DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack

Recently, I made a modern wine rack to sit on top of the buffet in my kitchen. I took my inspiration from modernist wine racks that I’ve seen on the market, but this design can be easily assembled by your average Jane (no welding necessary). The sharp geometry and leather slings of this wine rack are an intriguing combination; your wine bottles won’t just be booze on the shelf, they’ll be a “sculptural display”.

DIY Leather Sling Wine RackView in gallery

Materials to create a DIY Leather Sling Wine RackView in gallery

Materials:

  • Leather strap, 115mm wide x 780mm long (4½” x 31″)
  • Sharp needle for leather stitching and thread to suit
  • Polyurethane glue
  • Black timber screws, at least 45mm (mine were 10g)
  • Drill and bit
  • Clamps (four or more are good)

Timber List: (Use hardwood dressed-all-round)

  • A: 150mm long x 30mm wide x 18mm thick – 8 pieces
  • B: 90mm long x 18mm wide x 18mm thick – 8 pieces
  • C: 95mm long x 30mm wide x 18mm thick – 6 pieces

I used a mitre saw to cut all my timber pieces, but if you have a table saw or something more sophisticated, you do you. (BRB, crying tears of jealousy since I don’t have a table saw.)

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack - ClampsView in gallery

In this tutorial, I’m referring to the different-sized timber pieces as A, B and C, as designated in the cut list above. Dab some glue onto the ends of two B-pieces, then glue flush against the corners of two A-pieces, into a square. Clamp for several hours.

(NB: Polyurethane glue is very useful for woodworking, since it creates a strong bond and expands a little to fill in gaps. If the glue spills out of the gaps while curing, wipe off with turpentine and a rag.)

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack - DrillingView in gallery

Once the squares have cured, add screws for extra stability since those cross-pieces are going to be carrying the weight of the wine bottles. Drill through the corner of A, centered on B, and keep drilling 45-50mm deep into B. Place screws into the drilled holes.

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack - keep going with all piecesView in gallery

Keep going until each of these square pieces has screws in all four corners. (I used black screws since I’m painting the timber black, but I actually like how they look against the raw timber.)

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack - turn c piecesView in gallery

Next, turn two squares upright and glue two C-pieces between, along the bottom. Do the same to the other two square pieces, and then join them together in the same fashion.

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack - paintView in gallery

Here’s how the rack looks, with all the timber fully assembled. I could have kept it unpainted (I like how it looks!) but I painted mine black, since it’s going to sit in front of a dark-colored wall. Raw, painted, stained, varnished, spray-painted neon… it’s all good.

I used an off-the-shelf black enamel paint, oil-based in a satin finish. It takes longer to dry than water-based paint, but it should be hard-wearing.

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack - leather strapView in gallery

Now, the leather slings. I harvested the leather from a thrift store jacket that was nearly unwearable (my apologies, if anyone feels like they got cheated out of a sweet ’80s leather jacket with an elastic waist). The worst of the matted stains came off by applying and removing packing tape.

If your leather is thick enough that it doesn’t need hemming, cut off 1 inch (25mm) from the width and the length. Otherwise, grab a sharp needle and thread and hand-stitch a ½-inch hem all around.

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack - ruller pencilView in gallery

Using a pencil and ruler, draw lines along the sling to mark out these gaps, in this order:

  • 3-inch gap
  • 6-inch gap
  • 3-inch gap
  • 6-inch gap
  • 3-inch gap
  • 6-inch gap
  • 3-inch gap

The 3-inch gaps will wrap around the cross-pieces of the wine rack. It’ll make sense in a minute.

With your needle and thread, sew through the lines marking either side of a 3-inch gap, on the underside of the cross-piece. The lines make it easy to sew through the right places. Repeat for the other three cross-pieces.

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack ProjectView in gallery

Here’s my wine rack, with the leather slings sewn in.

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack CraftView in gallery

And here’s my wine rack on the kitchen buffet that I was talking about. See what I mean about painting it black to match the wall? The leather (and wine) is the focal point.

DIY Leather Sling Wine Rack WineView in gallery

And now my wine rack is doing its Most Important Job: cradling my wine bottles as if they are its boozy children. I’m pleased with how this wine rack turned out, and it’s easy to modify so that it can match its surroundings.