Make a cool splash beside your home’s entrance with this big-and-bold display that doubles as a handy coatrack.
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From the sheet of 3/4-inch-thick plywood, cut a panel 42 inches wide by 94-1/2 inches tall. If you don’t have a table saw or circular saw and straightedge, ask a Lowe’s associate to make the cuts at the store.
From the 1 x 3 boards, cut the sides 95-1/4 inches long. From the 1 x 2 boards, cut two pieces 42 inches long for the top, bottom, and two trim pieces. From the 1 x 4 boards, cut three pieces 42 inches long. From the 1 x 6 boards, cut three pieces 42 inches long. From the 1 x 10 and 1 x 12 boards, cut one piece each 42 inches long. Apply the stain of your choice (Dark Walnut and Weathered Gray shown) and let dry (Entry Art Layout Guide). Then apply two coats of clear Polycrylic finish on both the stained and unfinished boards.
If you plan to grout around the inset penny tiles in the wood, a clear finish will help keep grout from collecting in the wood pores.
On one of the 1 x 6 boards and the 1 x 12 board, drill random 1-inch holes for the penny tiles. Use a tape flag on your drill bit to make sure the holes are just deep enough for the tiles to be flush with the wood surface. Remove a row of penny tiles from the mesh backing, apply adhesive to the back of an individual tile, and press it into a hole in the wood. Repeat for the remaining tiles.
With the plywood panel lying horizontally on its back, measure and mark lines across the width of the panel at 4 inches and 8-1/2 inches from the top. Make a second pair of lines 44-1/4 inches and 51-1/4 inches from the top. Apply two coats of paint (Urban Sunrise shown) between the top two and bottom two lines as a background for the tiles you’ll install later.
Tape a 1 x 4 board in place 1 inch from the top of the plywood panel without gluing it. Fill the 1-inch space with a row of penny tiles just touching the 1 x 4 board.
Measure 7 inches from the top of the plywood and glue a stained 1 x 6 board to the plywood panel. (You’ll just cover one edge of the painted strip from Step 4.) Use adhesive to attach a row of mosaic tiles to the painted strip above the 1 x 6.
Follow the Entry Art Layout Guide and continue adding tiles and wood strips until you reach the space occupied by the 1 x 12 board. Tape this board in place against the plywood panel without glue. Add tiles and wood strips until you reach the bottom; then remove the 1 x 12 board and finish it.
Paint the sides, top, and bottom (Ultra White shown). Then nail the sides to the long edges of the panel so that the top ends extend 3/4 inch beyond the top end of the plywood panel. Paint the 1 x 2 top and bottom and nail them in place against the ends of the panel.
Using a grout float, force grout around the penny tiles in the 7-1/4-inch-tall band just above the center. Holding the float at an angle, wipe the grout from the face of the tiles. Then wipe away the grout haze with a moist sponge, rinsing it frequently.
Using your finger, press the grout around the row of single penny tiles at the top and bottom. Finish the grout as you did in Step 1. Repeat for the grout around the two bands of mixed mosaic tiles.
Allow the grout to harden for at least three days before moving the entry art coatrack to install it.
Remove the two boards taped in place and stand the panel where you plan to install it. The width of the panel should span two studs in the wall. Find the stud locations and transfer them to sections of the panel where the boards were removed.
Drive 3-inch deck screws through the plywood into the wall studs on the top and bottom strips. Check that the panel is firmly attached to the wall.
Glue and attach the two boards, covering up the screws.
Screw five evenly spaced coat hooks to the 1 x 10 board.
This eye-catching mix of tiles and wood doubles as a handy place to store coats, scarves, and bags. If you customize a version of your own, share it with us.