Simple DIY Shelves (AKA The Project That Cost Me 3x More and a New Windshield…)
How is that title for a spoiler alert? Every once in a while you get a project that seems so easy. But is like the Pandora’s box of swear words and frustration. Yes. This is one of those projects. Good news? I have had enough trial and error for the both of us.
I am pretty in love with these simple shelves in Macie’s Bedroom. They are not hard to install, no tools required other than a drill.
Here are the supplies that you will need:
Shelving Brackets (I used these 12×8 ones from Home Depot)
Wood (I used 2×10’s)
Hex Screws (the kind with the point on the end) (2 per bracket for your studs):
Hex Bolts (the kind with the flat end) (2 per bracket for your shelves)
Cap Nuts (2 per bracket for your shelves)
We are using bolts and caps to hold the shelves on because we are mounting the brackets upside down. I would hate to use a screw and then have it strip because of the weight on the shelves. This is the safe way to do it.
Before we get started on the tutorial, let me tell you our fun little experience so you know what NOT to do. Arent you glad that you can learn from my mistakes?
When we were working on Macie’s room we were under a crazy fast deadline, so the thought process was under stress.
That is the only excuse I can come up with…
I measured the wall that the shelves would be living on and decided that I wanted them to be 30” wide. I was so pumped about this little project, I jumped into my car and headed to Home Depot. I bought the brackets, the screws and the wood. While I was there I had them cut the board into 30” pieces. You guys, I was smiling the ENTIRE time. I just kept thinking about your adorable faces and how much you were going to love this simple inexpensive project.
When I got home we realized that I hadnt figured out where the studs were on the wall. They were spaced 33” apart *palm to forehead. Fail #1.
So I went back to Home Depot and had them recut a piece into 35” sections. Got home, and it BARELY fit on the brackets. I hadnt factored anything in for an over hang. Such an idiot. Fail #2.
At this point my adorable and patient husband was not amused. So he decided to take matters into his own hands. He went to HD and bought a piece of wood and decided to cut it at home. That way we could measure 970 times before we cut it. Great idea in theory. He used my 16 yr old sister in law’s truck to pick it up. The board was 10 feet long, so to avoid a really large overhang he opened the sliding back window, and had the board resting on the tailgate and on the window seal while he got into the truck. Once inside he reached over and pulled the board forward so that more of it was inside the cab (can you see where this is going?) This caused the other end to fall off of the tail gate, and like a teeter totter from Lucifer, it made the end inside the cab pop up and crack the windshield.
Imagine his delight.
The good news is that we were able to get the shelves done. The bad news….well, you know…everything else.
Now that you know what not to do, lets go over the right way to do this.
Start by finding and marking your studs.
Decide on the width of your shelves (make sure to factor in the overhang!)
Attach your brackets to the wall. While you are doing this remember to add the thickness of your shelf + the amount of gapping that you need to get the shelf height that you want. Use a level. Eyeballing is not your friend.
When you are using such large screws, always drill a pilot hole so that you dont split your stud.
Once your brackets are in place, center the wood underneath. Mark the holes that need to be drilled. Drill it with a bit that is the same size as your bolt.
Then using your bolts and cap nuts, attach them to the brackets.
Also it helps if you put a fern on them to get the full effect.
Think of all of the fun places that you can hang them! I might have another suggestion in Friday’s room reveal. Just sayin.
Before you go on your way for the day, I have one favor to ask. My Creating With The Stars partners Classy Clutter, are in FINALS!! Today is the last day to vote and it is SO close. I cant tell you which one is theirs, but I can tell you that it is very amazing. So please pop over and vote for your favorite, they have worked extremely hard (as have all of the contestants) and deserve to win!!