Introduction: 21 Uses for a Wire Coat Hanger

Picture of 21 Uses for a Wire Coat Hanger

Wire coat hangers are cheap and easy to find. Sure they work well for hanging your dry cleaning but that's just the beginning. Here are 21 ways to upcycle the humble wire hanger.


Step 1: Razor Organizer

Picture of Razor Organizer

This keeps your new disposable razors lined up in an organized row. Cut a section of wire and bend it over a socket. Tie a lark’s foot with a rubber band at the curved end. Load the razors and secure them with the rubber band.

Step 2: Belt Keeper

Picture of Belt Keeper

Keep the loose end of your belt from dangling. Form a piece of wire into a rectangle. Make it so that there is a little friction when the top belt is threaded through. Paint it your favorite color to match.

Step 3: Adjustable Guy Line

Picture of Adjustable Guy Line

This set up was used in the old days to adjust the tension on ropes anchoring tents. A figure 8 is made by shaping the loops with a pair of pliers over the shaft of a screw driver. The ring is made using the same method. Once on the cord you crimp the ring tight with pliers. 

Step 4: Plate Display

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Form a piece of wire as shown to prop up a plate. You’ll have to play with the angles for your specific plate.

Step 5: Key Ring

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Make a custom key ring with a socket bit. Choose your size socket and wrap the wire around as shown. The wire tends to spring back with larger loops so you may end up using a smaller socket to get the right size.

Step 6: Drain Cleaner

Picture of Drain Cleaner

This is for all you intsructees with long hair clogging your drains. Form a hook. Unscrew / unhook the drain plug. Fish out the hair.

Step 7: Calendar Hanger

Picture of Calendar Hanger

We like to hang a calendar at our house but we don’t like seeing it all the time. The problem with hanging it a cabinet is that the main panel of the cabinet door is too thin to screw into.

Place two small screws on the styles of the door. Next, thread cord through the spiral of the calendar. Form small hooks and lark’s foot them to the cord. Finally, hang them on the hooks.

Step 8: Card Display

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Place two magnets on your fridge. Take a section of wire and make the ends as fancy as you want; spirals, circles, stars, mud flap girl, and so on. Place the wire against the magnets. Hang your card. 

Step 9: Chip Clip

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You can make an over sized paper clip using a socket bit and pliers. It works great for holding your favorite snack bag closed. 

Step 10: Large Sewing Needle

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Hammer the end of a section of wire. Drill a hole in it. File the other end to a point.

Step 11: Lock Out Key

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It seems that when you get locked out of a house hold door you spend more time finding a small enough screw driver. This key can be placed above the door, on the ledge of the door jam, keeping it handy.

Form a handle at one end. Hammer the other end flat and file it to a flat head.

Step 12: Safety Pin / Wrench Organizer

Picture of Safety Pin / Wrench Organizer

Make a large safety pin with a section of wire. I use it for a wrench organizer.

Step 13: Fix a Draw String

Picture of Fix a Draw String

Cut the top portion of the hanger off as shown.
Straiten out the wire and form it into a circle.
Make a small loop at one end of the wire.
Crimp the draw string inside the small loop.
Feed it through the opening of your bag / pajama pants / hoodie.
When the crimped loop emerges from the other end, release the sting.
Pull out the wire.

Step 14: Bubble Blower

Picture of Bubble Blower

Shape the hanger into a circle. Bend the hook closed for a handle. Place masking tape on the handle end, as shown, to better complete the circle.

Step 15: Mirror Hanger

Picture of Mirror Hanger

These simple clips make it easy to hang large mirrors. Bend a section of hanger into a "U" Shape.  Bend the lower part 90 degrees. Tap the newly formed hanger into the wall and hang your mirror.

Step 16: Knotless Gear Tie

Picture of Knotless Gear Tie

This wire fish makes a quick and easy way to lash extra gear to your pack. You can see a full demo in step 4 here.

Start by taking a coat hanger and cutting out the long bottom section. Bend it about 1/3rd of the way down over a the shaft of a screwdriver. Bend the longer end at 90 degrees. With the short end against the shaft, wrap the long end around both. See the pictures. Cut it to length so that 5 coils are left. File any sharp edges.

It must be bent in two areas for it to work. The first is where the coil was cut. Use pliers to reduce the diameter of the last coil. This helps hold the paracord in place and prevents the wire end from catching onto your gear when your pulling the tie tight.

The other important bend is at the head of the fish. The upper most coil must be bent toward the top. This gives the back of the head a hook shape for the paracord to tie around. See the pictures.

The tail is bent to complete the fish look. It also gives another place to tie off.

Step 17: Rope Making Jig.

Picture of Rope Making Jig.

Rope making has been around for a very long time. While there are more complicated ways to go about it, this set up is one of the simpler ways. All you really need is a few coat hangers and a couple scraps of wood. Check out the full instructable here. 

The twine I’m using measures about 1/8”. Six lines of it made a 3/8” rope. Twelve lines made a 1/2” rope.

Step 18: Make a Locket

Picture of Make a Locket

A coat hanger makes it possible to create this hand made locket. After rolling a circle it's used to form the picture frame for the locket halves. See Step #4 in the link below.

Step 19: Skeleton Key

Picture of Skeleton Key

Yes, you can even use a hanger for some cool projects. This one was made by soldering several pieces together. Of course you have to remove the protective coating first.

Step 20: Make a Crystal Ring

Picture of Make a Crystal Ring

This is a fun project to make for little hands. It's created by hammering a section of hanger flat. With a little soldering and some polish you get this ring. Check out the full tutorial in the link below. Make sure to coat the inside of the ring with nail polish before wearing it.

Step 21: Make a Pendant

Picture of Make a Pendant

A coat hanger will help you form out the shape of a pendant. All you need to do is make the shape you want, tape it to a thin sheet of metal and hammer it on both sides. The links show how I used this method to make a rocket and heart.


electrohelp made it! (author)2016-03-24

What's behind drywall or above ceiling plaster PROBE for DIY renovators.

For details:


Thx for that. I used this one all the time in Windsor, Ontario when working in finished homes

adam.verner.790 (author)2016-04-10

Your forgot the one from American horror stroy
nice post btw

NancyB42 (author)2016-03-18

My Dad would have loved this Instructable. It's a family saying that Dad could fix anything with a wire hanger, a pair of pliers and a roll of black electrical tape. And he could! Some of his fixes are still intact and working. (He passed away 14 years ago.)

jenirugs (author)NancyB422016-03-28

Oh, Nancy, reminds me of my Dad, who passed 10 years ago, who my Mom always said he only used tape and staples to fix everything.

nuffnuffnuffing (author)2016-02-24

You can buy all of these for under $1.50

taur561 (author)2016-02-14

Try using them to make candle holders . We have power failures fairly frequently and they make great candle holders as you can hook them to walls , door frames etc without worrying that they will be knocked over and set the place on fire . Slip a round piece of tin foil to catch the wax . The wire is also used here to make the frame for beaded animals , wire cars , bicycles etc . I use them for making pegboard hooks to hang up small items , making bird feeders , tying up creepers or tree sapling supports , wire plant hanging baskets , etc . Dozens of uses for old wire hangers if you put your mind to it .

RustyL (author)taur5612016-02-22

I'd like to see your candle holders and how you make your peg board hooks. Please make an instructable!

Cat00x (author)taur5612016-02-16

It would be great if you could post pictures for the candle holders, and others. Or make an instructable on it! thanks.

RustyL (author)2016-02-22

You are very talented. This is a great instructable. I know I can use some of these.

PilarF (author)2016-02-20

Impressive ideas!

TmurphyJ (author)2016-02-18

These are great tips. We used something similar to Step 12 to hang squirrels/rabbits from our belts when hunting.

SusanH75 (author)2016-02-17

Oh, Man. You Rock. Every one of these ideas are original and very cool! Come up with some more. Can't wait:)

steven.parker.357 (author)2016-02-16

I might be missing something simple here, but how do you operate the razor blade holder? Seems like just a fancy way of making them stay upright if you have to maneuver the rubber band to get a new blade.

mae.moore.718 (author)2016-02-16

I also use it to unstop an overflowing commode. Just take the wire hanger loose and juggle it up and down in the commode.

fusion (author)2016-02-16

That safety pin wrench organizer is almost exactly the same way you make a click gun. Just extend the needle part and grind it to make a blade

hammer9876 (author)2016-02-15

Don't forget marshmallow toasters - once the plastic has burned off.

Jack Rodgers (author)2016-02-15

Don't forget TV antennas, quite popular in the decades before cable.

And, opening automobile car doors after you lock the key inside. Before smooth door buttons, you could hook the button with a little bend.

Straighten the hanger and use it to jab your little siblings...

BrendanE1 (author)2016-02-15

#22 welding filler rod .... My boss never bought brazing rod he would use coat hangers from the Cintas truck that dropped off his overalls. he laughed as he said he never ran out cuz they showed up every week

BKnite (author)2016-02-15

This reminded me that with a hook like for the drain cleaner, it can also be used to clean out a clogged vacuum hose.

actimm (author)2016-02-15

I was actually kind of surprised to NOT see that it also makes a fairly good oxy/acetylene welding rod. I've used coat hangars for welding rod for years and it is almost as good as the expensive stuff.

Lee Wilkerson (author)2016-02-15

Dude, you rock! Thank you very much for posting this extremely creative collection. I have been frustrated for the past 25 years by a belt which only needed the clip you designed. (Hand-palm to the forehead). I already had created a bathroom door unlocker from a CH.

When I worked in aviation electronics, I needed an extremely long probe to probe the contacts in the back end of radio gear sleeves, so I made this from a coat hanger and a couple of pieces of heat-shrink tubing:

abaneyone (author)2016-02-15

These are great ideas. The sky really is the limit to imagination, creativity, usefulness and application with wire coal hangers :D

TRIPPER22 (author)2016-02-15

Please respect the space: Post only once.........

tedknowlegy (author)2016-02-15

I've made numerous mounting brackets for components with wire hangers. I've also made shelf hanging brackets with the stuff. It's a great material to have around.

DavidK60 (author)2016-02-15

You guys missed one out make a DB9 Television Antenna you will also need some timber and copper wire and a balun for the instructions look up making the DB9 TV Antenna.

laith mohamed (author)2016-02-15

Its clever

deswiger (author)2016-02-15

Hey, you know they make great clothes hangers too, oh brother, sorry. The problem when using them for welding is that many have a plastic like coating now a days. If you can find the ones with out this coating or even scrap it off some how, I have used them to repair lawn mower decks, fill in rusted out truck beds, piece back broken yard tools, just to name a few.

jackieray.mays (author)2016-02-14

they work well if you are welding with propane instead of acetylene

gzuckier (author)2016-02-14

My welding textbook said, don't use coat hangers as welding rods. Well, I hadn't thought of it until then... but with a car battery and a set of jumper cables and a coat hanger, you can make a pretty good bad quality weld. Which is often good enough.

DeboraD (author)2016-02-14

My favorite thing to do with a wire hanger is to pull it out to make a big (kind of) oval, stretch an old, clean knee high stocking over it, tape it around the handle part and then let the kids play indoor 'tennis' with a balloon. Works great and keeps them quiet for a long while. Just make sure and move your lamps out of the way ... Learned that one the hard way.

hollyserene (author)2016-02-14

I want to marry this man.

Ha! Finnaly, a lady who understands.

JohnD316 (author)2016-02-14

Some very clever ideas. I looked at all of them. The only problem today is finding the hangers that are heavy enough or light enough to perform all the tasks.

JohnD316 (author)2016-02-14

Don't forget to file the cut ends of the hanger so there is no danger of needing bandaids later.

Gabedini (author)2016-02-14

are well really gonna have this discussion here? Let's not, mmmkay?

IDThoris (author)2016-02-14

Love this. Better drain cleaner by either winding the end around a screw OR using the spiral section from the hanger (at the join with the hook) as is. Get a lot more junk out with the spiral and doesn't get caught on the drain parts.

zeikette (author)2016-02-14

UUHHmmmm , is it just me , or does this have nothing to do with coat-hangers , but everything with regular wire? looks like none of these things has the old form of twisted coat hangers in them?.

Mark AJA (author)2016-02-14

Don't forget the Blue Peter advent candle holder.

If you missed the make in the 1960's, I'm sure they have made them more than once.

Pa1963 (author)2016-02-14

This will work well on drywall, but not on plaster.

fran=1 (author)2016-02-14

I make a paint mixer out of them bend the hanger in a l shape a little smaller than the diameter of the can of paint you have to mix you can put a small v shape part way up the long part of the hanger &chuck it in your drill.i use these a lot

tony_bostony (author)2016-02-14

Someone hadda do it !

kennan (author)tony_bostony2016-02-14

Beat me to it.

AnchorM made it! (author)2016-02-14

G loves g

Magzzee (author)2016-02-14

Great instructable, thanks! Especially loving the large safety pin, awesome!

picturesofsilver (author)2016-02-14

great ideas!

picturesofsilver (author)2016-02-14

great ideas!

sevendayshoppin (author)2016-02-14

This is something I never knew, glad to see a simple thing can make your life far easier than you expect. think I should be buying and using them more now.

wobbler (author)2016-02-14

I wish they were easy to find! Here in the UK they seem to have been superseded by their plastic equivalents, less useful in the world of bodging.

M209T (author)2016-02-14

Cool safety pin!

About This Instructable



Bio: Awesome Gear I've designed myself.
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