Cracked, Antique Iron, Coat/Hat rack

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Project by GlennsGrandson posted 05-31-2012 03:04 AM 2963 views 6 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This idea occurred to my wife while we were browsing through an antique store and she saw a mixed bunch of old cast iron coat/hat hooks. She asked if we could make a coat rack, easy enough I said. She grabbed four mismatched hooks and so it began. It was a fun tag team project.

I used a 1×6x36” piece of red oak and put a Roman Ogee on the edges. She wanted to use a “Cracked” or worn finish on it. We applied a primer and then a dark color on the board. After it was dry we lathered that board up really good with Elmer’s school glue and mixed paint with a bit of tap water to thin it out. We quickly brushed on the paint over the still very wet/tacky glue and immediately hit it with a hair dryer. Hmm…It worked. The thicker the glue the bigger the cracks (we used A LOT of glue). Then a quick spray on clear coat after it dried.

We used some metallic bronze spray paint on the hooks, after a Rust-Oleum primer of course :)

I drilled some holes for the wall/anchor screws I got, can’t remember what they were called but they were 1/4” x 3 1/2” with a T30 head that measured 3/4” wide. So I drilled the 1/4” holes for the screws and then followed with a 3/4” spade bit to get the head below surface and make room for a “Button” to cover the screws. (Big screws for big Dakota winter coats)

When I was putting in the 7/8” wood screws to hold the hooks I decided that a regular ol’ screw driver was no fun. I didn’t want to use a drill because they were flat head screws so I didn’t want to slip off and scuff up the paint or screw. So I looked around and spotted the old Yankee screw driver that my Grandpa gave me in a box-o-stuff. It was fun to use this “older” tool for this project and was actually quite effective.

If anyone attempts this finish, please drill your holes PRIOR to the “Crackle” painting. When I used the spade bits this stuff wanted to tear off like it was one big sticker. On that note, hopefully it holds up.

Questions, comments, thoughts, ideas, constructive criticism welcome! Thanks again for looking!

-- Grant - N Dakota

10 comments so far

View Woodbridge's profile


3751 posts in 3663 days

#1 posted 05-31-2012 03:21 AM

That is a cool looking coat rack. Each of the different coat hooks are quite nice and the finish is really cool. A very creative idea that looks great.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View Ken90712's profile


18067 posts in 4434 days

#2 posted 05-31-2012 09:28 AM

Very nice looks great!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View canadianchips's profile


2632 posts in 4242 days

#3 posted 05-31-2012 01:48 PM

I’ve heard about the “white glue paint idea”, never tried it yet. I like how yours turned out.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View A Slice of Wood Workshop's profile

A Slice of Wood Workshop

1120 posts in 4418 days

#4 posted 05-31-2012 03:01 PM

very cool looking effects

-- Follow me on YouTube-

View lumberjoe's profile


2902 posts in 3493 days

#5 posted 05-31-2012 06:49 PM

This is really cool and unique


View GlennsGrandson's profile


445 posts in 3554 days

#6 posted 05-31-2012 08:34 PM

Thanks for all the comments everyone, this process is pretty simple and yields instant gratification. Don’t be afraid to try it.

Although we all love the look of the wood and the wood grain (No paint.. I know, it hurts to use paint sometimes), sometimes we have to succumb to what is “in style” or what the customer wants (in this case my better half). :D

-- Grant - N Dakota

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 4830 days

#7 posted 05-31-2012 08:54 PM

I like the cracked finish a lot. so you paint it with wood glue then apply paint then dry is that correct? otherwise what’s elmer school glue the only elmer I know is Elmer Fudd Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View GlennsGrandson's profile


445 posts in 3554 days

#8 posted 05-31-2012 10:13 PM

SCOTSMAN – Elmer’s white school glue is what I am referring too. Slather that stuff on and let set for 1-5 minutes, depending on the drying conditions and what not (we applied the thinned paint when the glue was still rather wet). Then take your aforementioned thinned paint and quickly slather that over the glue. From what I understand the less strokes the better. Let that sit for a minute or two (too quickly with the hair dryer and you’ll dry on brush strokes). Watch the magic happen. I recommend coating it with some sort of clear coat or varnish to keep it well intact (although this is my first time so what do I know?).

Hope this helps!

-- Grant - N Dakota

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 3446 days

#9 posted 05-31-2012 10:38 PM

Pretty neat what a little imagination can create. Looks nice….

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View GlennsGrandson's profile


445 posts in 3554 days

#10 posted 05-31-2012 11:49 PM

SCOTSMAN – Sorry, I reread your post. What’s Elmer’s school glue? The plain white glue you can find at any grocery store or Wal/K-Mart that most children need for elementary school.

-- Grant - N Dakota

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