DIY Copper Hanging Rack for LESS

We are getting back to our roots and are going to start updating this blog which has been the core of our online success. Since our last post, a lot has changed in our lives. 

Today we are bringing you such an easy and inexpensive DIY and I'm honestly not sure why this isn't more common. We have been finishing our tiny home and we have been working with a limited budget. However we haven't wanted to sacrifice a beautiful aesthetic, which has lead us to DIYing just about everything.

This blog has documented several of DIYs and it's funny to see how much our styles have changed over the years. I remember a time when neon decor was cool and we painted a coffee table in many shades of neon colors. When I see pictures of it now, I think it looks horrible but we loved it at the time. We have always loved color but we are using it more sparingly in our new home. Our previous home was boho, eclectic, colorful, and had a lot of bold statements. All of that totally fit our style, location, and home at the time. But now we are in a tiny home in a very rural setting and having black and white geometric wallpaper with banana leaf covered dining chairs just doesn't seem to the right vibe. 

Our new design vibe is French country, English cottage, cozy, and more neutral with a little color here and there. The house is not done yet and we only have bare drywall in our living room but our kitchen is turning out to be lovely if I do say so myself. When looking for inspiration for our kitchen, a lot of the kitchens I loved had a gold or copper hanging rack. The ones you can buy are outrageously expensive but luckily for you and me, we have an inexpensive and easy DIY to get the same look. 

Materials for this project:

1/2'' Copper pipe 

Copper elbows

Copper bell hangers

Copper S hooks Option 1

Copper S hooks Option 2

Copper End Cap

Copper Pipe Cutter


- Copper Bonding "glue" (optional)

Step 1. Figure out how long you want your copper rack and cut your copper pipe to that length. You can use this tool to cut the copper pipe. The reader's digest version of how to use it is to tighten the cutter around the pipe (with the pipe sitting perfectly in between the two rollers) and roll it around the pipe. You may have to tighten the cutter as you go and depending on what size cutter you purchased, it could take up to 20 turns.

Step 2. Find the studs in your wall. Make a note of where they are and then measure how high you want the bar to go. It's helpful to have an idea of what you want to hang on your rack so you know how high it needs to be. Mark this height on the studs. We did three bell hangers for a 6' span which adds up to about 32" between each bell hanger.

Step 3. Attach the bell hangers to the studs. We started out using the screws that came with the bell hangers but they would sometimes break. We ended up using some 2 1/2" wood screws we had laying around.

Step 4. Put the copper pipe into the bell hanger and screw the bell hangers closed.

Step 5. Add the caps to the end of the pipe so that you don't have sharp ends. We did not permanently attach the caps. If you want to do that, you can use a special bonding product to secure the caps to the pipe. 

Step 6. Add your hooks and hang up all your kitchen wares you want to put on display. Here are some of the things that we have added to ours: 

Copper colander

Hanging Baskets

Scissors Option 1

Scissors Option 2

- Mini Oven Mitts

- Enamelware Ladle

The addition of this rack makes our low budget kitchen look more expensive and elegant. We have enjoyed playing around with the things we hang on the rack. It's a great place to hang seasonal decor. It's really nice to have the things we use most often in such an easy to reach place. 

So if you aren't an expert DIYer, you don't have a lot of storage space, and you want to add some pizzazz without breaking the bank, this is the project for you! 

DIY Seed Starting Shelf For Under $100

We are hoping to be able to have a garden this year but with all of the other massive off-grid projects we have going on, we aren’t sure how big of a garden we will have. However, last year on our urban homestead we started a massive garden and we grew 90% of it from seed. We came up with an inexpensive seed starting shelf system that worked really well for us.

I came up with something that you could order online and have delivered straight to your door, and it's only two products that add up to under $100.

For this project you will need:
- Scrap wood pieces
- Yarn or String 
- Timer (not necessary, but convenient) 

If you want to get fancy and more hands off, you could purchase a timer like we did. I used scrap wood and yarn that I already had, so you can probably find something around the house to use instead of those things. Anything that is straight and rigid could be used. Think scrap metal, extra PVC pipe, wood, etc.

I found this shelf on Amazon and it seemed perfect for what I needed. I wanted to be able to put trays on the shelves, I needed some holes in the shelves to be able to attach the lights to, and I didn't want to spend a lot of money.

You also need to have a specific kind of light. I did a lot of research about what kind you need for your seedlings and found these lights that replicate the perfect amount of daylight.

If you are in a place where you really have to consider your electricity use (like most of us off-griders) these lights use 20W per light. That isn’t too bad when you are talking about 1 light, but having more lights will start to add up. You could certainly nix the lights and put the shelf near a window and rely on daylight itself. But if you have the power, this setup will use about 160W per hour it’s on. A good solution might be to use the daylight in the daytime and then use the lights when the sun goes down. It’s important for your seedlings to get about 14-16 hours of daylight, so the supplemental light would be really helpful.

Once you have your shelf and lights, all that's left to do is assemble your setup. First start by assembling the shelf, which is very simple and self explanatory.

Next, use the provided light clips and attach them to your materiel of choice. Because I used wood, I just screwed the clips onto the wood without pre-drilling. If you use another material you may have to pre-drill a hole.

I have 8 lights over 4 shelves, so I need 8 pieces of wood. Each wood gets 2 clips screwed on in the exact same place on each piece. This is so I can attach 2 lights.

Once the clips were attached, I clipped in the lights. Make sure the wood pieces are spaced out toward the edge rather than the middle. This part can be a little finicky as the clips can get stretched out when you screw them in. When this happened all i did was pinch the two side pieces together. Once you get started on this project, you will really understand what i mean.

The lights can all be connected together with the provided cords. There are instructions, but it’s pretty intuitive also. One light will have a cord with a plug on it and then the rest connect to each other with the interconnecting cords.
I tied four pieces of yarn on each set of lights- two on each end. Then I took the yarn and looped it through the shelf above and tied them as evenly as possible. I also only tied them with a bow (not a knot) so that i could untie them and lower or raise the lights as needed. When you start your seeds the lights will need to be really close to the soil. As the seedlings grow you will need to raise the lights higher so they don’t burn the tender leaves.

And that’s about it! You could really do this with any shelf you already have and just buy the lights. I know when I did some research for something similar to this that you didn’t have to DIY, it was pretty expensive for some lights and a shelf. The key is getting the correct lights that mimic daylight. Warm lighting will not work here! 

Let us know if you try this DIY and how it works out for you! Leave us any questions in the comments below. Thanks for reading!

Instant Shed Build With Heartland Sheds

Today we are sharing our experience with getting a shed installed with Heartland Sheds. Full disclosure this shed was provided at no cost to us in return for our documenting the process on our blog and social media channels. As always all thoughts and opinions are our own.

We have needed a shed for YEARS!!! A few years ago we had our old shed torn down with the intentions of having a new one built quickly afterwards. That clearly didn't happen but we finally got one and we are so excited!! 
Let's talk about the process of having Heartland Sheds coming and build a shed for us. So when you go onto Heartland's website you'll pick out the shed/building that you want. We got the Classic Shed in the 12X16 size. Once you order it, someone from Heartland will contact within 3 business days to schedule your installation. Our installation date was 6 weeks from the time we ordered our shed. 

After that you need to check your backyard and have an area leveled that will fit the dimensions of the shed. You will need to make sure that the builders have 3 feet of space on all sides. So you don't want to level out a space right next to a fence or another building. The builders need to be able to move around when they are assembling your shed. 

The picture above here is the area we chose to have the shed built. What you can't really tell in this picture is how sloped our backyard is. The only other level area in our backyard was right next to the long white garden beds by our deck/patio area. Savannah did a mock up on Photoshop to show what the shed would look like in different places in our backyard. The space we chose is the only place where it didn't look weird.

We hired a company to come and create a level place to build the shed. It cost $600 to have someone level this massive area. I was honestly thinking it was going to cost more because of how much ground they had to dig. The downside is that it has left this part of our backyard a total mess. We still haven't gotten around to laying down grass seed. 

The guys that came out to level the ground also marked out the area where the shed was going to be built so that was nice. Having that big area cleared out really changed the slope of our backyard. 

Once installation day arrived the Heartland shed people got right to work. They had this platform built so quickly. It was pretty incredible watching them build the shed.

All of the wood comes pre cut and ready to assemble so that makes things go a lot quicker. There were 4 people to get the shed built. 

The builders were here for about 8 hours. Overall we had a really positive experience with Heartland Sheds. The only thing I would do differently is to have them paint the shed. When we were negotiating the terms of our agreement that's not something we worked in and I wish we would have just paid them to do it. Painting the shed only took an afternoon so it wasn't the worst thing we've had to do. But it sat unfinished in our backyard for about a month. What is great about Heartland Sheds is that they are primed, so you don't have to worry about that step.

Now we've got to finish moving all the things all over house that need to permanently live in the shed. Our studio in our house is full of items that have just been waiting to have a shed to be stored inside. It's a slow going process because this is the busiest time for us in the Stock Tank Pool Authority world and the gardening world. We cleaned up our deck though and it was amazing how much stuff we could put in the shed and not have sitting all over our deck. So grateful!

If your wanting a shed, we recommend checking out Heartland Sheds. Also check our You Tube video above where we talk about our experience with Heartland. Thanks for stopping by and don't forget to follow us on all our socials. We're most active on Instagram, and we're on TikTok now and we share a lot of gardening info there.