INDIANAPOLIS – It’s something most people use almost every day, a remote control (or several).  Trying to find them isn’t always easy, and several of them thrown on the coffee table or couch can be messy.  You can buy remote control holders — or you can make one specific to your needs.

Envision your board

First, lay out the remotes just how you’d like to see them spaced out on a remote holder.  Then measure the dimensions. 

Scott measures

For example if the dimensions are 10 inches by 12 inches, you’ll want to cut a frame that’s a little bit bigger than that.  This doesn’t have to be exact.  For simplicity, let’s cut the frame to 11 inches by 13 inches.  My frame was made out of 1” x 3” poplar.  Piece those four boards together for the frame with nails or screws. You can do a little sanding here to the frame if you want to round off the corners or get rid of any imperfections.

Cut it out

Now it’s time to cut the board that goes inside the frame.  The remotes will sit on that board.  The board will also eventually be covered by a soft fabric.  Remeasure the interior of the frame that you just made and cut the board dimensions ¼ of an inch smaller on the length and width. That means if the interior of the frame is for example, 10 by 12, you would cut the board to 9 ¼ by 11 ¼.  You want the board to fit inside, but not have too much of a gap.

After the remote board was cut, I made sure it fit.  If you’re not quite sure, always cut the board a little big and trim the edges until you like it.

Place Dowels

Now put the remotes back on the board as you had planned.  They will be separated by dowels to give each remote its own happy little compartment.  Mark where you want the dowels, top and bottom so they are straight.  I cut those dowels about two inches shorter than the board and angled their ends so the fabric will slope off it better.  Now place the dowels back on the board where you marked and nail them on with a brad nailer as they are small. 

I wanted the board sitting up in the frame, not down at the bottom, so you’ll need to cut pieces of wood or cleats for the interior of the frame.  I attached the top cleat about an inch down and the bottom side was about two inches down.  That way the board would rest at an angle.  You can do it however you want.  

When attaching the cleats, pre-drill holes so the little piece of wood doesn’t split.  Use screws versus nails so you can reposition the cleats if you didn’t like how the board sits in the frame.  It’s a good thing I used screws because I had to reposition the board twice until I was happy with the angle.

Fun with Fabric

Now it’s fun with fabric time.  Cut a piece you like that’s maybe six inches bigger than the board on all sides.  The point is you want extra to wrap around the back.  Then spray the board with glue, lay the fabric on top.  Work from one side to the other, so it doesn’t pucker.

Scott’s “Fun with Fabric”

Press the fabric onto the board and the dowels.  Once you are done, let it dry, and then gently wrap and fold the extra fabric around the back of the board and staple it.  Nobody will see this part.

For a finished look, stain the frame.  I used poly and stain in one. After it fully dries, put the fabric covered board back in the frame.   The thickness of that fabric makes it now nice and snug.  That’s where the ¼ difference between the board and frame comes in.  Put your remotes on it, and you’re done. 

The end result!