diy pipe clothing rack

Slowly but surely, our little studio is becoming a warm and cozy showroom space — most recently with the addition of a new clothes rack to display several of our vintage pieces. Before this, many of our clothes for sale had been stored in my own closet so I can’t tell you how ecstatic I am to get them out! My hope is to grow our little collection (and I’m already on it because I just picked up a few b e a u t i f u l dresses on our last shopping trip) now that we have the proper space to store everything. And this DIY project displays our clothes so gorgeously that my motivation to add to it is much stronger. I just love the industrial elements of the clothing rack against the delicate row of vintage clothes.

I can’t take credit for the design, and I’m sure many of you have seen this example or several others floating around the internet already. But I did want to share the process with you all because while building this piece, we realized several pieces of the process were missing from the original post that we referenced. However the photos were super helpful for many of the steps, so I do suggest taking a look there before beginning. And besides that, Ryan shares some really beautiful photos of his finished piece that were absolutely an inspiration here.

What you’ll need:

  • (1) 3′ black steel pipe
  • (2) 18″ black steel pipe
  • (2) 4′ black steel pipe
  • (8) 3″ black steel pipe
  • (10) T fittings
  • (10) close nipples
  • (4) floor flange pieces
  • (2) 90 degree elbow fittings
  • (2) 45 degree elbow fittings
  • (2) plugs
  • (1) union
  • (2) 1″x8″ pieces of wood, plus scrap to join
  • hammer and nails
  • jigsaw
  • pipe wrench
  • stain (optional)


Begin from the top and work your way down. This is important to keep your frame sturdy and to allow the union piece to work correctly. Start with your 3′ pipe and screw on your 90 degree elbow fittings on either end, finishing with your pipe wrench to get a tight fit and to ensure the open end is facing downward properly. From each 90 degree elbow, screw in one close nipple and then a T fitting. The T fitting should end up facing away from the frame to start attaching your front and back hooks. Into each T fitting side, screw in another close nipple, then a 45 degree elbow and a plug to finish. Now working downward, screw in your 4′ pipe into the bottoms of each T fitting.

Add another T fitting to the bottom of each 4′ pipe, using your wrench to be sure the T faces inward. From each side of the T fitting, screw in your 18″ pipes. Now use your union to join each 18″ pipe and create a finished rectangle frame. From the bottom of your T fittings now, screw in another close nipple to each side. Now screw on another T fitting, using the center opening facing upward (referencing this photo helps) first. From each side of the T fitting, screw in your 3″ pipe — two on each side. Add another T fitting to the ends of each 3″ pipe. All four should be screwed on from the center opening, with each end parallel to the frame 4′ pipes. Into the tops of the T fittings, screw in four more 3″ pipes. These will be your base for your wood shelf. Into the bottoms of the T fittings, screw in four more close nipples and then each of your four floor flange pieces to act as feet to your clothing rack. Now your pipe frame should be complete.

For your wood shelf, lay your two pieces of 1″x8″ wood down next to each other. Use a scrap piece of wood or two to nail down width-wise to join your base together. Now lay your piece centered at the base of your clothes rack and measure how far in, on each side, the 4′ pipe comes in on the wood. Mark that same distance at the center of each end of the wood. Depending on the width of your pipe (we used 1/2″ pipe all throughout), you’ll want to cut out at least that width or more. We decided to go for an inch, and measured 1/2″ out on either side of the center “seam.” Then, using a jigsaw saw out a U shape, or even easier, a petal shape that meets at the initial center mark on each side of your planks. If staining your wood, sand everything down and stain your wood following the directions on your stain of choice. Once dry, fit your shelf onto the pipes by sliding it into the indents you have sawed out.

We can’t wait to get this space looking even more like a shop, and think this clothing rack really helped us on our way!


15 thoughts on “diy pipe clothing rack

  1. Gah thank you ! I have this cheap Ikea clothes rack that drives me crazy with all it’s wobbles. XD This is looks as though it would be a lot sturdier, and I could totally make it (with my boyfriends help, he’s more experienced with the jigsaw). =D

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