before & after: stella’s jewelry rack + sara’s spool holder

What I love about older homes and apartments is that you never know what historical curiosities you may uncover hiding inside. Our 1920’s duplex apartment has some provided some fascinating (a small telephone nook in the wall) and disgusting (a rat in the stove) findings over the past few years. Apart from evicting the rat, I haven’t done much with the things that I’ve uncovered in our apartment, which is why I bow to Stella and her quick thinking on this salvaged wood jewelry rack. While rummaging in her closet, she pulled out a shelf to discover that it was made from these old stair steps– can we please take a second to think about how awesome this staircase must have been, with each floor’s number hand painted on the front of the step? Anyway, Stella wasted no time giving these boards a third purpose in life. She added small hooks that match the wood’s antique feel and mounted the boards together to create a gorgeously rustic storage piece for her accessories. The result is equal parts efficient and beautiful, and I want one. Excuse me whilst I scour the back of my closet in the hope that similar treasures await me there. Great job, Stella! – Kate

Occasionally, a before and after with a tutorial on how to recreate the project will serendipitously land in our laps. I’m happy to report this is our second one today! If you happen to find similar materials or have some on hand, you can follow Sara’s process to make your own wooden spool holder. I frequently see decorative wood scraps lying around salvage yards and thrift shops, although to be fair I must divulge that I make the rounds at these shops weekly–it’s my one compulsive behavior, I swear. If you can find several different shapes, then snatch them up! I see a beautiful row of spool holders on the wall of a craft room, studio– they would even make great decor on a living room or hallway wall. This method certainly puts my tangled mass of thread in a gallon sized zip-lock bag to shame. You can click here to see how Sara completed the project on her site, The Spotted Fox. Great idea, Sara! – Kate

  1. Kifus says:

    Love the rustic look of the jewelry rack!

  2. sara s. says:

    wow, that jewelry rack is fantastic!!! i love the juxtaposition of the raw, unfinished rack with the cute necklaces and pins. super cool!

  3. Sharon says:

    love that jewelry rack!

  4. Dawn says:

    What a clever idea! Love the wooden spool holder!

  5. Charlotte says:

    Love it! Where can i get some hooks like that or cool hooks in general? I’d like to make a jewlery hanger with a picture frame.

  6. Chartlotte, I used old locker hooks {spray painted black} that I picked up at my local home recycling center.

  7. kristine says:

    What lovely ideas, thanks for the inspiration!

  8. g! says:

    So glad you posted this one! I’ve have a couple bags full of driftwood I collected off the beach this summer in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. I had intended on making some of the pieces into jewelry holders/racks, but… got a little lazy with my idea :) I have this one really amazing piece of weathered plywood with some stripe stains from where pieces of metal had sat and rusted- can’t wait to do this now! I’m thinking it will be my Friday night project !

  9. kelly says:

    Ooh, both gorgeous ideas for things that always end up in messy piles around my place. Love these!

  10. Sarah says:

    LOVE the jewelry rack Stella! Also the jewelry on it! Where did you find the piece second from the right??

  11. Esther says:

    This is way cool!! Both ideas starting with the jewelry rack with the old fish hooks and the wooden spool hanger, I like the color of paint used. Great ideas, gets you to looking at wood with a totally different outlook.


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