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25 February 2014

How to hang a Ukulele

It's been a while since I talked about ukuleles on this blog. Let's rectify this! Today, I'm going to ponder a couple of options for hanging your ukulele.

Hanging ukuleles doesn't have to be a nightmare. Hold this thought...

This weekend I paid a visit to London. On the way down I stopped off for a look around Stamford and discovered the Stamford Music shop. I'd recommend everyone pays a visit to Stamford... and the music shop. Here are a number of photos I took whilst no one was looking...

*** Update: Sorry, seem to have lost the album from Google+. You snooze, you lose...

You might have noticed this picture in the above album. It's of some hand-shaped wall hangers you can get for guitars. I've posted on something very much like this before, but I can't for the life of me find that original post to give you a link to it. I think my comments then were along the lines of "creepy". I still feel this way about these hangers.

If you are interested in this solution then I think you need to be checking out Guitar Grip are based in Detroit and have an extensive range of hand hangers to choose from.

This is a similar, more hard-core version of the dismembered hand guitar hanger by DeathGrips, available from Etsy

You should know me well enough by now to realise that given a choice, I'll often go down the home-made route. Here is a rough sketch I drew last year to illustrate a basic wall-hanger design I had in my head. I won't win any prizes for this: It's a plank of wood with some hooks in it. ;-)

The hooks could be shop-bought, like the ones pictured below. These actual hooks are currently available on Amazon at a knock-down price. Go build one!

As if by magic, I just found some instructions on how to make a ukulele rack on the UKEconomics site. Miles has posted some great instructions on how to make something that looks roughly like the design I mocked out above. His version is a lot neater and uses plastic coated tool hangers for hooks. Fantastic job Miles!

Check out this actual uke rack I built a number of years ago. It works, but you could hardly call it pretty. Ha ha. As you can see, it is also great for holding uke stands and kung fu action figures, as well as hanging monitors from bits of string. Oh yes... and you can also rest ukuleles on top of it if there's nowhere to place them in the actual rack itself.

I made this rack out of some left-over decking wood. It will still be standing long after this house has been reduced to rubble.

Here's another idea I toyed with for a uke hanger about a year ago. Wouldn't it be great if I could somehow incorporate some unique artwork with the uke? I pinched this wonderful artwork from the Japanese UkuleleAfternoon site to knock together this concept picture. I think that you'll agree... This has potential! It would be an actual 3D ukulele picture!

This video by ukateer Manitoba Hal shows you how to make another kind of ukulele hanger out of an old pallet. Actually, it's probably more accurately described as a ukulele shelf. Hal makes it look easy, but I know from bitter experience that they make pallets out of the hardest wood in the world. In fact, it may not even be wood at all, but some form of crazy ukulele kryptonite. I'm afraid that the video quality is terrible and I can't find a good picture of the hanger to share with you. I have found Hal's blog though! It's called "Hal Fixes It". It seems that ukulele hangers aren't Hal's only DIY vice! It doesn't look like Hal's fixed anything since 2011! Ha ha. Come on Hal, pull your finger out!!!

By the way, Hal will be appearing at the Melbourne Ukulele Festival in a month's time. The festival runs over the 7-9th of March 2014 and features about a million performers. I see that Lord Uke is a sponsor. I wonder if he is any relation to me? I wish I could go, but sadly no. If you do make it down then be sure to check out Ukulele Russ who will be making his international festival debut. It's gonna be a rip-snorter!

Finally, here's a hanger of a slightly different variety that comes from a new ukulele blog called UK Ukee. It's called the Uke Sling and you can make it yourself... but not yet. Instructions are to follow soon. ;-)

Okay... one more...

I love this picture from the failed Woodhook Kickstarter project that hoped to get these wooden instrument hooks into production. The idea of instruments hung outside had never occurred to me before seeing this. Those crazy Kiwis! Have I ever told you how much I love New Zealand?

Check out the video for some laid-back banjo plucking. Do it! A little bit of searching has uncovered that it is played by David Ward. You can hear more of his work on MySpace. Some great stuff. Go check it out!


  1. With all of those, I would want to check the composition of materials - some foams and padding can corrode and damage finishes - particularly vintage and new luthier built finishes on ukes. Keep mine in cases personally!

  2. Good points Barry.

    "Keep mine in cases personally!"

    I reckon for a lot of people it's "out of sight, out of mind" - they're going to hang their instrument on the wall so that they can admire it, get to it easily, and basically be reminded that they have it. I have some stuff in cases, some stuff on the wall. The valuable ones don't go on the wall ;-) But then, they never get played either. What a waste!

    "I would want to check the composition of materials"

    I haven't had this problem, but I hear what you're saying. My only experience of this has been with instruments that haven't been finished properly. If a uke isn't good enough to withstand being hung, then it most likely won't be good enough to withstand being played over an extensive time either. A sweaty hand is always going to be a lot more corrosive than a hanger.

    As with everything... I reckon you've just got to keep an open mind and experiment.

    Thanks for commenting Barry.

    Oh yeah... I almost forgot another big reason for hanging stuff on the wall... When the floor is too full of cases ;-)

  3. There will be no need to worry about any of that stuff once you have made your very own Uke Sling. I'll keep you posted as to when the instructions are coming out. Thanks for the mention King Uke. Keep it Ukee!

  4. Ha ha... Yes! Slings are the future... This much I am sure of!

  5. The future is now! The Uke Sling is out there!

  6. Just read this and think it should get a mention here. Another great reason to hang your uke!

    "Thinking back as a kid. I would visit my Grandpa who was a champion fiddle player in Clay, West Virginia. He would have all his violins and fiddles up on the wall. I asked him why he didn't put them in their cases,. He would tell me the urban legend that the instruments would fall asleep if left in their cases. If the instruments are left out by the radio or television or just around singing laughter or voices the pours of the wood would wake up."

  7. What a lovely legend! I'm going to make a wall hanger for my ukulele right away and hang it on the wall next to the piano.

  8. Thanks for the ideas. I am new to playing a ukulele so it gets played numerous times each day and is never away. I have the wood, now the hanging method is mine to consider.

    1. Be sure to share a picture of what you end up with ;-)