Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Homemade Wall Shelf

We have an awkward sized wall in our dining area, and for the five and half years we have lived here, I have not been crazy about what's been on it. I've tried out a few different things, but it always seems to look too cluttered or too bare. I've wanted a simple shelf along that wall, hanging high enough so heads don't hit it, but low enough to be able to display things. But as my problem always is, our studs don't ever line up to anything I like, AND everything I find is either too expensive or just not the right size.

So what did I do? I decided to make something of course. All I did was get a 1x8 pine board and two pre-holed brackets in a style that I liked. The best part? The board was only $8 and the brackets were $1.98 a piece. I picked them up at Home Depot and you can find them in the lumber dept. But after looking at it, it looked a little too plain. So picked up a long piece of trim that I liked. I like this leaf pattern because it goes along with a lot of stuff in our house (and it cost about $5 for the whole piece).

I cut the board to the length I wanted, and it's somewhere around 4 feet long. Can't quite remember. I sanded it down very well, and the glued on the trim (making certain it was all cut to size to fit the three sides) and then used finishing nails to nail it in place. Then I spray painted the trimmed and molded board and the brackets in Rustoleum colonial red. Then I added just a hint of glaze to make the detail on the trim pop out.

I was lucky enough to find studs in the wall that were "almost" centered to hang my brackets on. This part was a little tricky, as is getting anything centered and LEVELED on a wall. If it's not level, it looks horrible. So first I hung the brackets, then I put some wood glue on top, placed the board exactly where it needed to be, let it dry, took the whole thing off the wall (being extremely careful because it wasn't quite sturdy and I didn't want the newly dried brackets to snap off). Then I nailed the brackets securely into the board while the whole thing was on the floor. I didn't want to be nailing the pieces together while it was delicately hanging on the wall.

Now that it's all glued and nailed together, it's very sturdy. It is just the right size for that wall and for what I wanted to display on it. Do you like the "LUCKY" blocks? I made those a few years ago and they were super simple. It's just pieces of 2x4s, green paint, and white lettering. I am pleased with how the ensemble turned out!