Sunday, April 2, 2017

Simple DIY Pot Hanger that folds for Easy Storage

This type of pot hanger is not particularly a new idea. Variations on this theme have been around for years. The advantage of our version is the quick way the whole pot hanger can be collapsed for easy winter storage. 

At the end of the season, simply take down the hanger and remove the plant pot. 

Next, loosen the nuts on the eye-bolts on all four corners of the wooden frame. Remove an eye-bolt from one of the four corners. Fold the frame like a fan.

Reattach the eyebolt loosely to one of the corner pieces (just so it is less likely to go missing when you store the frame).

Place the chains, the S-hooks and the folded wooden fame inside the clean, empty plant pot. Store the compact unit it away for the winter.

Here's how to make your own pot hanger:

Materials you need:

• one plastic pot–7" pot with a total 9" diameter (including the lip) 
• 1x 1.5" S-hook
• 4 x 1.25" S-hooks
• 4 x 2.5" eye bolts and nuts
• 4 x 14" lengths of chain
• 4 x .25" washers
• 4 x 9.25" pieces of  1"x 1" cedar

Tools you need:
• measuring tape
• saw
• drill
• pencil
• pliers (optional)

A few words about the Pot:

I don't recommend a terra cotta pot. It's likely to be too heavy. I recommend a plastic pot with a lip for this project. The lip sits on the cedar frame and holds the plant pot in place. 

Pots with lips are pretty common, so I don't think you should have any difficulty finding one. I found the blue plastic pot you see here at the Home Depot for under $10.

A few pointers about the Chain:

Do yourself a favour and don't try to cut the chain yourself. It is hard to do unless you have really sharp cutters! Ask the retail assistant at the hardware store to cut you four 14" lengths of half-inch sized chain.

Step 1: Cut four 9.25" lengths of cedar (1" x 1" cedar boards).

Step 2: Place one piece of cedar on top of another and square the side and end of the boards as shown. Use the top piece of cedar to mark off a square on the bottom piece. 

Repeat the process marking a square at each end of all four pieces of cedar. You will have 8 squares marked off (one at each end) when you are done.

Next we need to mark the centre of each corner square.

Step 3: Using a piece of cedar as a ruler, draw a diagonal line from one corner of the square to the other. Flip your cedar ruler and draw a second diagonal line from the opposite corner. This is what you will have when you are finished:

Repeat the process of marking diagonal lines on each corner of the four pieces of cedar.

Step 4: Drill a hole at the centre of each X. You should have 8 holes when you are finished.

Step 5: Place one piece of cedar on top of the other and line up the holes. Pass an eye-bolt down 
through the holes.

Turn the wood over and place a washer and bolt on the end of the eye-bolt. Tighten them as necessary.

Repeat the process until you have all four corners together.

Step 6: Slip one end of a S-hook into a corner eye-bolt. Connect a length of chain onto the other end of the S-hook. Repeat this step for each of the other corners. (Optional: Close the S-hook with a set of pliers.)

A finished corner

Step 7: Gather the four lengths of chain onto a large S-hook at the top of the pot hanger. (Optional:Close the S-hook with a set of pliers.)

Place the plant pot into the frame and hang your finished project. 

I left my S-hooks open and found the hanger worked well all summer. If you want to be able to remove the pot to deadhead the flowers or to water the plant however, you may find that it is better to close the S-hooks with a pair of pliers.

The hanger is great for outdoor plants, but there is no reason you shouldn't be able to use it for indoor plant as well. 

Here I used a hanger for a pot of ivy.

This project is easy-to-do with minimal carpentry skills. Not only does the pot hanger come together quickly, it looks attractive too!

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