This is one of my favorite things around the house.
The first time I noticed an egg rack was in a movie. It was Gosford Park, and believe me or don’t believe me, but I was more interested in this thing than in Clive Owen. I froze the movie over and over to get a better look (at the egg rack). It was in the kitchen, of course, and the one at Gosford was much bigger than this single-dozen number, but I was smitten. I had to make one for my own hens’ beautiful eggs.
Here is what I did, step by step, including instructions for the distressed/antiqued finish. I use it all the time and every time I put in an egg it makes me happy.
It would make a fine Valentine’s Day present for your favorite chickenista.
Supplies not pictured above: wood glue, 4 @ 3/16″x 2″ dowel screws, paint and brushes.
After assembling all your supplies, tools, and materials, here’s how you put it together:
Step 1: Marking the boards
With the pencil and the square, mark off two , 9-in. lengths on the 5 1/2 inch wide 1/2 inch craft wood board. You won’t cut them apart yet, just make your pencil marks. (It’s much easier to clamp and drill the long board than two small boards). They are identical with one exception: you are going to drill 1/2 in. holes in the corners of one section and 1/8 in. holes in the other.
Make marks 7/8″ from the two edges of each of the eight corners.
Make 6 marks on each board 2 1/4″ from the short sides and from each other and 1 1/2″ from the long sides as shown in the photo above.
Step 2: Drilling the holes
Fit the drill with the hole saw and drill HALFWAY through the board. The pilot bit will peek through the other side of the board, like this:
Flip the board over and fit the pilot bit into the hole peeking through and finish drilling the hole from the other side. This is to ensure a neat cut with no messy tear-out.
Finish drilling all the holes, remembering to drill one board with the 1/2 in. corner holes and one board with 1/8″ corner holes. Cut the boards out. Sand the egg holes well. It’s helpful when sanding holes to wrap sandpaper around a dowel to get in all the curves.
Step 3: Attaching the center support and the ball feet
Get your dowel screws. Here’s a picture of the package. They’re a bit out of the way in the hardware store and you may need to ask someone who works there to help you find them.
Secure one end of the two-ended dowel screw into the locking pliers/vise grip and twist it in half way. You want an equal amount sticking out of both sides.
Put some wood glue on the bottom of the candlestick. Still holding the screw with the channel locks, twist the candlestick on to the screw until it seats onto the board.
Put the round dowel cap in a vise and drill another pilot hole in the flat side. Put a touch of wood glue on the flat surface and screw it onto the other end of the screw.
Cut 4 sections of 1/2″ doweling. I used 1 3/8″ sections. Your measurements may vary from this, so I recommend you add the total dimension of the hole in the candlestick, plus the thickness of the board, plus the depth of the recess in the acorn dowel cap. That will be the total length you need your dowel sections to be. Cut them out and dry fit them before you put your glue on and assemble it. When you’re sure of the fit, glue and insert the dowel piece into the recesses in the top of the candlesticks.
Step 4: Adding the top level and the finials
Glue and place the top board on top of the base, inserting the dowels through the 1/2″ holes in the top corners.
Glue and add the finials to the 4 corner dowels.
You can paint, stain, or wax it as soon as the glue is dry. If you want to distress it and make it look old, follow the steps below.
Paint the rack with primer and let it dry.
Beat the poor thing up. Use sandpaper, gouge-y things, blunt objects. In places where normal wear and tear are liable to damage things, go to work on it and create some superficial damage.
Get out your crazy project paint leftovers and go wild. Colors that look vintage are especially good. I used black, red, and a Mediterranean blue. After the crazy paint dries. take a bar of wax and hit some of the corners and high spots with the wax. This is to create a resist that will make parts of the topcoat rub off easily to expose some of the undercoat colors.
Finish with your topcoat. After it dries completely, take a rag and rub away where you waxed it to reveal peeks of color. Leave it like this, or finish with a light distressing glaze. Rub it into the distressing marks and crannies like persistent dirt that you can’t clean out. Wipe (almost) clean.
Enjoy your egg rack!