If you are like most of us, you will probably not put a huge amount of thought into buying a coat rack or umbrella stand. That can turn out to be one of those small mistakes that have consequences that irk you for years to come. So take a seat, sit back and read through the tips below and you should be able to make a much better decision.
How Much Storage Capacity Does Your Coat Rack Or Umbrella Stand Need?
The storage capacity of the coat rack or umbrella stand will not only determine how many coats or umbrellas it can accommodate, but generally speaking also the amount of space it will occupy. There is a bit of a trade-off here: if you live in a small apartment you might not have space for much more than a small wall mounted coat rack.
A spacious entryway, on the other hand, will allow for a beautiful wooden combination coat rack hanger with an integrated umbrella stand that not only has a much bigger storage capacity but is also a lovely piece of furniture - quite suitable to become a family heirloom.
When should I buy a multi-hook coat rack?
If space is limited, yet you have kids in the house so you need decent capacity, consider buying a wall-mounted coat rack with multi-hooks. One with five tri-hooks e.g. will actually provide you with 15 hooks, which should be enough to accommodate the needs of most families.
Is a modular coat rack a good idea?
A modular coat rack is a great idea because it is scalable to your needs. These racks come with interlocking sections that can be added to increase capacity when the need arises. All you have to do is to simply add another modular section and voila! you will have more hanging space.
What about a multi-function coat rack?
A great way to increase capacity without necessarily paying a lot more (or taking up an exorbitant amount of space) is to buy a coat rack with an integrated umbrella stand and maybe even storage space for hats.
Are all coat racks and umbrella stands equally durable?
When thinking durability you have quite a few options, including: all-metal, aluminum, plastic and wood.
- Aluminum coat racks are known for being lightweight yet sturdy and durable.
- Stainless steel coat racks offer an even longer lifespan than aluminum.
- Wooden coat racks, provided they are made from solid wood, can provide a similar level of durability with (depending on your tastes of course) an added aesthetic appeal that other products find hard to duplicate.
- Plastic coat racks come in all sorts of funky colors and provide a decent lifespan at a reasonable cost. If durability is your primary concern, however, these should probably not be your first choice. The children might love the funky colors though.
How important is aesthetic appeal when you buy a coat rack or umbrella stand?
We know we are on dangerous ground here. Beauty is, after all, in the eye of the beholder. But that does not mean you can’t use both sides of your brain when choosing a coat rack or umbrella stand.
OK, the rack/stand should be functional and durable, but you also don’t want it to be so ugly that it scares away potential buyers one day when you’re trying to sell your house. Taking into account the following factors could help in this regard:
Consider your target audience. If you are a well-established couple at the peak of your careers, preferably in finance, a rainbow-coloured plastic coat/umbrella stand might satisfy the accountant in you with its relatively low cost, but your friends might think you have financial problems, or even worse that you are very stingy.
If you are a young fashion designer and your friends are all hip young yuppies from the fashion world, however, that same stand could become a conversation piece - particularly if you stick some images of endangered species on it.
For some people real wood will always have a timeless aesthetic appeal. There’s a reason why wooden pieces often become family heirlooms. But if you are heavily into saving the rainforests of Brazil, that might not work for you.
To some people a beautifully polished aluminium coat rack or stand signals trendy and modern, to others it says artificial and cheap.
What we’re trying to say here is this: buy something you find beautiful, and that you hope your friends will find beautiful too. Not only today, but ten years down the line.
What are the main factors affecting the stability of a coat rack or umbrella stand?
There’s little more embarrassing than when the boss comes for supper and your coat stand tumbles to the floor the moment he tries to hang his rather bulky coat on it. Remember these factors before buying:
The base: The heavier and bigger the base, the more stable the coat stand will be. A coat stand with an integrated umbrella stand at the bottom will be more stable than one without it to begin with.
The design and material: While a stand with a single leg will definitely need some form of solid base to prevent it from easily tipping over, a multi-legged stand is inherently more stable. A heavier material is also less likely to tip over than something very light.
What other factors should I consider before buying a coat rack or umbrella stand?
There’s an old saying that says: ‘The devil is in the detail.’ Before you make the final buying choice, put away your credit card, sit down and consider the other practicalities you might have forgotten about. Things like:
The size and shape of the hooks
If you or someone you know will visit you often have a particularly heavy winter coat, a coat stand with hooks that have ball ends will ensure that there’s no chance of anything tearing. If you have kids in the family, different hook sizes is also a great idea, because why use a massive hook for a toddler’s jacket?
You get coat stands, coat racks and umbrella stands of many different designs and shapes. This normally is a matter of personal choice and does not impact on the usefulness of the stand. Do take into account, however, that a stand shaped like a beautiful pear tree will take up more space than one with a single straight leg.
The curse of the origin
When you buy a $10 coat rack from a flea market you shouldn’t expect it to last a lifetime. If you want something that your grandchildren will be proud of, look for a reputable retailer or manufacturer with a proven track history.
By now you will realize that buying a coat rack or umbrella stand is a very personal decision, similar to buying a coat or an umbrella. It’s not just about its usefulness, it’s also about what it says about you and your home.