Building custom built in bookshelves

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building custom built in bookshelves

How to Build a Bookcase: Step-by-Step Woodworking Plans

Subscribe to "Homedit" on YouTube to keep up with all of our videos and shows. Older homes like to show off with honeyed wood floors, thick strong trim and beautiful built in shelves and cabinets. Some people have found ways to bring these traditional elements into newer homes to give the house a storied feel, but rarely will you see built in shelves in a new home. Most seem to think that built ins are for old homes only. However, there are ways to can make your own built in shelves. No matter how old your home is, it will benefit from a little extra storage space. View in gallery.
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DIY Built In Shelves Library Cabinets

How I Built Custom Built-ins All by Myself!

We have fun with woodworking no matter what the project is, but the most rewarding thing for us is making our own furniture. Let's say you wanted a solid oak bookcase but didn't have the four to six hundred bucks a retail store would want for one. You can achieve the same effect for less than half the cost, using a bit of solid oak trim and some veneered ply. Note: As this is a Craftsman-sponsored project, you'll notice a number of Craftsman tools in the photos. But here's a secret: we already owned 'em all. You can, of course, attack this project with tools of your choice.

In all my days of DIY, this has been my biggest project to date. And you know what? It took me about 2 weeks, but if I were to add it all up it was only 3 or 4 days worth of actual work because you know, stay at home mom. I love how custom built-ins can just make a space. I was a little intimidated at first with this project, but decided to jump in head-first and get it done.

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Our posts contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on these links, we will earn a small commission, which helps to keep our content free. You don't pay a cent more than you would otherwise, since that would be tacky! Read our full privacy and disclosure policy here. If you missed it, this was just a blank wall in our living room. This post has the step by step tutorial of how to build these bookshelves using IKEA Billy Bookcases or similar inexpensive bookcases. They look just like built-ins and provide great storage!

I built my first bookcase in middle school. A multitiered assemblage of wooden planks laid across stacks of bricks, it was reminiscent of pieces from the early Flintstone Period--and I was proud to have made it myself. Since that masterpiece, I've built 50 or 60 more, most while working as a cabinetmaker for an interior design firm, where I learned the carpentry skills, design guidelines and construction techniques used in the bookcase shown here. Basically consisting of three plywood boxes fitted with a hardwood face frame, this piece looks built-in because it spans from wall to wall, and is trimmed with molding at the ceiling and floor. With moderate skills and some patience, it wouldn't be hard to make this project fit any space. On permanent display: mahogany, solid biscuit joints--and a whole lot of class. Two pieces of plywood form each side of the cases.

Sure, you can pick up some knock-together set of shelves, but built-ins provide so much more than just a place to stash your stuff. Made to rise ceiling high, create an alcove for furniture, or wrap an existing nook, they can add style, charm, and architecture to an interior, all while offering custom storage and display space. Here, seven ways to make them special. Bookcases arranged to form a passageway and united with flat trim create a mini library, complete with a rolling ladder that beckons young readers to hunt for a good book on the topmost shelves. Designer Bret Franks came up with the idea as a way to add old-house character to a new farmhouse with a completely open first floor beyond this office space. Apple-green backing keeps the built-ins fun and family-friendly, as does the mix of objects dotting the adjustable-height shelves.

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