DIY Floating Shelves

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I am so excited to FINALLY share this project with you all! I have been working on it for what feels like forever. Wait…you mean…having a baby will drastically change the amount of time in the day you have to accomplish things?!?! Case in point, I’ve been trying to write this blog post for 3 days now 🙂

When I started placing the furniture in the nursery, I knew I wanted this corner to be the “play” corner or the area for all the toys. Landon already owns quite a few books so a book shelf seemed like the way to go but I also wanted room for some sort of toy box (a post on that to come in the future) so shelves up on the wall were necessary for space. Enter the DIY Floating Shelves from Shanty 2 Chic. If you haven’t checked out their site before and you enjoy DIY building, check them out. If you’ve ever searched for DIY building projects on Pinterest, chances are you’ve come across some of their work. Their projects are always really well explained and the plans are very detailed.

I did make some adjustments to the original plans because the plans called shelves that were 3.5′ in either direction and I only had room for 2′. So, my plans are for 2′ long corner shelves and the materials listed are enough for 3 shelves. If you follow the plans on Shanty 2 Chic, their plans are for 3.5′ shelves and the materials listed are for 1 shelf so make sure you double or triple the amount of wood depending on how many shelves you want.

So, here we go…step by step 🙂

Supplies
NOTE: Before purchasing the wood, see the note in step 6 regarding the 2×4 and 1×6 boards

3 – 2″ x 4″ x 8′
2 – 1/4″ x 24″ x 48″ plywood
2 – 1″ x 10″ x 8′
2 – 1″ x 6″ x 8′
kreg jig for pocket holes
drill
2 1/2″ pocket screws
nail gun
1 1/4″ brad nails
3″ screws (torx or dry wall, whatever you prefer, these will be to screws the support boards to the wall and into a stud)
stud finder
wood glue
paint
hardware (for decorative purposes, I’ll show you what I used when I get to that part below)

Step 1: You will need to determine the height placement of each shelf. You want to think about what you are going to put on the shelves and how much space you need in between each one. I wanted my shelves to take up the majority of the corner and knew I was going to be putting some taller items and books on them so here are the measurements I used…
Floor to ceiling, the room is 96″ tall. Each shelf is approximately 4.5″ tall. Based on that, I measured out equal spacing from ceiling to the top shelf, between each shelf, and from bottom shelf to the floor, which was 20.5″.
Ceiling
20.5″
Shelf #1: 4.5″
20.5″
Shelf #2: 4.5″
20.5″
Shelf #3: 4.5″
20.5″
Floor

You will also want to locate the studs in your wall and mark those as well as you will drill each wall cleat directly into a stud.

Step 2: Build your wall cleats.
Using the 2″ x 4″ x 8′, make the following cuts
3 pieces @ 2′ (long wall cleat)
3 pieces @ 1′ 10 1/2″ (short wall cleat)
12 pieces @ 7 5/8″ (cleat braces)

When constructing each wall cleat, you will use one long wall cleat, one short wall cleat and 4 cleat braces, 2 1/2″ pocket screws and wood glue.
Using a kreg jig, drill for 2 1/2″ pocket screws into one end of each cleat brace then attach the cleat braces to the cleats as shown. I didn’t measure the placement of the cleat braces, just lined up the wall cleats (long wall cleat against the corner, short wall cleat against the long wall cleat) and then marked where the cleat braces should go so that they just met each other at the corner edge. The other two cleat braces went at the opposite ends of the wall cleats.

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Step 3: Attach wall cleats to the wall
Use a drill bit that is slightly smaller than the 3″ screws. Line up a wall cleat where you want it and drill a pilot hold into the wall cleat directly over the stud, check for level. Using the 3″ screws, attach the wall cleat to the wall in at least 2 different points.

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Step 4: Attach bottom panels to braces
You are basically going to wrap the braces in wood to build out your shelf. Using the 1/4″ plywood, make the following cuts (I made the cuts at home but if you don’t have a saw, you can ask some in the lumber department to make the cuts for you)
3 pieces @ 23 1/4″ x 9 1/4″ (long bottom panel)
3 pieces @ 14″ x 9 1/4″ (short bottom panel)
Use a wood glue, a nail gun and 1/4″ brad nails to attach 1 long bottom panel and 1 short bottom panel to each set of braces.

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Step 5: Attach top panel to braces
Using the 1″ x 10″ x 8′ make the following cuts
3 pieces @ 23 1/4″ (long top panel)
3 pieces @ 14″ (short top panel)
Attach 1 long top panel and 1 short top panel to each set of braces using wood glue, 1 1/4″ finish nails and a nail gun.

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Step 6: Attach the side trim
Using the 1″ x 6″ x 8′ make the following cuts
6 pieces @ 4 1/2″ x 9 1/4″ (side front trim)
NOTE: Because 2×4 are used for the wall cleats, it requires the front and side trim to be only 4 1/2″ wide which is not a width you can buy and will have to rip the board down to 4 1/2″. Again, you can have them do it for you in the lumber department. If you have a table saw at home then you can do it yourself. The other option would be to use 2″ x 3″ for the walls cleats instead of 2″ x 4″. By using 2″ x 3″, you will not need to alter the width of the 1″ x 6″ boards.
Attach side front trim pieces using the same method, wood glue, a nail gun and 1 1/4″ finish nails.

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Step 7: Attach front trim pieces
Using the remaining 1″ x 6″ x 8′ boards, make the following cuts
3 pieces @ 14 3/4″ x 4 1/2″
3 pieces @ 14″ x 4 1/2″
Attach using the same method, wood glue, a nail gun and 1 1/4″ finish nails

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Step 8: Finish with paint and decorate!
I used wood filler to fill in nail holes and the seams. Once dried, I went over the wood filler with 180 grit sand paper to smooth it out.

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I used Heirloom Traditions chalk paint in A La Mode to finish the shelves, topped with clear wax, and sanded the edges for a roughed up look.

Finally, I added some hardware to the corners to give the shelves a bit of an industrial look to compliment some of the other pieces in the nursery.

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I used metal corner braces similar to these from Lowes, and furniture tacks to attach them, spray painted all the pieces with black matte finish spray paint and roughed them up with some sand paper before attaching.

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That’s that! Then I decorated 🙂

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Nursery Closet Makeover

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I CAN NOT believe my baby is already 2 weeks old!! How did that happen already! We have spent the last 2 weeks getting to know each other, I’m learning all his cues and we are really starting to get into a good rhythm. Luckily, it seems he has taken after me in the sleep department and not his dad because he is a GREAT sleeper! We get a 5-6 hour stretch each night and then back to sleep for another 2-3 hours after feeding! Can’t complain about that! On top of that, he is eating really well and gaining weight 🙂 Happy mama!

In my haste to get tasks accomplished before Landon arrived, I failed to take any before photos of the inside of the nursery closet. Fail. I do, however, have the real estate photo from before we moved in of what the room looked like before, just to give you an idea. The closet was pretty simple before I started, just a single hang bar with a single shelf above it. Nothing fancy. It also had sliding doors on the front which I removed…haven’t really decided yet if I am going to leave the doors off or put them back on. I have a feeling his closet isn’t going to stay pretty and organized for very long so the doors may go back on in the future 🙂

Here is the room before…

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Pretty sure Landon had a few diapers that were that same color in his first few days 🙂 Just can’t really understand someone standing in the paint department at Lowe’s looking at this green and thinking…”yep, that’s the one!” SMH.

Anyway, first step was to remove the closet doors and then I removed the hang bar and shelf that were inside leaving a blank canvas. I painted the inside of the closet the same color as the walls, Valspar Lyndhurst Timber from Lowe’s.

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Next, I purchased and installed the closet shelving. I knew I was going to want and need room for hanging as well as room for organization so I needed some shelving as well and I wanted the unit to be white. I searched multiple brands and stores. There are quite a few different options out there, ultimately I went with this option (Allen & Roth Wood Closet Kit) because of price and because I liked how it had 3 hang bars which left room on the left side for the laundry bin (which is tall, to keep it off the ground and away from the dogs) and I liked the option to add on with other pieces and customize the look if I chose to.

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 Once the closet kit was installed, I added these cute wood grain boxes from The Container Store for organizing. On a side note, can we talk about how obsessed I have been with The Container Store these last few months. Granted, I’ve been nesting, but I could literally spend HOURS in that place! It’s not just baskets, boxes and bins! Pretty sure I’ll be getting my holiday wrapping paper from them.

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I ordered these dark walnut wood hangers from OnlyHangers.com to complete the look. There are a few different color options and I ordered some with and without pant clips.

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Finally, I finished the space with this cute antique wash tub that my mom gave me at one of my baby showers. I was originally going to use it for toys or blankets but then decided it would be perfect for dirty laundry because it was high up off the ground so the dogs wouldn’t be able to get to it. I don’t have the info on this one in particular but I found a galvanized version on Wayfair and linked it here. You could always spray paint and sand the edges if you wanted a different color and distressed look.

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That is the gist of it! Hope this is inspiring for you. It really was an easy update, the closet kit took me about an hour to put together and another hour to install and anchor to the wall. I plan to use the same kits when I redo our master bedroom closets. However, when that actually happens is anyone’s guess 🙂

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Room Makeover…Home Bar

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Last week when I was sick, I started re-watching the Gossip Girl series on DVD. It helped pass the 4 days I spent in bed. The problem…now I can’t stop watching episodes…back-to-back-to-back. It is making me completely unproductive. All I’ve gotten accomplish today is eaten 2 meals, watched 4 episodes and styled the new little bar area of our dining room.

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I’ve had this buffet for a few years and wanted to give it an update. There is a new trend in furniture called cerused wood. You use white or light wood filler against a dark stain or paint, cover the surface with filler and wipe off the excess so that the original paint or stain shows through and the wood grain is emphasized by the filler.

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This technique came around in the 1950’s and is coming back in a big way. I sanded the edges to distress the piece a bit and removed the nickel hardware and spray painted it gold.

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I found this cutie little mirrored tray at Homegoods and the even cuter lit “Bar” sign from Michael’s.

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These shelves and brackets are from Lowe’s. The brackets are plain pine wood that I painted with Heirloom Traditions chalk paint in Black Bean, topped with clear wax, then sanded the edges. The shelf is a pre-cut piece of pine that I stained with Minwax Dark Walnut stain. The cocktail tools, corkscrew, topper and bottle opener, are from the Nate Berkus collection for Target.

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These birch blocks are some of my favorites. So cute and rustic paired with candles.

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Time for a drink 😉

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Room Makeover…Janae’s Master Bedroom

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This past weekend was so much fun for me! Not only did I get to make a trip to Seattle to see most of my girlfriends from college but I got to do my first room makeover in someone else’s home! Now this project didn’t start out as a room makeover but it gradually progressed into that because we were having so much fun that we just couldn’t stop.

I got a text from my friend Janae one day that said “Our room is so sad! It needs a makeover.” I’m sure you all know this too well, it is so common that the last room in the house to get any attention is the master bedroom. Unless you have just recently moved in and are giving your guests a house tour, you just don’t usually take people into this room and therefore it tends to get a little neglected.

We started with photos of her room…here is the room before:

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So here is what we had to work with, the walls were already a great color, a nice shade of grayish-blue and the carpet accented them well in a nice charcoal color. The trim in the room was all in great shape in bright white and had nice crown moulding as well. Janae also had these beautiful sheer grey window panels that she wanted to incorporate into the new room. The first thing we decided was that the dark red accents needed to go as they were making the room too dark and she definitely needed a headboard.

We started looking at photos of headboards to decide on the look she wanted and we landed on a wood headboard that had a distressed look in a driftwood grey color. We were going to make the headboard ourselves and this would be my first major carpentry project so I started researching the “how-to”. I have always LOVED Ana White, if you haven’t been to her site, please check it out. This woman is amazing and posts 100’s of plans for all different types of furniture building. Janae decided on the Reclaimed Wood Headboard, so we went to Lowe’s and then got to work on it (I will post the full DIY on how to build the headboard this week so be on the lookout!). The headboard turned out beautifully and was exactly what we were going for.

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Once we finished the headboard, we went on the hunt for bedding in the new color scheme, mostly grey and yellow with blue accents. At T.J. Maxx, Janae spotted this gorgeous quilt with colors that matched exactly what we were looking for. They happened to have matching pillow shams as well so we grabbed those and some sheer yellow curtain panels to replace the dark red curtains she already had. We found the sheets, bed skirt and yellow accent pillow at Homegoods.

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Next up was a little wall décor, Janae wanted a family photo wall above the bed so we grabbed an assortment of wood frames from Goodwill and spray painted them white. She picked out some photos and we converted them to black and white and had prints done through Walgreens photo center. Then we just laid the frames out on the bed and rearranged them until we got the desired look.

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We decided that since we told her husband Chris we were just building a headboard and that it wouldn’t cost him much that we should probably stop there. Didn’t want to shock is wallet too much 🙂 Ultimately, Janae spent under $300 to build and paint the headboard, and for the bedding, curtains and pictures. A quick and inexpensive update to make her master bedroom a place she enjoys relaxing with her family.

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