Make a wood doormat and make money


This project began as a germ of an idea. My wife took a picture of a rustic door mat she found that was made entirely out of sticks. I had never thought about wood doormats, so I looked online to find some precedent. Turns out, there are many.

Door mats are expensive!

But what caught my interest the most were the prices being charged: typically between $100 and $200 each.

I mulled it over a while to see if I could design something just as durable, yet easy and inexpensive to make. My first thought was to essentially make a miniature version of a deck. The problem here is that I didn’t want to have to attach the individual planks with screws, which would look unpleasant. Plus, spacing the boards would be difficult: if they are even slightly askew, it would be blatantly apparent on such a small scale.

After many sketches, I finally came up with an elegant way to build this. It solves the problem of screwing in planks, and allows for expansion and contraction. But the best part: the board cost me $12. The only other supplies needed are two steel rods and 30 flat washers from the plumbing department. Total cost: $24. I’ll bet you could sell these for over $100. If you use teak, you could double the price. Hey, why not try making some extra cash?

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  1. Nah, I wouldn’t say the stupidest bit…it’s close, but I’d say it’s number 2 or 3.
    Good idea, Steve. I might have to try making one of those. I’ve got some Ipe’ that would work. It’s only 3/4″ thick though so it would be a good choice for the slats, but I’d have to use something thicker for the frame.

  2. you cut the rounded edges of the board off and then rounded the pieces anyway 🙂

    that’s a really great project and it looks very professional.

  3. Redwood it cheap. It might be interesting to have a contrasting wood for the frame. BTW, I tested the 3/4″ slats before I built this. A single slat 14″ long easily holds my weight (185 lbs). And with them all in there, the weight is spread out.

  4. I’m an old softie when it comes to door mats. Or rather I like my door mats old and soft. But if I were to do this I’d run the slats parallel to the threshold. Just seems to make more grippy sense to me is all. I think I’d have run the edge bevels lower as well. Yours did come out real good looking though. It’s positively louver-ly!

  5. Might have been one of your stupidest scenes yet… but I loved it! Funniest thing I’ve seen all day. And a great project, too! You continue to impress me.

  6. Yeah, I liked it so much …I made one for my house — love it. I might end up making one for a friend of mine at work for 80.00 bucks.

  7. What was the reason in not cutting the slats all the same lenght to begin with, it seems it would have saved you a couple steps. Maybe more.


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