Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Cork Ladders: The Hot Plate with Style

Cork Ladder Hot PlateDo people still call these things trivets? Hot plates? Hot pads? I came across a designer who makes these brilliant thingies labeled as "Cork Ladders" and I've got to say that's the best name yet.

Hetta, a Swedish company, takes lengths of cork and strings them together alternately with beads to create these long, beautiful, functional treats for the table and the minute I saw them I said "Wow!" Followed by "I can do that!"

So instead of doing the easy thing and just buying one for myself I spent much more time than sanity permits to track down the supplies and put my own cork ladder together.

Cork Ladder Hot PlateFirst off, I could not find cork strips. Cork sheets, cork tiles, corks for bottles but no lengths of cork either in the stores here in Anchorage or on the internet which meant that I was forced to go to Plan B.

I instead bought 1-inch by 1-inch balsa wood strips--much more readily available--at the craft store and cut them into eight-inch lengths. I figured that though regular craft wood was less expensive the balsa wood would be less abrasive on your table surface.

Then I drilled a hole through the middle of each piece of balsa and strung it along some jewelry wire with some pretty wooden beads and tied it off at each end. Perfect for potlucks or the family dining table.

If you don't have a power drill the balsa is soft enough you tap a hole through with an awl or even a hammer and nail. I'm hoping that the wood holds up well under the heat of the pans and the stress of use, I've only been using it a short time so I'll have to let you know about that later when the evidence is in.

Though it sure looks pretty.

I'll stick one in my Etsy shop if the whole hunting-down-supplies-to-make-it-yourself thing just isn't on the menu for this week. I understand, it wouldn't be on my menu this week either.

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Congratulations to Ren of Orlando, Florida and another nameless entrant who has not yet responded to claim his/her prize (check the emails--was it you?) for winning the two t-shirts from PeaceLoveMom.com in the last giveaway. I'm wearing my shirt right now--and if I don't get a response today I'll draw another name--so cross those fingers again!

Sponsored by Sweet Retreat Kids--for fun kids decor. Fun spaces are memorable places.

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28 comments:

Wild Squirrel said...

A perfect gift for someone who already has everything! I'm feeling the craftiness coming on...Thanks for the idea!

One Mom said...

Oh that would be ever so much nicer than the folded dish towel techinique I now use :) I once saw a "trivit" using recycled wine corks glued inside a frame...I saved lots of corks but never got around to making the trivit....now where did I put those corks????

SarahHub said...

Much more classy looking than a potholder on the table!

Ashley said...

Can you use those little cork board tiles you get to tack up notes in offices or dorm rooms? You know, the unframed "cork tiles" over in the office section, I think they come in packs of 4? Or are those too thin, or wrong type of cork?

Doll Clothes Gal said...

What a fabulous idea - they look great and can be stored so easily.

Scribbit said...

The cork tiles seemed to be pretty thin--which might not keep the heat from the table as well and also might not hold up under use as well. I've seen creative things done with corks--as in bottle corks--someone should go design something with those.

Debbie said...

This is a great idea. If I can channel my Martha, I may get on this for Christmas gifts. Thanks.

Maddy said...

I really like that one. I feel a trip to home depot coming on!
Cheers

Shannon said...

This is something I could duplicate, and I'm with onemom in that I use a folded dishtowel too ( : So, I could probably use one!

Will the balsa become discolored with heat, or does it maintain it's integrity well?

Munchkins and Music said...

That would look great on a fancy table!

Janet said...

THat's a VERY cool project. The Mountain man did One Mom's idea about just gluing a bunch of corks together for a hot pad. It wasn't inside a frame - it's just a random shape. But it's pretty cool and it works well.

Killlashandra said...

Neat idea for trivets. Seems like it would take way less time than crocheting them does. ;) Not that I can crochet but my Mother sure did a bunch this way.

I like the curve in the trivet, makes it seem a lot more stylish.

ames said...

That's so cool! I *thought* it looked like balsa, before I got to that part I was like "Where's the cork?"

Balsa is so fun, I always want to pinch it.

Sucharita Sarkar said...

This sure looks way prettier than the functional round steel contraptions we use over here for hot pots and other stuff.But are they easy to clean, like you know between the steps of the ladders in case of spills?

Sucharita Sarkar said...

This sure looks way prettier than the functional round steel contraptions we use over here for hot pots and other stuff.But are they easy to clean, like you know between the steps of the ladders in case of spills?

thecottonwife said...

Whoa- that's really cool! I love it.

I too use the "folded dish towel" technique but this is much more stylish and efficient... well, as long as I don't make them myself! :)

Cant Hardly Wait said...

What an excellent idea. I would do it, but I am one of those women who use dish rags because I am too lazy. They are really pretty and unique, though!

Motherhood for Dummies said...

that is too cool. I love it!

lifemoreabundant said...

Uh oh, I just thought "hey, I could do that."

Yet another craft idea. Like I have so much free time that I need to fill. :-)

SabineM said...

Loved your post about the privacy issue! Something I have thought about often!!!
I came to say that I have given you an award!! ;-))

~TAMY 3 Sides of Crazy~ said...

These are awesome!! What a great idea!

Jolanthe said...

I'm guessing that making it with the wood would be actually easier than using cork (just in case the cork started falling apart - does that make sense?).

What a great idea!!

Sacramento said...

It's really cool.

Owlhaven said...

Love this!!

Mary, mom to many

Heffalump said...

I noticed today that craft magazine posted your trivet picture and a little blurb about it from their Flickr pool, so you got double the exposure on this idea! Cool...

Christy said...

What a great idea!! You did such a nice job, too. I'm going to give this a try and finally get rid of all the trivets that take up so much room in my drawer.

A Rose said...

What about cutting up these cork trivets from Ikea?

Layne said...

Great idea! Thanks so much for the tip.