to mention managing little dribbles here and there. Prime and paint as desired.