Hallway hooks DIY | The Nerd Nest

We don’t have an entryway closet. We use a set of lockers to help corral coats and shoes, but bulky items like book bags end up cluttering the bench we keep next to the lockers. And now that we’re a family of five, the three lockers don’t really have enough space for all of our heavy winter coats.

No one wants a giant mess right by the front door–it’s the first thing guests will see. So we came up with a simple solution: hooks in the tiny hallway near the entryway.

Vintage school hooks | The Nerd Nest

I bought a set of vintage school hooks on eBay. The worn metal was in keeping with the style of our home and I love that the school hooks have two spots, so you can easily hang a bag and a coat on the same hook.

Jake bought a 5×10 piece of oak wood so we could mount the hooks on two wooden boards. Because my grandpa has a wood shop, buying the bigger wood and slicing it down was a more cost effective option. My grandpa ripped it into two 4 inch boards–he cut it to size for us and rounded the corners a bit to mimic the trim in our home.

Pilot Holes  | The Nerd Nest

Staining Wood  | The Nerd Nest

Screwing on Hooks  | The Nerd Nest

Family Projects  | The Nerd Nest

Even though this project was relatively simple, it took us forever to complete. The steps were all done days, sometimes weeks apart: measuring where the hooks would go and drilling pilot holes, staining and sealing the wood (using leftovers from our refinished hardwood floors project), screwing on the hooks, and mounting the wood.

Jake’s dad came over to help with the last part because we wanted them to be precise and sturdy. The heavy screws we used are in studs, but there’s a vent behind the wall, which threw the stud finder off. It’s good to have someone more experienced double check you before you commit.

Hallway hooks DIY  | The Nerd Nest

I also did another small project in preparation for the hooks–I painted the walls and trim white. Most of my house has beige walls–not by choice, but because paint is expensive and it’s hard to convince myself to spend $50 to go from beige to white, in most cases. But everything is so much brighter and cleaner looking with white. It’s literally cleaner, too, because most of the current walls are matte finish, which is a nightmare to clean with kids. Semi-gloss is much more practical. While painting a room isn’t the most exciting project, I’m hoping to motivate myself to get more done–so I’ll tick off rooms for my 52 projects over time!

Help kids organize with low hooks | The Nerd Nest

The hooks are looking great and they are really helping keep our entryway more tidy. I love that the kids can easily pick up after themselves with the low hooks, but that they high hooks keep things like our camera bag out of reach. Staggering the top and bottom hooks was also a good idea, because long coats on top don’t get in the way of the hooks on the bottom.

We have one hook leftover, so now I just need to put it on a little wood plaque for keys!

What’s your favorite way to keep organized?


This year it’s my goal to complete 52 Projects. Projects can be art, crafts, home improvement, tech, gardening, or whatever else my brain might venture into. They might be collaborative or independent. The point is to MAKE. I’m numbering in the order these projects are shared.

These are projects 28-29 of 52!

Check out the other projects: 1: Class Quilt / 2: Valentines with Eliza / 3: Crabitat / 4-7: Refinishing Our Hardwood Floors + Other Room Updates / 8: April Gardening / 9: Handprint and Footprint Butterfly Pots / 10: Ornate Frame with Clipped Photos / 11: May Gardening / 12-15: DIY Play Dough, Beach Painting, Badge Magnets, and Friendship Bracelets / 16: Fish Bowl Succulent Terrarium / 17: Summer Gardening / 18: Blackberry Trellis / 19-20: Stamped Fabric Harry Potter Pillow and Embroidered Anniversary / 21: Twin Sized Striped Blanket / 22-26: Halloween costumes–Batman, Riddler, Batgirl, Harley Quinn, and Robin / 27: Autumn Gardening /