5 Things To Do with Ladders
Is your ladder hiding out in the closet? Then it’s time to haul it out and make good use of it-as a piece of furniture, a planter, or even to serve a family meal.
Stepladders are handy to have in the house for little chores. Use it to hang kitchen and bathroom mats on after washing.
Make Display Shelving
Convert a short wooden stepladder to shelving for displaying plants and collectibles. It’s as easy as one, two, three:
1. Remove the metal spreader that holds the front and rear legs of the ladder together. Then position the ladder’s rear legs upright against the wall and attach two 1″x2″ cleats to fix the distance between the front and rear legs. Position the cleats so that the tops are level with the top of a rung.
2. Each shelf will be supported in the front by an existing rung. To support the back of each shelf, attach a cleat between the rear legs, positioning it at the same level as the rung.
3. Cut plywood or boards to fit as shelves and screw them to the rungs and cleats. Now screw the centermost rear cleat to the wall and you’re done.
Construct an Indoor Trellis
Give your vines and trailing plants something to climb on. Using wall anchors, attach vinyl-covered hooks to your wall and hang an attractive straight ladder (or a segment of one) from the hooks, positioning the ladder’s legs on the floor a couple of inches from the wall. It’s easy to train potted plants to grow up and around this rustic support. It looks nice on a porch too.
Display Your Quilts
Don’t let your fancy stitching languish in the closet! For that homespun feel, a ladder is a great way to display quilts, lacework, crochet work and throws. To prevent rough surfaces from damaging delicate fabrics, smooth wooden ladder rungs with sandpaper or metal rungs with steel wool if necessary.
Plop It and Plant It
When a ladder is truly on its last legs, it can still be of service lying down. On the ground, a straight ladder or the front part of a stepladder makes a shallow planter with ready-made sections that look sweet filled with annuals, herbs or salad greens. After a couple of years of contact with soil, a wooden ladder will decompose, so don’t expect to use it again.
Make a Temporary Table
The big family picnic is a summertime staple, but where to put all the food? You can cook up a makeshift table in no time by placing a straight ladder across two sawhorses. Top it with plywood and cover it with a tablecloth. The ladder will provide strength to support your buffet, as well as any guests who might lean on it.
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