I feel like I’ve been on a random decorating tear through my house these past few weeks. There’s no rhyme or reason to how I’m prioritizing projects at all, and that’s probably how this one came to be.
There’s this weird little nook between the hall and the powder room on the main floor. Considering that our house is only half-decorated at this point, this funny little nook really shouldn’t have even hit my radar. But it did.
As I’ve mentioned in our Favorites section, Vintage Revivals is currently my favorite DIY blog. A while ago, Mandi (of VR) had done some really chunky wood shelves that I loved and had stored away in my memory. Unfortunately, her shelves weren’t installed in a nook, and so my installation required some customization. Here’s how I did it.
My instructions are for a single shelf. Obviously, multiply your supplies by the number of shelves you plan to build. They are ridiculously economical … I bet I built all three shelves for less than ten or twelve bucks.
Here are the materials I used (the measurements are specific to the nook I was working with … measure your wall and calculate what you’ll need)
1 1″x4″x6′ (or longer if 6′ unavailable) – for front of shelf
1 1″x3″x6′ (or longer if 6′ unavailable) – for support sides
1 2’x4’x1/4″ luon/ plywood – for top and bottom of shelf
My shelves were exactly two feet wide, so I cut a 2-foot piece off of the 1″x4″. I measured the depth of my nook (14″) and subtracted off about an inch to account for the depth of the front piece. I cut two 13″ pieces off of the 1X3. I used a table saw to cut 2 13″x24″ pieces out of my plywood (you can use another type of saw, I just find the table saw to be easiest for this type of cut….better yet, get it cut at your hardware store!).
I decided to stain my pieces (well, the pieces that would show) before installing as I didn’t want to risk getting stain all over my white walls. I rigged up my trusty laser level on some cookbooks and a ladder and waited for the stain to dry.
Once the stain was dry, I used the laser and attached the two 13″ side pieces to the wall studs with a couple of screws.
I then attached the plywood pieces on the top bottom of the support pieces. It was at this point that I realized that our walls weren’t quite square. Using this shaving tool, I pared down the shelf until it fit. I used my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE TOOL, my pneumatic (air compressor) nail gun to attach the plywood shelf to the support pieces. Seriously … this tool is probably my best purchase ever. No, you don’t have to have one to do this project …. just use an old fashioned hammer and nails. BUT it does make the project so much easier and well worth it if you plan on doing panelling, moulding, etc.
Finally, I attached the front (1×4) piece (using the nail gun). The top of the shelf was slightly inset, but I liked that look. I filled the tiny nail holes with wood putty and dabbed on some stain to blend.
I ended up doing three shelves, which filled the space nicely.