Sunday, March 14, 2021

Design Toolbox: Get the Hook!

My wife recently asked me to place a hook in our back hall so she could hang up a special mop that picks up dog hair from our hardwood and tile floors.

While there were a number of hooks I could have chosen from my workshop, I enjoyed picking out the rubbery dog tail wall hook shown at the top of this post. Why? Well a combination of function and whimsy, I suppose -- combined with a visual cue that tells you something about the tool hanging there.

Anyway, this household chore, and my recent post about different types of tape, made me want to delve into a visual exploration of different types and styles of hooks -- mainly wall hooks. Since hooks often show up in both the public spaces inside museums (think coat rooms) and museum exhibition areas (hanging tools in Maker Spaces or smocks inside water exhibitions, for example) I thought I'd share some hooks I particularly like to provide some museum/exhibit/design inspiration.

The name of each hook below is a clickable link that brings you to a place where you can purchase each particular item -- along with a picture and brief description.  

The classic IKEA "dog tail" wall hook. Funny, relatively cheap, and functional.  Who could also ask for more?  (Also available from Amazon**)

Continuing with the animal theme, these sparrow-shaped hooks would be a great addition to a Nature Center or Natural History museum.

Toughooks are affordable unbreakable plastic backpack and coat hooks. The manufacturer is so sure you can't break them, that they guarantee these hooks for life.

The Shelfology website shows some elegant (if a little pricy) hooks.  I especially like the powder-coated steel Popsicle wall hook (pictured below) which comes in about 30 different colors, as well as the Doohooky wall hook.

3M Command™ Hooks

There are many types of 3M Command™ hooks and they are all designed to hold strongly on a variety of indoor surfaces, but leave no sticky adhesive behind.

Another inexpensive, minimalist winner from IKEA.  Simple, but does the job.

I love this clever design where each black "key" on the piano keyboard can flip down to form a hook.

Another minimalist design.  Sometimes you just need a simple stainless steel screw-in hook at a great price, and this is it.

When a design project has you climbing the walls, you might want to specify these whimsical wall hooks -- especially for a Children's Museum or other child-centered project.

Thanks for hanging in through this whole post!  I hope some of these items hooked you enough to provide you inspiration for future projects.  Have some other favorite hook suggestions to share?  Tell us about them in the "COMMENTS" section below!

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Paul Orselli writes the posts on ExhibiTricks. Paul likes to combine interesting people, ideas, and materials to make exhibits (and entire museums!) with his company POW! (Paul Orselli Workshop, Inc.) Let's work on a project together!

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(** PLEASE NOTE: Some Amazon links may provide the author a small commission with no additional costs for the purchaser.)