Shelf-Top Ironing Board from Maxwell Ryan of Apartment Therapy

Not much room in your laundry room? This DIY lets you ditch your bulky ironing board and replaces it with a space-saving, shelf-top solution. So grab a staple gun and some heat-resistant batting and let’s get started!

Materials & Tools

  • Storage furniture - should be around 36”-46” height, depending on how tall you are; must have flat top with overhang; best if you can remove top.
  • Heat-resistant batting
  • Fabric (cotton duck or canvas is recommended; also denim or tightly-woven, tighter cottons or linens)
  • Bleach pen
  • Staple Gun


  1. Use the bleach pen to create your own clever designs on your fabric. Use scraps to get the hang of your pen and to see how long you’ll want to let the bleach dry before you wash it.
  2. After letting the bleach sit for a while (ours took about 30 minutes to get nice and white), launder your fabric. This is a very important step - do NOT iron on unwashed bleach.
  3. Cover your shelf top with several layers of heat-resistant batting. For a little extra protection, you can add a layer of aluminum foil.
  4. Cover the batting with your designed and washed fabric, trim excess around the edges, and then simply staple it to your shelf top.

Tips for inspiration: You can use different colors of cotton, denim or canvas. Or use fabric paint instead of bleach. Try simple dots or designs, or choose your own mantra (like “Waste not, Want not”) to write on the fabric.

For a little Home-Grown. Inspiration, start shopping now.