How to Make a Shoe Rack with Copper Pipe and Plywood

  • By: Monica Shulz

Don’t share the same space with cluttered footwear all over the place. There is a simpler way to keep your footwear organized and neat without denting your purse. Come along as the author of this video walks you through the simple-to-understand steps of making an inexpensive shoe rack from plywood and copper pipe.

Cut The Plywood To Size

To start you off, you are going to need a few powerful tools including a circular saw, drill, sander, and pipe cutter. Get a 19mm plywood and cut it into two equal sizes using a circular saw. The identical plywood parts should be wide enough to hold a pair of shoes and long enough to comfortably hold three shelves.

Drill the Plywood

In this stage since the copper pipe to be used measures 15mm in external diameter, similarly use a 15mm spade drill bit to drill your pipe attachment holes on the plywood. Drill three rows of evenly spaced holes, with each row having three holes.

Once complete with all the holes, use the drilled plywood as a template to mark the next one with the exact measurements and hole placement such that all the holes are perfectly aligned. In case your plywood panels experience any drilling damage, you can patch them up with wood filler before sanding the surface.

Paint the Panels

Start by applying all the plywood surfaces and edges with a coat of Danish oil. Then, proceed to apply three coats of wall paint on the patched sides of each of the panels. Once dry, apply two more coats of Danish oil on the front surfaces and edges of both plywood panels.

Prepare the Copper Pipe

As the panels dry slowly, proceed to the copper pipes and start cutting and cleaning them. Cutting different lengths of copper pipes is made easier with a handheld pipe cutter. In this case, you are going to need about 10 meters of copper pipe or more for the entire shoerack.

Each shelf will use three equal-length pieces of pipe. That said, each shelf will end up with a different length because of the varying overhangs. Measure the different desired lengths of pipe and start cutting. You can even do it comfortably seated. Witch each cut length, you can use it as a template for the next piece.

Copper can be fragile and sticky a lot. You might want to clean the cut pieces using lemon oil and a nylon scouring pad before assembling.

Start Assembling The Parts

Once the pipes are cut and clean, begin assembling everything. When setting up the shoerack, the best point to start is your shortest shelf. Assemble the shelves by sliding the pipes through the plywood holes from end to end.

You will have to trim down some of the pipes used on the sides as you wrench to create enough room for the shelf joints. For the side joints, you will need at least 16 corner connectors and two T connectors for the perfect configuration.

The shoerack you are assembling is entirely self-supporting. You won’t need any glue or fixings. Therefore, feel free to attach the end pieces however you like. If you need to take your shoerack apart after a short while, you can simply use Blu Tack to temporarily fix your connectors which holds up pretty well. When reassembling, you can use glue or something more permanent.

Copper and Plywood Shoerack End Result

There goes your innovative and space-saving shoerack looking brand new. You can use the end shelves for plants and other decorative items. You can even hang things from the pipes if you like. The touch of color inside the rack is what will blow your mind even further.


Yes, making a simple homemade shoerack is that simple. All you need is the right tools, materials, and inspiration. The author of the video has provided the inspiration. now go get the other two for a complete shoerack in the shortest time.

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Photo by Spines And Splines / CC BY 3.0