25 Unique Ways to Decorate with Vintage Ladders

 One of my favorite things about the Country Living Fair was seeing all of the different ways that vendors used vintage pieces to display their wares. Old vintage ladders were one of the things that I noticed being used again and again as part of creative displays. It got me thinking about the possibility of using a vintage ladder for a bare corner in my living room so I went looking for some design inspiration to see what others have done with vintage ladders in their homes. I was astounded by the number of creative ways that I found to repurpose ladders and by the decorative interest they added to these homes so I’ve put my favorites together in a post to share my inspiration!
25 Unique Ways to Use Vintage Ladders

One of the simplest uses of vintage ladders is to prop them up against a wall and drape items on the rungs. Tracey chose to hang grain sacks from her vintage ladder as part of her gorgeous studio as seen on her blog, French Larkspur

Ladder with vintage grain sacks

while Becky, who blogs at Buckets of Burlap, hung pretty embroidered towels from the painted ladder in her home.

Vintage ladder used in kitchen for hanging towels

Ladders with flat rungs can be used to display favorite items in your home, such as these gorgeous sea colored bottles that Maria of Dreamy Whites displayed on her vintage ladder

Sea colored bottles on vintage ladder

or the vintage books and candles that Jennifer of The Old Painted Cottage has displayed on the ladder in her dining room (I love the script writing along the ladder’s side!)

Vintage ladder used as decorative shelving

Brittany of Pretty Handy Girl used her handiness to add wood shelves to a vintage ladder, creating more space to display decorative items on her screened porch.
Vintage ladder used as shelving - great idea!
A vintage ladder is ideal for those hard-to-decorate corners of a room.
To create more shelving space, place two ladders side by side and add distressed shelves across the rungs, as was done in this home office decorated by Matilda Rose Interiors.
Two ladders with boards between them make creative shelving A vintage ladder becomes an instant conversation piece when suspended from the ceiling and used for hanging lanterns

or hanging a group of simple mason jars filled with candles, as Beth shows us on her blog Unskinny Boppy.

Mason jar candles hung from ladder suspended above table Liz of Savvy Seasons (now The Tuscan Home) decorated her vintage ladder for the season by wrapping it with grapevines and autumn leaves.

Vintage ladder suspended over table with leaves and lanterns hanging from it - beautiful!
A suspended ladder can also be used as a unique pot rack, as shown by 
Sarah of A Beach Cottage

Vintage ladder used as a pot rack

and Laurie of Welcome to the Turner Farm

Hanging vintage ladder used as kitchen pot rack

If you don’t have the right place for a ladder in your kitchen or family room, I found several creative ways to incorporate one into the décor of your bedroom. Laurel from Chipping with Charm used a vintage ladder to create a unique canopy for her bed – amazing!

Vintage ladder used as charming canopy over bed

Funky Junk Interiors is always coming up with the most creative ways to repurpose “junk” – this vintage ladder is decorated so beautifully that it becomes a piece of art for the bedroom. 
Vintage ladder used for hanging clothes

Sarah from Life on Walnut Street turned her vintage ladder into a coat rack in her mudroom

Vintage ladder used as coat rack while this vintage ladder from Mia’s Interior became the perfect place to display framed photos and art.

Vintage ladder used to display framed photos and art

Anne at White Lace Cottage created a unique decorative element by placing a vintage ladder across the top of two open cabinets in her kitchen.
Vintage ladder spans kitchen cabinet to create a unique spot to display accessories
Old ladders are also perfect spots for plants, both inside your home

and outside in your outdoor living space or garden.

I also love the ideas of using a vintage ladder to:

  • hold towels in a bathroom such as {here} and {here}
  • hold jewelry such as {here}
  • hold unique boot planters as shown {here}

If you have a front porch, think about using a vintage ladder when you decorate the outside of your home this fall. Which idea is your favorite?

KJ Signature


  1. Andrea says

    LOVE your blog. LOVE. And I don’t go around telling all the bloggers that. :) Thanks for so generously sharing your creativity and talent!

  2. says

    All are great ideas! Now to go to second hand stores, and thrift stores and see if I can find some old wooden ladders. If I paint them cool teen colors then I have some great ways to help my teenage daughter organize her room while making it look great at the same time!

  3. says

    Found you on a link (forgot where) and I am your newest follower! Your posts are charming… I got lost in quite a few!! Please come by if you have time and say hello :)

  4. Anonymous says

    I have an idea for an outdoor ladder. A single wooden ladder could be covered on both sides with hardware wire or chicken wire, filled with dirt and a layer of moss, then hung on or leaned against a fence or wall. use it for a vertical garden, lettuces, succulents or flowers. Drip water from the top of course.

  5. Anonymous says

    I must go hunting for an old ladder at my husbands mom n dads farm they must have one in the old barn!! Loved all the ideas thanks so much for your creative charm!!

  6. says

    How do I decide???? If I had to pick I must admit I loved the one with the writing on the side of the ladder. But there are so many great ones. Thanks for sharing.


  7. says

    I was turned on to the ladder idea as a book shelf….the problem is finding them! Thank you for all the great ideas!!! I love all of them!!! Beautifully done!

  8. says

    You should also keep in mind that a plant will have different branching structures throughout its growth.
    Had you always been thinking to upgrade the pavers of the
    patio. Crushed and made into soft, tumbled stone, glass
    becomes a practical and visually appealing second-hand product.

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