An old iron gate can be used to create a stylish pot rack for your kitchen.

How to Make a Pot Rack Using an Old Gate

by Maria Magher

Pot racks are both decorative and functional. They create an interesting decor element in your kitchen while also putting your pots and pans where you can easily reach them while you're cooking. However, a nice pot rack can also be quite pricey. An old wrought-iron gate can be upcycled into a gorgeous pot rack for far less -- maybe even for free. Use what you have from your own garden or scour local yard sales and consignment shops for a good deal.

Clean your iron gate using a stiff brush and soapy water. Be sure to get into all the nooks and crannies, removing any dirt and flaky paint.

If there is rust on your gate, spray it with a chemical rust remover. Follow the manufacturer's directions for how long to let the rust remover to remain on the gate. Use the stiff brush to scrub away the rust and then wipe the whole gate down with a damp clean cloth.

Spray the gate with a primer that is designed specifically for metal. Cover every inch of the surface with the primer, including any nooks and crannies.

Paint the gate in your choice of color. Be sure to use a paint that is designed for metal for good coverage and a solid bond.

Locate the ceiling joists where you can hang your pot rack using a stud finder.

Measure the length and width of your gate and determine where to mark the locations for your eye screws on the ceiling.

Predrill holes for the eye screws using a drill bit that is slightly smaller than the screws. Insert eye screws that will support the weight of your gate plus the weight of the pots and pans you anticipate hanging on it.

Clip a "D" shackle to each corner of the gate.

Measure the distance from the ceiling to your gate at the height at which you want it to hang. Cut the wire ropes to this length plus about six to eight inches extra.

Attach a wire thimble to each "D" shackle, then slide a wire rope around each wire thimble. Clamp the rope with a wire clamp.

Attach a wire thimble to each eye screw. Run the wire attached to your pot rack through each wire thimble, then fasten it with a wire clamp.

Add "S" hooks at various locations along your gate from which to hang your pots and pans.

Items you will need

  • Iron gate
  • Rust remover
  • Stiff scrub brush
  • Metal primer
  • Metal paint
  • 4 "D" shackles
  • 8 Wire thimbles
  • Wire rope
  • Wire rope clamps
  • Eye screws
  • Drill
  • Stud finder
  • Measuring tape
  • "S" hooks


  • Use an exterior-grade paint and primer to give your new pot rack added protection against the harsh elements of the kitchen, such as extreme heat, steam and oil.
  • Use a heavy-duty chain to attach your pot rack instead of the wire cable to save yourself a number of steps. With the chain, you simply need to attach "S" hooks to the gate and to the chain, then attach the chain to to your eye screws on the ceiling. The gate will be just as sturdy, and you can save yourself time and money.


  • Always wear safety goggles when using power tools.
  • Prime and paint your gate in a ventilated area, and wear a safety mask.

About the Author

Maria Magher has been working as a professional writer since 2001. She has worked as an ESL teacher, a freshman composition teacher and an education reporter, writing for regional newspapers and online publications. She has written about parenting for Pampers and other websites. She has a Master's degree in English and creative writing.

Photo Credits

  • Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images