How to Make a Wall Quilt Rack

Written by amy lyn
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How to Make a Wall Quilt Rack
Quilt (Indian quilt for sale image by Tasha from

Quilts are both functional and decorative, adding a sense of warmth and welcome to any room. Some quilts are made to be snuggled under, others are just for display and some play a dual role. There are many wall quilt racks and hangers on the market. For a different approach, head out to yard sales, flea markets or even your own garage to find an old, short wooden ladder to hang sideways on your wall to display your quilts.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Short wooden ladder
  • Fine and medium-grade sandpaper
  • Clean, dry cloth
  • 2 bottles of contrasting acrylic paint
  • 1 bottle of crackle paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Deep shelf brackets
  • Measuring tape
  • Level
  • Drywall anchors
  • Screws
  • Drill
  • Screwdriver

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    Painting the Ladder

  1. 1

    Find a short wooden ladder that has four or five rungs. Sand it smooth with medium grade sandpaper, and then with fine sandpaper. Wipe off any wood dust with a dry cloth.

    How to Make a Wall Quilt Rack
    A natural wood ladder make an interesting wall quilt rack (southwest ladder ii image by Mitchell Knapton from
  2. 2

    Apply a thick base coat of your first acrylic paint colour to the ladder, and let dry.

  3. 3

    Brush on a medium, even coat of crackle paint on top of the basecoat, and allow it to air-dry until tacky. This could take anywhere from 15 to 40 minutes, depending on the temperature and humidity. Do not let the crackle paint dry completely or this technique will not work.

  4. 4

    Apply a light, even coat of the second acrylic paint colour over the entire surface. This topcoat will begin to crack within minutes in the direction of your brush strokes. When the paint is dry, brush on a coat of matt varnish.

    How to Make a Wall Quilt Rack
    Crackle paint gives the impression of an antique piece without the actual peeling paint (Barn Wood Background image by ryasick from

    Installing the shelf brackets

  1. 1

    Measure your wall from your floor up 6 feet, and make a mark where you want to hang your first bracket.

  2. 2

    Determine how far apart you need to hang the brackets to hold up the ladder evenly, and use your level to make the points evenly. You'll want the inside edge of one bracket against the outside edge of the bottom rang. Adjust your second bracket's position accordingly.

  3. 3

    Drill your drywall anchors into the positions you marked for the brackets. The packaging should indicate how many pounds each anchor can hold, so determine the weight of your ladder plus the weight of the quilt(s) before purchasing. Follow the manufacturer's instructions to drill the anchors into your wall.

  4. 4

    Position each shelf bracket over a drywall anchor. Slide a screw into the hole in the bracket and into the anchor, and use your screwdriver to secure each bracket to the wall.

  5. 5

    Hang the ladder sideways on your wall so one side is resting on the brackets and the other is hanging down. Fold your quilt to show off its decorative stitching or intricate border work, and hang it between the rungs of the ladder, or just hang one draped over the top.

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