DIY Quilt or Blanket Display Ladder

blanket ladder
I’ve been bumping into a stack of my quilts in my studio for a few months now, that is until I asked my really nice husband to make a quilt ladder (also called a blanket ladder). Quilts that are not to be used right away, or given as a gift, what to do with them? After some thinking, I decided it would do my creative soul a lot of good to be able to have them out and see them each day.
There is one smallish wall in my studio. Its behind the door, and really too small for a design wall. But perfect for a quilt ladder! Not having any real idea what I was talking about, I roughly explained to Peter what I hoped for. After that, he played with the dimensions so that it would
be wide enough to display a couple quilts across each rung of the ladder, but also utilize every bit of vertical
space it can (boo! you low ceilings).
This ladder project this started a whole chain of events that ended with my studio completely rearranged. But that’s for another post.
blanket ladder
I am SO happy with the result. (So happy, in fact, that he has built a second one, slightly narrower, for our living room.) Now I can see and enjoy my quilts as I work in the studio (which can be a very positive thing on those days I feel nothing gets done in here). I was going to paint it white, but decided it’s just right as it is.
Peter and I are by no means expert woodworkers (ha!), but I thought I would post instructions for my quilt ladder in case anyone out who’s feeling handy might be able to use. (I know that Jeni made one for her quilt market booth!) These are very rudimentary instructions, but easy to adapt to the space you have in mind.

Quilt or Blanket Ladder

General things to keep in mind:

  • Using a smooth wood like a poplar will prevent snagging.
  • We didn’t bolt this one to the wall, but I would definitely do that if it were in a high traffic area or if our kids were small.)

blanket ladder
If you make one or have questions about the instructions, please email me at

  • monica

    July 15, 2013 at 5:53 am

    it’s gorgeous!!
    I might have to show this post to my husband… subtly of course…

  • Brigit Dermott

    July 15, 2013 at 7:21 am

    How nice that your husband is crafty, too! A perfect solution to displaying your finished quilts!

  • Diane

    July 15, 2013 at 7:46 am

    Thanks so much for sharing this! Your quilts look stunning on it. I have been meaning to make something like this for sometime now. And I prefer your version mine! Time to get out the tools and get busy.

  • kat

    July 15, 2013 at 7:52 am

    We are doing the same thing in our loft to display the beautiful blankets we’ve picked up traveling. I’ll have to pin these instructions to give us another idea where to start!

  • Erin | house on hill road

    July 15, 2013 at 8:01 am

    i love it. you know i’m going to copy you, right? (rearranging my studio this week, too. can. not. wait.)

  • Molly

    July 15, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    oh yes, yes indeedy, supply bullet point #7…
    (love it, the display unit + quilts, alike.)

  • blair/wisecraft

    July 16, 2013 at 8:39 am

    Thank you Monica! It’s really a quick project, hope he makes one for you!

  • blair/wisecraft

    July 16, 2013 at 8:40 am

    Thank you Brigit! He’s only occasionally crafty, but when he it, watch out!:D

  • blair/wisecraft

    July 16, 2013 at 8:40 am

    Thank you Diane! It doesn’t take up much room, which is nice, and displays lots of quilts. I’m so happy with it!

  • blair/wisecraft

    July 16, 2013 at 8:41 am

    That sounds lovely Kat!

  • blair/wisecraft

    July 16, 2013 at 8:41 am

    Copy away! But only if you share a pic of your new studio when you’re done, ok? xo

  • blair/wisecraft

    July 16, 2013 at 8:42 am

    That step could have been #1, even the simple projects require a little profane language, right? xo

  • Nan

    July 17, 2013 at 10:26 am

    Thank you for the write up and tutorial. I have forwarded this to my husband and hopefully, I can convince to make it a weekend group project. Wish me luck.

  • kathi everett

    July 17, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    i LOVE what your husband made for you! I have too many quilts put away.

  • blair/wisecraft

    July 18, 2013 at 10:37 am

    Good luck Nan! It’s not a crazy hard project, so if your husband is at all good with a couple of power tools, you’re on your way!

  • blair/wisecraft

    July 18, 2013 at 10:38 am

    Thank you Kathi! I love having them out and visible!

  • regina

    July 18, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    Wish I had a big stack of beautiful quilts to display like this, Blair.SO Lovely!

  • Sally K

    July 20, 2013 at 7:13 am

    What an ideal display for your wonderful quilts! Thanks so much for sharing. It’s great and now I have the first step done in making one of my own.

  • Alma

    July 20, 2013 at 7:18 am

    Blair, that looks very professional, but has your personal touch added. I love it. My DH and I are going to put our heads together & build one for my quilts. Thanks for sharing your directions.

  • Suzy

    July 31, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    I love it! I’m a beginning quilter who is just getting addicted to quilting… I can imagine a big pile of quilts with nowhere to go soon enough! Do you worry about acid in the wood affecting the fabric?

  • Caz@theaccidentalquilter

    August 7, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    I have been looking for something similar, and this is perfect! Will get the hubster onto it pronto! Thanks so much for sharing XX

  • Beth

    November 5, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    Man, I am so gonna do this!!! thanx for sharing!!!!!

  • lee

    December 31, 2013 at 11:01 pm

    Ladder quilt displays are common in American Indians (Native Americans) homes. My Native American ex mother-in-law had several ladder quilt displays throughout her home made by her husband & sons.
    Thank you for bringing back this ancient art.

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