Outside a Closet Rod.

Saturday, April 29, 2023

copper pipe outside a closet rod
Ok, this surely sounds confusing and bizarre, an outside a closet rod, but hear me out.  And once you do, you’ll want one, or several, too.

Generally speaking, this is similar in concept to say, a valet rod, but given our bifold closet doors or, in the case of Mike’s office, above the room’s door itself, a valet rod wouldn’t work.  Or, I guess it would there but it wouldn't as he'd hit his head incessantly and break the darn thing within a day or two.

Regardless, those valet rods are best installed in roomier closets or ones with a swinging door, or some such, neither of which we really have.

Ok, so what prompted this seemingly whack-a-doo outside a closet rod idea?  

copper pipe outside a closet rod over doorway
Well.  I saw something online somewhere briefly, very similar though I don’t remember where or who or how or what, and ugh mistakenly didn’t save it because I was tired and not thinking.

Too, every day Mike irons a dress shirt for work and hangs it off a door, or door trim, any convenient spot.  He twists the hanger* hook which invariably breaks the hanger.  And, I love him, but he leaves the hangers, and parts, everywhere.

Then in pondering this idea a bit further, I realized oh, how many times have I pulled something from the closet I intended to wear but had nowhere to stage it, if you will.  Huh.

So this solves a multitude of aggravations, probably not the hangers everywhere matter though.  And, however you want it achieved, this wee project can run the gamut of super affordable to as expensive as you can handle.  All in about a half hour's time!  Sweet!

door before
In pondering how to accomplish this little DIY outside a closet rod, given I didn’t save what I saw and don’t remember how that was done, I realized how crazy easy this is to do and there are so many flippin' options at hand.

Heh so first was narrowing down those options based on functionality as well as appearances and I went with...
Why the deep curtain rod brackets*?  So that I could clear the trim around the door handily and shirts or whatever can hang freely.  Too, I picked ones that have those itty screws that tighten up onto the pipe, keep the pipe from slipping out.  Because I know Mike.

taping screws together to not lose them
Hot tip:  tape the little screws together so you don't lose them as these are key!
Why the copper pipe?  Because I intend also to put one a' these up in our bedroom and it will match the other copper pipe I've already got going on.  This is a trial-run in Mike's office.  Lucky guy!
supplies for outside a closet rod valet type rod
Plus, metal, no painting required and no touching up paint as it wears from hangers sliding.  Plus too, I like the look of the copper.  But, feel free to paint away as desired.

Easily a wood dowel will work, galvanized pipe, PVC pipe, and if you don't plan to slide hangers across, a stick or a piece of rebar will also do the trick.  You get it.

How much did this project cost me?  Fifteen for the copper pipe, about four bucks or so for the pipe caps, and eight dollars for one set of brackets.  Quick math...twenty seven bucks.  Not too bad.

All righty, first step in my process, and you may or may not need or want to do this, was spray painting the curtain rod brackets which I did so with the very last dying gasps of my can of dark blue with a bum sprayer top.  That was a panic moment; can't buy spray paint in the city.

spray painted curtain brackets in dark blue
Hard to tell these aren't black, heh, but actually dark blue.
Anyway, ok, sprayed and dried and ready.

Next was determining where around the door in Mike's office I wanted this sweet little outside a closet rod to sit.  He's taller than me, longer arm reach, but I also wanted to make sure shirts and sh*t swung freely and easily.

Mike, again, I love him, but he has zero patience in the world for less than easy-peasy functionality.  If it don't work, he ain't usin' it, and this wonderful helpful thing I'm doing for him would all be for naught.

Right.  So ok, time for some figuring, some head tilts, measuring, lining things up, finding studs* as necessary though I had a vague sense of the door construction.  Though, ya know, who knows with this dumb flipper, right?!

placing curtain rod bracket outside door trim
Aligning things so that the pipe lined up with the door jamb, the top of the door frame, or, in overexplaining, the bottom of the horizontal trim.
Zip zip, up went the brackets.

curtain brackets installed
Measuring the length for the copper pipe was next.  I wanted it to overhang the brackets a bit and since my piece of pipe was five feet long, I had plenty of wiggle room to work with.

measuring pipe overhang
Trimmed that up with my grinder* and, for the twelfth time of going up and down, I was back upstairs (holy cow how things have changed in seven years since that post).

Slid the pipe through the brackets and tightened down the little screws to hold the pipe in place.

tightening copper pipe in bracket
Make sure to orient the hole for these little screws so it faces up, that way you don't see it.
Last but not least, slip the pipe caps on and voilá!

copper pipe outside a closet rod over door done
Half hour later, it's an outside a closet rod!

outside a closet rod over a doorway installed

Super handy, right?!  See, outside a closet rod, it's a thing!  Have fun!

shirt hanging from outside a closet rod

*The velvet hangers, curtain rod brackets, and metal screw-in wall anchors are Amazon affiliate links.  The copper pipe, pipe caps, Zircon stud finders, and grinders are Home Depot affiliate links.  Mwah, thanks!  Please see the "boring stuff" tab for more info.


  1. Nice, very clever ! You can also place a curtain, to hide the closet! Or a mess 😂🤩🙌

    1. Aw thank you so much! You're so right, this project can do so many things! Thank you!


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