Love where you live. Sign up for our newsletter

Make It! An Eames-Inspired Trellis

by on Jun 1, 2011

Okay my fellow Curblians, today we embark on a month-long how-to extravaganza of the outdoor decor variety! First up is my original design for an Eames-inspired trellis. It’s super easy to make, which means you don’t have to be an experienced carpenter to get fantastic results. So, without further ado….let’s get started!



  • 5 – 4′ long 3/4″ wood doweling
  • 1′ long 3/16″ doweling
  • 1 – 6′ long 1″ x 2″ select pine
  • 10 – wooden knobs/dolls heads with a 3/16″ hole at the bottom that are 1-1/4″ in diameter (I found mine at my local craft store)
  • saw (hand, miter…whatever you have on hand will do)
  • drill
  • 3/4″ and 3/16″ drill bits
  • hammer
  • 20 – 1″ brad nails
  • tape measure
  • sand paper – 120 grit OR an electric sander
  • pencil
  • water-proof glue
  • latex primer
  • white exterior paint
  • weather resistant acrylic gloss in red, pink, black, yellow and navy blue (I used craft acrylic gloss craft paint found at the craft store)
  • paint brush(es) etc.


Step 1: Cut the 3/4″ doweling into the following lengths:

  • 4 at 24″ long
  • 2 at 36″ long
  • 1 at 48″ long

Step 2: Cut the 1″ x 2″ select pine into four 18″ long pieces. (These will be the horizontals of your trellis.)

created at: 06/01/2011

Step 3: Drill five 3/4″ holes four inches apart, equally spaced along the 2″ side of EACH 18″ piece you just cut and sanded.

created at: 06/01/2011

Step 4: Round-over the 1″ ends with sand paper or electric sander. 

created at: 06/01/2011

Step 5: Prime the trellis and wooden knobs; then paint the trellis with the white exterior paint and the knobs with the acrylic gloss. (3 red, 3 blue, 2 pink, 2 yellow and 2 black)

Step 6: Slip the 3/4″ doweling into the holes you drilled in the last step. (You can refer to the final picture to estimate spacing. No need to get all OCD here; just make them even.)

created at: 06/01/2011

….And then nail each into place using the 1″ brads.

created at: 06/01/2011

Step 7: Mark the centers of the dowels and drill a 3/16″ hole into the marked spots 1/2″ deep. NOTE: Do not drill holes in the bottom two dowels as they will be touching the ground. 

created at: 06/01/2011

created at: 06/01/2011

Step 8: Cut the 3/16″ dowel into 10 – 1 inch pieces. Apply water-proof glue to one end of each and insert into each knob.

created at: 06/01/2011

Step 9: When completely dry, apply glue to the dowels protruding from each knob and insert into the holes drilled into the ends of the verticals. 

created at: 06/01/2011

And there you have it. An Eames-inspired trellis just waiting to be climbed upon!

Any questions, just post to comments and I’ll do my best to help you through.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *