Repurpose Towel Rods for Cheap, Beautiful Storage
Whether you pick them up while shopping at Ikea or head to Home Depot so you can shop for potting soil at the same time, towel rods have tremendous potential when it comes to home decorating and organization. Here are just a few of the ways you can put them to use. (See also: Savings in Every Room)
DIY Pot Racks
If making your own pot rack feels overwhelming, don’t despair — towel rods can come to your rescue. Just be sure to choose something that doesn’t scream “BATHROOM” and attaches to either the ceiling or the wall easily; some sort of rustic metal or sleek brushed steel should do the trick. Next, you simply attach to the ceiling in a convenient location along a stud. If you prefer, you can also attach several of them in a vertical column on a wall near your stove. Either way, the next step is to hang your pots and pans off the rods using "S" hooks.
Create Counter Space
This basically works the same way the pot racks work, although you’ll be using them for things like hanging baskets full of gadgets, coffee mugs, etc. It’s one of my favorite decorating strategies for small spaces. You attach a towel rod to the wall above your counter but under the top set of cupboards. Again, make sure you are screwing the attachment plates into wall studs. (You can do this with an inexpensive stud finder from the hardware store.)
Basic Towel Warmer
If you want to create your own spa bathroom on the cheap and don’t want to dish out for an actual towel warmer, try placing a couple of towel rods above one another on the wall over your floor register. The heat will rise and warm the towels, which is a nice treat in the winter. If you happen to have a wood furnace, it’s especially cozy.
Modern Magazine Rack
Want major magazine storage you won’t have to dust or move out of the way in order to vacuum? Use the same configuration I suggested above and place several on a wall one above the other, leaving enough space for the magazines to hang over each rod. Basically, you’re going for a cleaner, more modern version of the old-fashioned library magazine racks. If you go for the thinner, metal rods you can purchase at Ikea and place them on a wall painted in a bold color, you’ll have a dramatic and graphic piece of wall art that costs you nothing extra. The design will change each month you get new magazines as well, which is extra cool. Think tan, wine red, or sage green walls paired with sleek black rods for a powerful loft-style decorating statement.
Sleek Supply Storage
Secure a decorative towel bar over your desk and hang small rustic pails with "S" hooks along the length. You can even use old-fashioned canning jars with the metal handles if you want; that would look great with a desk made from a weathered farm table. Then, store your pens, highlighters, and other office supplies in the pails or jars. It’s a fun look and keeps your desk available for actual work.
Clearly, towel rods can be used for far more than their name suggests. A little out of the box thinking and a trip to your local hardware store can have you saving big on the home front. There are many other supplies available at your hardware store that can also be used for decorating; one of my favorites is industrial shelving.
What unexpected uses have you found for towel rods? Let us know in comments!