DIYdiy projectsmatt pierce

diy project: sling magazine rack

by Matt

It seems I have a clutter problem. Previously it was piles of mail; this time it’s piles of magazines. Riffing on the form and function of my last post, the mail basket, I thought the same construction techniques could be used for a magazine rack. I swear to you, though, I will not use this style again next month for a laundry basket! — Matt

See the full how-to after the jump . . .


  • 5/8″ wide hardwood dowel
  • 1 x 2 hardwood board
  • leather straps
  • heavy waxed thread
  • 1.5″ x 2″ brass rectangular rings from tack/saddle supply shop



  • saw
  • drill press
  • drill
  • leather hole punch or awl
  • leather needle



1. Cut your wood pieces first. Grab the 1 x 2 and cut four 15 inch pieces. Cut two dowel pieces to 14 inches.

2. Using the drill press and a 5/8 inch Forstner bit, drill holes for the dowels. Measure the centers and 1 inch from the end of each 1 x 2 piece and drill a 5/8 inch wide hole that’s 1/2 inch deep to accept the dowel.

3. Pair up your 1 x 2 pieces and using a 1 inch screw, secure them together at 7 inches from the bottom. This will ensure that they pivot at the right place, but the brass rectangle will carry all the load. Go ahead and test-assemble everything — slide the rings into place and open the legs until they stop against the rings. Hand-tighten the dowels into place, as well.

4. Once assembled, draw a line on the feet to indicate where the legs need to be cut flush to the ground. This can be done by using a board that will rest on level ground and tracing the horizontal. Then disassemble and cut to the line using your miter saw.

5. Next, cut your leather strap pieces to 24 inch lengths. I used six pieces. On each end, punch four holes: two close to the end, and two about 2 inches in. You can wrap a piece around your dowel and judge how close you want to punch your holes. After punching holes, I ran some waxed thread though three or four times, tied it toward the back with a square knot and cut the ends.

6. After sewing up all your straps, slide them onto the dowel pieces, spacing them evenly. Lay them nice-side down so they will be seen from the outside. Reassemble everything and fill with magazines!

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