Chalk Painted Kitchen Dishtowel Rack

How to paint with chalk paint to makeover a bare wood plaque into a dishtowel rack to match your kitchen decorating color scheme.


When you live in a rental – no holes can be made in the walls. Or you simply do not want to damage a wall or in this case, a wood kitchen cabinet. Now there is no need to make hole…  To the rescue – Command Brand Damage Free Hanging products which require cleaning the wall surface first with the alcohol.


When Command Brand asked me to create a few projects for them, I knew that my daughter could use a decorative towel rack in her kitchen.

She has a turquoise  scheme going. You may remember the post I wrote about painting an old dresser and table and chairs for her. I used the color to create a one-of-a-kind chalk painted towel rack that could be hung on her kitchen wall using her stash of the Damage-Free Hanging strips.


supplies needed:

  • Decorative pine board
  • 3 decorative molding accent pieces
  • Chalk paint (in your choice of color)
  • Clear paste wax
  • Dark paste wax
  • Soft cloth
  • Small bristle paintbrush
  • Wood glue
  • Sandpaper
  • Paintbrush
  • Isopropyl rubbing alcohol
  • Command™ Brand Medium and Large Picture Hanging Strips
  • Command™ Brand Terrace Hooks

Helpful Tip:

To make sure you are getting all the nooks and crannies when painting wicker – use spray paint and spray it on when the the piece is – upside down, right side up, and sideways.  This will ensure complete coverage.

Kitchen Beadboard Cabinets

1. Select a space in your kitchen for a decorative dishtowel rack, such as on the kitchen island or the side of counter.

Towel-Rack-with-wood medallions

2. Use wood glue to attach decorative molding pieces to a pine board, and let dry. Be sure to leave enough space in between each piece to adhere a Command™ Brand Terrace Hook.

Chalk Paint ideas

3. Paint the board with two coats of chalk paint. Let the first coat dry thoroughly before applying the second coat.

chalk paint and dark wax techniques

4. When the board is completely dry, rub sandpaper over all the edges of the board and molding pieces to create a distressed look.

How to wax over chalk paint

5. Apply a coat of clear wax, and rub it into the surface of the painted board. Let dry for about 15 minutes, then buff with soft cloth.

Chalk paint wax tips

Use a small paintbrush to remove wax from the detailed parts in the decorative accent molding pieces. Note: Do not apply wax where hooks will be placed as this can affect adhesion.

6. Repeat the process with the dark wax to give the board an aged, worn look—also known as “patina.” Note: Do not apply wax where hooks will be placed as this can affect adhesion.

Command Brand Terrace hooks in White

7. Attach the Command™ Brand Terrace Hooks to the front of the board. First clean the area in between the decorative accent molding pieces with isopropyl rubbing alcohol, wipe gently and let dry.

Command Brand Terrace Hook Adhesive Strips

8. Then remove the red liner from the adhesive strip and press to the Command™ Brand Terrace Hook firmly. Remove the black liner from the adhesive strip and press the hook to the board for 30 seconds. For maximum holding strength, slide the hook up and off the board and press the base to the board firmly for 30 seconds.

How to make a towel rack

9. Repeat for the additional hooks. Slide the hooks back on their bases and wait one hour before hanging dishtowels.

Command-Brand Damage Free Hanging Strips

10. Adhere two sets of Command™ Brand Picture Hanging Strips to the back of the board to hang the piece to the wall or cabinet.

Command Brand picture-hanging-strips

To make a set, place two strips together until you hear them snap. Remove one green liner from the Command™ Brand Picture Hanging Strips and attach to the back of the board. Remove the other green liner and press the board into place on the wall or cabinet for 30 seconds.

Note: 2 medium sets of Picture Hanging Strips can hold 6 lbs. 2 large sets can hold 8 lbs. Ensure that the weight of your board and the items hanging on it do not exceed the maximum weight for your strips.

Command Brand Picture Hanging Strips -Towel-Rack-Picture-Hanging-Hook

11. Remove the board by slowly pulling it from the bottom and towards you. Wait one hour to re-mount, pressing the fasteners together until they click.

DIY Chalk Paint Kitchen Towel Rack

Hang your dishtowels.  I looked for colorful towels to coordinate with the turquoise rack. You can also make your own embellished towels to match your style.


To give them a style of their own, I simply sewed a few pieces of ribbon along the bottom edge.


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  1. Diane, I see you rubbed wax on it, what does that do?

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Sue – the paste was protects the paint and brings out the patina. Chalk paint has a flat finish, the wax adds shine when you buff it. If you add colored wax like an antique wax that is dark brown or black it brings out the patina of the wood and paint. It makes the piece look beautifully finished.

  2. I like the idea and since I live in a rental I have to pay per hole so I do not put anything up on the walls. Thank you for the ideas.

  3. Hi, Diane,

    Love your cute little project…and the green and blue colors look so perfect together. I just wanted to mention that I have painted the Command strips before and it works really well! On my front door I spray painted the hook and on our back door I just brushed some of the same paint color as the door. Both the paint and hooks have held up great.

    Thanks for your always interesting posts!



    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Barbara – Thanks for the tip on painting the hooks. I was thinking of experimenting with painting them, so the color would blend in. Thanks for taking the time to share that they take paint well. :)

  4. Sheryll & Critters. says:

    That is the greatest towel rack I have ever seen. I knew as soon as I saw the picture in my email that you had added your gorgeous ribbons to the towels. I guess it is a good thing I don’t spot all those great fabrics, ribbons and paper like you do, cause I really would be broke all the time. You certainly find the most gorgeous stuff and always know how to put it all together. I hope to get some of those Command Strips very soon. You have sold me on them for sure. Cause some day I am going to get everything to make a gallery wall of mirrors like you did in your guest bedroom.

  5. Love this Diane, we don’t have wood mouldings so readily available in Australia. Could you tell me where you purchased them from or maybe give me a link. Many thanks. Suzanne

  6. That has got to be the nicest towel hanger for the kitchen I’ve ever seen!! I love it, it’s gorgeous! And I love the Command hangers, too…ingenious…
    Debbie :)

  7. Looks great! The way chalk paint sticks to most anything, I wonder if you could paint the two white hooks on front with the turquoise paint or with a contrasting color like lime green?

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi MK – The thought had crossed my mind, but since the post was to show the hooks as they come, I left them alone. They do come in 3 colors – white, grey and slate. You know me – I will be testing how they take paint in a post soon. I love experimenting on surfaces and making something truly my own. :)

  8. I love this simple towel rack! I’m sure your daughter loved receiving this, too! I loved the gorgeous colors you chose!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Katie -The turquoise color has been popping up in a lot of my projects lately. It goes nice with all the pink accents I have around my house. My daughter likes it since it is a bold color. I mixed two colors from previous projects together to get the shade for the towel rack.

  9. Yvonne @ StoneGable says:

    What a fun project… love the color and anything command brand! LOTS of things around here are held up by those wonderful hooks!
    You daughter must love the bright and happy place to hang dish towels. You belong to the good mom club!!!!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Yvonne – My daughter loves it. I recently gave her a few of the turquoise canning jars I received a few weeks ago, too. She loves color. Her room growing up was orange and bright green :) Since both my daughter’s are out living on their own, I am always thinking up ways to help them make their space their own. Wish they lived a bit closer so I could actually do some of the work right in their apartments and take the photos to use on my blog :)

  10. I love your talent, to turn anything plain into a great colorful design. I adore this and can’t wait to try. Did you add the ribbon to the dishtowels?

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Natalie – I did add the ribbon to the dishtowels. Found a few scraps I had and sewed them on to the bottom of the towels.

  11. Krista @thehappyhousie says:

    So cute! I love it… and such a fabulous color.