Here’s how to turn an old door into an attractive and very useful hall tree. This is a terrific storage solution for coats, boots, hats and more in the entryway or mudroom. It’s made from an old panel door with door and cabinet hardware as hooks.
It’s a fun and totally doable DIY project. Just follow our step-by-step tutorial.
How to Make a Hall Tree from an Old Door
Materials for DIY Door Entryway Tree
- Liberty Hardware Vintage Style Cocoa Bronze Decorative Faux Door Knob with Backplate
- Liberty Hardware Mandara Cocoa Bronze Cabinet Knob
- Salvaged Panel Door
- Behr Calligraphy Satin Enamel Paint
- 2 in. Brad Nails
- 1½ in. Brad Nails
- 1 in. x 6 in. x 8 ft. Common Board
- 27 in. Country French Ash Table Leg
- Wood Glue
- 1½ in. Plain Hanger Bolts
- Phillips head screwdriver
- 3/32 in. Drill Bit
- Medium Angled Paint Brush
- 18 GA Cordless Brad Nail Gun
Before You Begin
We recommend an extra set of hands to help with assembly. Due to the nature of the 90-degree angles, it is safer to have two people building the final piece when using the brad nail gun.
Step 1: Prep the Pieces
We recommend prepping the door first, before building the base unit. Using a sanding block or a sanding sponge, lightly sand over the surface of the door to rough it up and allow the paint to adhere. You can also sand the corners of your pre-cut boards to smooth them out by brushing the sanding block against them.
To help with the building of the DIY Hall Tree, we’ve included the below photo for reference.
Step 2: Mark Table Top Placement
To build the base of the hall tree you will be using a 1 x 12 in. common board and two table legs.
For our project, we had our common board cut at the The Home Depot to the size of our salvaged door. The length of the door was exactly 2 ft. wide resulting in two cuts to the 12 in. board to create a top and bottom piece.
We started by marking the placement of our table top.
Lay the front edge of your freshly cut top piece (1 in. x 12 in. x 2 ft.) on its back and place table legs perpendicular at the front of the board.
Using a pen or pencil, mark the desired placement of the table legs. We recommend placing them on the front two corners of the top board.
Step 3: Wood Glue Table Top
Apply a thin beading of wood glue along the top square surface of your table leg. This will ensure a tighter seam when attaching the two together.
Step 4: Attach Table Top
Lay the front edge of the top board on the floor, and hold the table leg securely at a 90-degree angle. Working on a flat surface and the marking your table leg placement will help to create a level table unit. Using your nail gun and 2 in. brad nails, secure the two together by nailing the top board and the table leg together.
Repeat for the other side of the top board.
Step 5: Glue the Feet
Keep top board with attached legs lying flat against ground to continue working with the 90-degree angle needed for the bottom board. Apply a thin beading of wood glue along the bottom foot of the table leg.
Step 6: Nail the Baseboard
Using your nail gun and 2 in. brad sails, affix the bottom of your table legs to the bottom board (2nd piece of 1 in. x 8 in. x 2 ft. common board).
Step 7: Attach the Base Unit
Now that the entire base unit is built, you can attach it to the door. Lay the door on its side and place the base unit on its side, with the base board of the door and the bottom board of the unit close aligned.
Apply a thin beading of wood glue along the interior side of the base unit’s bottom board. Press the bottom board of the unit against the base of the door. This part can be a little tricky, but it is important to align the bottom board with the base of the door as it would be if standing upright.
Use your brad nail gun and 1½ in. brad nails to attach the bottom board of the unit to the bottom of the door.
We recommend starting on one side and moving towards the other to create a tight seam between the door and the base unit.
Flip the door and base unit upright and repeat the process above for the top board. Apply a thin beading of wood glue along the interior side of back of top board and press against the door. Using the brad nail gun and 1½ in. brad nails, attach the second seam of the base unit to the door.
Tip: Aligning the nail gun to nail through the boards into the door can be a difficult thing to do measuring by sight. If you miss the board when nailing through the back side of the door, you can always use cutting pliers to snip off the edge of the brad nails.
Step 8: Add the Shelf
We decided to first attach the corbels and then attach the shelf to the door.
Flip the entire unit (door and base) on its side for easier assembly.
Apply a thin beading of wood glue along the interior side and the top edge of the corbel; lay it flat against the door for the backboard. Be sure to line up the top edge of the corbel and the top edge of the door to create a flat surface for the top shelf to rest.
Using your brad nail gun and 1½ in. brad nails, attach the back of the corbel to the door using the same instructions listed above when attaching the base unit.
Once the corbels are secured, follow the same process for adding the top shelf. Be sure to line up the back edge of the door and the side edges of the corbels for a level and even seam.
Step 9: Caulk Gaps (Optional)
Once you have completed attaching the top shelf, flip the entire unit on its back. Depending upon how old the salvaged door is, the top shelf may not be adhered and may have some spacing gaps, as ours did. You can add a small amount of caulk to fill in the seams if you desire.
Step 10: Paint
Now that you have finished building the hallway tree, it’s time to paint!
We knew we wanted a moody blue shade for our final piece, so we chose Behr’s Calligraphy for its traditional colonial blue look.
Step 11: Add Hooks
Since our hall tree is made from an old door, we used door knobs for the hooks.
We recommend marking the placement of your hooks and knobs before installation. (Keep in mind what type of items you plan on hanging from them! You wouldn’t want the bottom of your jacket resting halfway across the table top.)
Mark the general placement of the top of the hook and the hole in which the screw will secure the hook to the door.
Using an 8/32 in.drill bit, pre-drill the holes into the door for your hanger bolt to be installed.
Using the provided hanger bolt hardware included in the hook, start by screwing the flat threaded side into the back of the door knob handle. Place the back plate in the pre-marked area. Screw the pointy side of the hanger bolt into the door through the hole in the back plate by turning the knob clockwise. You will feel the secure mount of the hook when the knob and the back plate are flush against the door and properly aligned.
Step 12: Add Knobs
For additional hanging capabilities, we decided to add coordinating cabinet knobs to the side of our door tree. You can add these knobs, or more hooks in your own desired placement areas depending upon how you want to use them. You can easily swap hooks for knobs in any area you would like by following the instructions above.
The hardware won’t come with hanger bolts, but you can purchase hanger bolts for the thickness of your door. We chose to install our knobs with 1½ in. hanger bolts, since we were installing on the sides of the door.
Step 12: Style and Enjoy Your Hall Tree!
What makes this DIY door hall tree so great is its versatility. Whether you are looking for more organization of children’s school bags, or just looking for a place to hang your hats and coats in style, this project can do it all!