Creative Ways to Use Rope in Your Home’s Décor

It’s turning into rope week here at Driven by Décor! Earlier in the week when I was searching online for a few more lights to add to my post on nautical rope lighting fixtures, I came across all sorts of creative ideas for using rope in home décor.  I’m talking some seriously cool stuff such as suspending beds from the ceiling with rope, as was done in this gorgeous bedroom designed by Caldwell Flake Interiors,

Beds suspended from ceiling by rope - how cool!

as well as this one in the 2007 Coastal Living Idea House:

Beds hung from ceiling with rope

Pottery Barn Kids took it one step further with rope-suspended bunk beds:

Bunk beds suspended from ceiling with rope

While I love the look of these suspended beds, it’s certainly not the most practical of designs.  For a similar look but a more practical application, I L-O-V-E this rope-suspended porch swing that Beth Webb Interiors used for the outdoor living space in the Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles 2008 Designer Showhouse:

Love this couch swing suspended by rope

Another creative idea is to incorporate rope into the design of your stairway. This gorgeous staircase published in House Beautiful shows how Thom Filicia used heavy rope in place of a traditional railing.  I love how it is wrapped around a large cleat and tied in decorative knot at the bottom of the stairs!

Nautical rope used as railing

C Designs designed this unique staircase using rope and boat cleats in place of banisters

Rope and boat cleats used along staircase

while Ken Pursley designed this amazing staircase with rope in the rebuilding of a farmhouse, Belk Farm, in South Carolina:

Hanging pendant lighting with thick rope adds texture and interest to fixtures that wouldn’t look nearly as cool hung with a typical chain:

Rope is also the perfect material to use for hanging a collection of lanterns:

Pottery Barn Hanging Lanterns

Potter Barn In-Store Display

Morgan of The Brick House came up with the creative idea of making a rope wall in order to create defined areas in a large warehouse space without sacrificing the open feel:

Rope used as dividing wall

Another creative use of rope is seen in Traditional Home’s Alys Beach Designer Showhouse where hanging shelves were created using jute rope and driftwood:

Shelves created with driftwood and rope

Restoration Hardware used a similar idea on a larger scale to make a creative display for pillows.  I love how they used a pair of antique pulleys at the top – I may just have to attempt to DIY this for shelving in our bedroom…

Restoration Hardware Rope Hung Shelving

To incorporate rope into your home’s décor on a much smaller scale, use Martha Stewart’s example of a rope towel holder and mirror to create this look:

Rope Towel Holder

or make it really simple and pick up a pair of Restoration Hardware’s Dakota Rope Drapery Tiebacks:

Restoration Hardware Rope Drapery Tieback

Which idea is your favorite??  

KJ Signature


  1. Anonymous says

    Thank you for posting this. I saw the rope shelves at Restoration Hardware a few months ago and forgot to snap a pic. The shelves are mounted to the wall and the rope is just threaded through the corners. Brilliant.

  2. says

    Oops – I mistakenly deleted this comment from “Captain Will” since it went into my spam comments – He has some great points so I wanted to make sure it got posted:
    “To anyone who uses these (wonderful) ideas: Please make sure the connections are done by someone who knows what they are doing if you support people or weights overhead or precious posessions. Some of the knots shown are not safe. Use hardware of adequate strenth, and make sure any cieling connections go through the drywall and are firmly supported by the joists above! Note that at least one of the beds shown also has feet on the floor.”

  3. says

    Hi Kris – I have been collecting images of rooms with ropes also – been thinking about doing a blogpost on it. You have some images the same – and a few that I hadn’t seen before. nice post. You beat me to it!!!


    Linda Leyble

  4. Anonymous says

    Love the use of ropes for decorating…where do you find the really thick roping…I’ve looked everywhere!?
    Thanks for sharing!

    • John says

      A couple of add’l ideas for the nautical rope theme:

      When you’re at a marine supply store, pick up a Ship’s Bell – they are made in different sizes – hang outside next to the back door so it can be used to call your family/guests to the waiting Shore Dinner. The rope pull can be made inexpensively (but with some time and effort) with designs perfected over many sea voyages by the sailors who wanted to dress up their ships with “fancy work”.

      Books such as “The Marlinspike Sailor” get into the details of how to transform a small section of rope into something both beautiful and functional.

      Same approach to make Stair Mats, rope handles for:Sea Chests (toy chests for the polywogs) and Rope Mats to hang vertically for either a play area or a privacy fence.

      I wish you all “fair winds and following seas”.

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