Today's project can be personalized in several ways. The first coat rack was inspired by one of my favorite childhood books called The Baby Blue Cat Who Said No, it's a perfect project for a nursery! Part two is a little more versatile. Where do you need a coat rack?
Begin by downloading the template here. We used a plastic folder which works really well because it's transparent so you can just lay the template down underneath and cut. Any thick material, like a heavy card stock, will also work. Carefully use an Exacto knife to cut out your kitten! Use the back of the folder or some scrap lumber underneath to make the cutting smoother, and ensure you're not cutting a kitten's profile into your floor.
Next, it's time to cut your wood and sand. For the first coat rack we cut the 1x6 and trim to 25" (for 4 kittens) and for the second we cut it to 31" (for 5 kittens). We used 150 grit sand paper to smooth out the cut ends.
Now measure where you'll be placing the kitten shapes. We placed ours two inches in from either end and spaced them three inches apart from each other.
The kitten shapes are just under three inches at the widest part, so the best way to space them accurately is to make all the marks in pencil first (2", 5", 8", 11", 14", 17", 20", 23", 26", 29") and then to fit the kittens in between them.
Put your kitten template in place and begin painting. We taped ours down to ensure it didn't move in the process and used the other paint cans to hold down the edges. It's a good idea to draw guidelines on the template so that all your kittens end up at the same height. We also made two templates which helped speed up the process. Cover up any exposed wood while you're spray painting (like we didn't do in these pictures) and take your time for a really clean finished product. Follow the directions on your spray paint to ensure you get the best coverage!
Now, sand the hooks so that they take the paint. Roughing the surface will ensure the paint can adhere to the hook.
Paint the hooks and the screws that will attach the hooks to the rack with the corresponding colors of each kitten!
Next, secure the moulding to the top of your rack using wood glue. Clamp in place and pre-drill for the nails using a 1/16" drill bit. We predrilled five holes and then nailed it together with a hammer.
We wanted to add some stripes and whiskers to these kittens. We used a silver acrylic paint pen we got from the craft store for whiskers and stripes for the gray cat, and we used a gold one for the yellow tabby's stripes.
Now, measure where the tails will be placed on each cat and ensure they line up! Use a pencil to mark where the screws will go, pre-drill, place your coat hooks in place, and secure with the appropriately colored screws.
Once the tails are in place, use the acrylic paint pens to match up the stripes and continue them onto the end of the tail.
(We're going to use the second edition black cat coat rack for the rest of this tutorial.)
When hanging things on your wall, it's important to know what kind of wall you have. We're going to be talking about hanging a coat rack in drywall with studs. Most houses built from 1920 on have studs in the wall, but if you're uncertain about your walls do some research or ask someone at your local Dunn Lumber.
First, it's important to find the studs in your wall. We used a stud finder, but if you don't have one and don't want to spend the money, here's a great article about finding studs using logic instead of equipment.Hint: Studs are generally placed 16" apart.
Once you've found the studs, now measure the distance between them and attach the hangers on your coat rack the same distance apart.
Position the coat rack on the wall with a level to keep it straight. Mark through the holes in the hanger. Pre drill one hole in the wall and secure the coat rack with one of the 2 1/2" screws. Level off again, before pre drilling and securing the other end of the coat rack.