This Mitreplan has lots of ideas for shelving, and lots of useful information to
help you design and build them. Kevin added an idea to the plan – floating
shelves. These are the kinds that seem to hang from a wall with no visible means
of support. To do it, Kevin used a hollow-core door (commonly found inside
Step 1: Mark and cut your shelves from the door. Kevin cut his at 250mm, but
reckons you could go up to about 300mm maximum. If you cut across the door your
shelves will typically be 820mm, or lengthwise they will be 2040mm. Simply use a
straight fence and a circular saw. The cut is easy to make because the door is
hollow (except for some cardboard).
Step 2: Fit a timber batten to the shelf. Cut or plane a length of 32mm square
pine or maple to fit exactly between the two skins on the door. Push the
cardboard honeycomb in with your fingers to allow enough room.
Step 3: Fix the batten to the wall at the required height and perfectly level.
It’s important that the batten is fixed very solidly to the wall, so screw it
directly to the studs (the vertical timbers hidden behind the plasterboard). If
necessary, use toggle bolts on the batten ends if they’re not near a stud.
Step 4: Slip the shelf onto the batten to test the fit. If the wall’s not
straight, you may need to “scribe” it (plane it to fit) so there’s no large
gaps. Squeeze a bead of high-strength glue along the batten (Selleys Durabond is
ideal) and drive in a few panel pins (fine nails) to hold the shelf square and
level until the glue cures.
Step 5: Paint and load ‘em up!
You can also use solid
timber, particleboard or MDF to build floating shelves by simply using a router
to make a groove in the back edge. Just watch out for weight, though – the ones
made from hollow doors are super light, so they don’t sag.
MITREPLANS on installing your own shelving are available at all Mitre 10
stores across Australia