How to Build a Basic Shaker Peg Rail

Joining you today from the train home from Martha Stewart's American Made Event in NYC, and let me tell you how excited I was to GO and how very excited I am to get HOME. I need to get home to my baby girl pronto!!! (...and in case you were winding, I DID get within feet of Martha, but alas, did not actually get to talk to her. However, I DID accost Barbara Corcoran in her taxi cab for a quick chat! #missionaccomplished)

Back to baby girl though...I miss her. A lot a lot. I miss the boys a bunch too, but as any nursing mama knows, you REALLY miss your baby.  So in honor of pen-pen, today's project  is her wall of Shaker peg racks full to brimming with dresses and caps!  Join me as I show you how to make this functional design statement for pennies!

DIY Basic Shaker Peg Rail Low Cost Inexpensive IKEA DIY Nursery at A Nest for All Seasons


  • Pegs
  • Rails (Buy new wood or use recycled planks)
  • Hot Glue or E600
  • 1/2 inch drill bit and drill
  • Spray Paint (or regular old paint, but spray is easier on the pegs)
  • Nails, Hammer, Pencil and  rulers (or any straight edge you can measure with)
  • Decorative Washi Tape (I used THIS DESIGN in yellow and grey)


Believe it or not, the most difficult aspect of this project is the measuring and keeping track of which "rail" is which!  If you are simply doing one rail with 4-6 pegs, your job is a little easier, but I wanted a whole WALL of peg rails and I wanted to use recycled wood, so my job was a little more difficult.  I decided to upcycle these slats of wood from the bottom of a bunkbed (the ones my boys completely collapsed right HERE -- they aren't monkeys or anything :)  The wood pieces were sitting in the garage, in perfect condition, and I knew they were the perfect size for these rails I wanted to make, so I measured the wall space, organized smaller pieces and had my husband cut them to size.  If you are buying wood new, they will cut it down for you at the store.  Just make sure you know your measurements before going in!  Any kind of wood, any size larger than 2 by 2 will work for a peg rail!

DIY Basic Shaker Peg Rail Low Cost Inexpensive IKEA DIY Nursery at A Nest for All Seasons

Once you have the rails measured and cut, it is time to measure and mark where the pegs will go.  I decided to stagger my pegs on the 
different levels of railings, but spaced them all the same.  Imagine what you are hanging on the pegs eventually and space accordingly.  
I am hanging little dresses from wooden hangers, so my spacing is wider than a rack where you would hang slim aprons, etc.

lining up multiple rails amy renea a nest for all seasons

In the middle of each peg line, I measured and marked a hole dot directly in the center.  
Skip this step and your pegs will look wonky once you get them drilled and into the rail!

measuring lines amy renea peg rail

Tired of measuring and marking and preparing??  Well, you are almost finished, but you need to make sure your rails are lettered by row and position is you are working with multiple rails.  They WILL get mixed up and you will be so very disappointed when your end project doesn't come together the way you saw it in your head, so make sure to measure, label, reorganize and DO IT AGAIN!

lettering and numbering pegs

NOW comes the fun part!  Break out your drill and a 1/2 inch drill bit (the perfect size for these consumer crafts pegs) and drill a hole all the way through your rail.  Put a little glue on the inside of the hole (NOT on the peg) and simple stick the peg in the hole.

amy renea a nest for all seasons inserting pegs
Before painting, line those puppies up again in order to make sure all your pegs are spaced exactly right.
lining up peg rails amy renea a nest for all seasons crafts unleashed

Once you have finished painting, RE-LABEL your boards with letters and numbers before moving them.  
Use a small piece of masking tape to write on or simply write on the back.  
Doublecheck your rails fit in the room, find the studs in your wall and nail directly into the studs through the rail.

peg rail full view amy renea a nest for all seasons

Frustrated with the nail holes?   Cover the nail holes with covers or simply paint them your rail color!

peg rail dresses amy renea a nest for all seasons crafts unleashed

I ended up painting the nailheads white to match the rails and then added a decorative washi tape stripe that covered them completely.  The tape goes on vertically in groups of 2 or 3 stripes and I placed these randomly along the rails (even where there were no holes to cover up) for a fun and practical design boost.

peg rail diptych amy renea anest for all seasons

Last step?
Hang those pegs with pretty things and enjoy your peg rail!!