In Shop Blog, Techniques

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French Cleat Wine RackYou may already know about the French cleat, but if you haven’t heard of it, this neat trick is a great simple way to hang cabinets, wall racks or shelving. In this excerpt below, Popular Woodworking’s very own David Thiel explains how he used this simple yet effective method of wall-mounting to hang a wine rack  – a project that is featured in the new book “Simple & Stylish Woodworking: 20 Projects for Your Home.”

I used a hidden French cleat to hang a dovetailed wine rack that I created. This is so simple I’m surprised it doesn’t get used more often. The cleat is made by cutting a 5″-wide piece of 3⁄4″ plywood to fit between the two box sides. Then simply set your table saw blade to a 45° angle and rip the piece in half lengthwise.

French Cleat

By attaching the top half of the cleat (widest-width facing out) to the case and the lower half to your wall (use drywall anchors if that’s not possible) you simply can slide the case down onto the wall cleat using the 45° angle and lock it tightly in place. The photo above shows the two parts of the cleat pulled away from the recessed back of the box.

French cleat diagram

This diagram shows how the two parts of the French cleat are attached to the case and to the wall respectively.

Simple & Stylish WoodworkingFor more woodworking ideas that look great in your home – as well as fun projects that allow you to try out new techniques and put your stash of precious offcuts to good use, check out “Simple & Stylish Woodworking: 20 Projects for Your Home,” available now at



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