DIY Farmhouse Ladder (for less than $6!!)

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Want to know how to make a DIY FARMHOUSE LADDER for less than $6?? Get the ridiculously simple tutorial here!

Originally posted Jan/2017 – Updated Aug/2023

Good Thursday Morning Friends, I hope your week has been wonderful!
Today I’m sharing this DIY Farmhouse Ladder my husband and I made back in 2017.

white chair with colorful curtain and ladder behind chair

Here it is at Christmas…

christmas decorated home with white chair and ladder

Isn’t it a cutie?

I’d been wanting one for a while now but they are pricey if you have to purchase them. I wouldn’t loved to have an original antique one but never came across one. So would have to buy a new one or make one.

Have you seen the prices on them?

I considered this one for months from Amazon >>> 6 ft Rustic Ladder
….. but it is $79.99! No way, I just couldn’t do it.

So guess what? We were able to make this 6-foot ladder for less than $6!

Yep, really. Can’t beat that.
No, it’s not reclaimed wood but I didn’t really need it to be “authentic”. It’s just a ladder….sort of. ;)

Here’s what we used:

3 – 2 x 2 6-foot utility wood (I think that is what they called it – Lowe’s) (less than $2 each)
Wood screws
Pre Stain Wood Conditioner
Finish Coat
White Paint
Chip Brush

wood pieces

One of the pieces was cut into 14-1/2 inch sections and used for the “steps”.
Clearly, they are not wide enough to step on but I was just going for the general look of an old ladder.

wood pieces put together for ladder

We spaced those about 10 inches apart which gave us 5 rungs.
You can see above how the sides are a little rough. That is the look I was going for plus the cost difference was about 6 dollars a piece!
I did, however, clip off those stray wisps of wood sticking out.

Next, I applied a pre-stain conditioner.
Let that sit for about 10 minutes and then apply the stain.

wood ladder stained
I considered giving it a driftwood finish but liked the idea of a nice walnut finish instead.
I did want it to look a bit aged, however, so gave it a touch of dry brushing after the stain had set.

Want to see a VIDEO on exactly how to dry brush? All the ins and outs, here >>> “How To Dry Brush – Video

You can see on the side of the rung there how we screwed it together.
Two screws on each side can be left unfilled or patched. I loved the rustic look of leaving them as-so.

wood ladder with dry brushing

The chip brush is perfect for giving a whitewashed, dry brushed, finish.
That’s what I use most often for that effect.

Finally, I sealed it with a matte finish. Again, I wanted it to look aged, so I didn’t want the finish to be too shiny.

You can see the “whitewash” a little better here…

dry brushed wood ladder with blanket

I think it gives it that tiny little extra bit of aging.

Lots you can do with a DIY farmhouse ladder like this.
How about hanging magazines over the rungs? Or maybe attaching it to the wall and setting framed photos on each rung?
Hang it from the ceiling, parallel to the floor, and hang things from it.
Maybe just throws like I have or you could even just leave it empty.

white chair with ladder and blanket

Either way, making your own DIY farmhouse ladder is the way to go.
This one cost less than $6 but even if you changed the wood style up a bit, you’d still save money making it yourself.

I hope you are inspired to go build one too.
And you could probably get Lowe’s or The Home Depot to cut the rung pieces for you.
You come home and screw it together….and done!

white chair with colorful curtain and ladder

(You can see that “no sew” curtain tutorial and find info on the curtains >>> HERE )

And here it is at a later date…

Anyway, can’t get much easier than that. Or cheaper! $6, wow.

PIN it to save it!

Want to know how to make a DIY FARMHOUSE LADDER for less than $6?? Get the ridiculously simple tutorial here!

Have a wonderful weekend!



  1. Nancy, I love this ladder. I have also been looking for a reasonably priced old ladder…no luck. I wanted to hang mine horizontally above the very large arched opening from the dining room to living room, but I have NO idea on how to decorate it or if I should just leave it plain. Any thoughts or ideas? (I have several old windows hanging on a wall in my living room. And an old door with an antique game cabinet. sitting in front. The ladder would hang on the dining room side.

    1. Hi Lynn!
      Thanks!! :) Yep, they are hard to come by. Hmm, since you are hanging it in an opening between rooms, I would probably leave it plain. You could possibly add some delicate rope style lighting weaved in and around it but I probably wouldn’t hang anything from it in that spot. A bit of greenery is another possible idea. :) The old windows and door sound great too!
      Hope that helps some. xoxo

    2. Well, I had another idea as soon as I hit the enter button, ;) . How about some old antique lanterns? With the other things in your room, that might look really great. :)

  2. Nancy, did you put anything on the bottom of the sides to keep it from sliding around on the floor. I’m afraid I would put throws or magazines on it, lean it against the wall just to have it slide down and scratch the paint. Any ideas of what could be used at the bottom to stabilize it better? Thanks.

    1. Hi Linda,

      No, I actually didn’t . I haven’t had any trouble with it sliding. That might have to do with the fact that the wood is a bit rough and not slick. I think if it were a bit more angled it could, but the way I have it propped, it doesn’t move. You could always put the little rubber/grippy style pads on the bottom so they don’t slide. I think they would do the trick. You can find them in the section at Lowe’s or The Home Depot where the felt furniture pads, etc, are.

  3. Love this!! I used to have a couple of ladders for my throws back in my country decor days, and they were perfect for them. Love this updated version!! XOXO

  4. It looks great, Nancy and reading your tutorial makes it look doable! Like the very subtle white wash over the walnut stain. Wish I could have one of these at my house but that little 21-month old grandson of mine would be trying to climbup it in a heartbeat.

    1. Thanks Marie! :) It is so doable! But I understand, if I had little ones I might have to think twice! Although, I do have it “hidden” behind a chair. ;)

  5. Wow! That is beautiful! I was eyeing one at a Steinmart store and it was $70 – love your decorating style – always gives me inspiration and ideas ?

    1. No, way! See, it’s just too hard to spend that when you now know you can make one for so cheap, right?! ;) And thank you Colleen, for the kind words too!xoxo

  6. You are awesome! I really love these ladders, but I don’t love the price so much… I will definitely be making one of these next week. Thank you so much for sharing!!

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