Easy Organizing: 15-Minute, $15 DIY Floating Steel Notice Bar

Apartment Therapy Reader Project Tutorials

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Want to have a more organized week next week but don't want to spend your entire Sunday building organizing tools? Do you have 15 minutes and $15? You could have a sleek, floating, modern and magnetic "notice" bar — a place to put important things you need to remember. This would be excellent in a home office, but also work great in an entryway, kitchen — anywhere!

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What you need

Materials

  • Level Screwdriver
  • Tape Measure
  • Drill 3/4" diameter
  • Rare Earth Magnets / Cups / Spacers (via Lee Valley Tools)
  • #10 Wood Screws (x2) – more if your notice bar is longer than 36″
  • Flat Steel Bar (I used 2″ x 36″ x 3/16″th. from Home Depot)
  • Wallboard Anchors/Screw Anchors (to receive #10 screw)

Project cost
$15 +/- ($7 steel bar, $7 cup/magnet set, $1 screws/anchors)

*Before beginning, a word of caution. Rare earth magnets are strong enough to rearrange data on hard drives and magnetic stripes on credit cards…so use care when handling.

Instructions

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1. Mark your wall surface at the mounting locations for the magnet cups. I spaced the mounts about 3″ in from each end of the bar for a hovering affect and about 4′ above the floor.

2. If you're not able to hit a wall stud, you'll need a few drywall anchors to hold the screws. Drill the holes in the wall surface and insert your anchors to receive the screws.

3. Place the spacer as shown in the photo against the wall and the magnet cup on top of that with the cup facing outward.

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4. Carefully insert the magnet into the cup being sure to keep it straight. It may leap out of your hands into the cup, it’s that strong.

5. Repeat for additional spacers/cups.

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6. Move the bar into place, again being careful to keep your hands clear it will snap into place when you get close. Once it's in place use your level and make your final alignment.

That’s all there is to it. I personally like the raw steel look, but the steel could be painted, or wire-brushed for a more finished look. I purchased additional rare earth magnets along with my spacer/cup sets as I find they hold just about anything (i.e. multiple layers of paper) to the steel. I’ve also used these cups recessed in door panels to hold pocket doors closed and they make versatile hangers for many different items around the house (kitchen knives, hidden hangers for pictures, if you use steel angle in lieu of the bar you have a small shelf too.)

Have a really great DIY project or tutorial that you want to share with others? Let us know! We love checking out what you're making these days, and learning from our readers. When you're ready, click here to submit your project and photos.

(Image credits: Eric Reinholdt / 30X40 Design Workshop)

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Adrienne photographs beautiful homes in and around her home base of Austin, Texas. She's a contributor to UPPERCASE Magazine and spends all her free time exploring small town Texas. She watches a lot of Star Trek.