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Simple Shelf with Hooks

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If you need a shelf in your entry for keys or bathroom for hanging towels, here’s a great idea.  What about in a child’s room for coats or backpacks?finished
This was inspired by this month’s DIH (Do It Herself) Workshop at Home Depot designed by Shanty2Chic.  If you’re not familiar with Ashley & Whitney, they are a must see, especially for anything wood and furniture.  I have attended several classes with them and watched them on Periscope – they are such fun.
Each month on the 3rd Thursday of the month, Home Depot hosts a DIH Workshop a new project is presented.  It’s a great way to learn about anything DIY.  In the past, it’s included working with power tools, tiling, and woodwork.  You can register online. Next month it’s a Rustic Decorative Pumpkin Stand.
I loved the chunky shelf with mitered corners which is being presented but thought I would make a version which would be easier for anyone who is just beginning DIY.  This can be made any length to fit your space.
One reason this is a good starter project, you can get all of your wood and trim cut at Home Depot if you don’t have a saw.
With any project, it’s always easier if you gather everything you need for the project before you start.suppliesSupplies needed:
  • 1″ x 10″ board
  • 1″ x 4″ board
  • Trim board
  • Wood glue
  • Nails – sizes vary
  • Wood putty
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint
  • Wax – clear and dark
  • Hooks
Power tools such as Ryobi Drill and Sander are great to have as you begin to build your power tool collection.
Determine size of shelf and cut the boards and trim to length.  Mine were 26″ in length.
Notice my make-shift table.  It was raining so a workshop was set up on the front porch.  Love my Ryobi saw.  But remember, Home Depot will be glad to cut your boards if you don’t have a saw.
cut trim
cut board
Sand as needed, especially the cut areas.    If you don’t have a power sander, sand paper or a sanding block will work fine too.
For this project, painting after the project was complete was easier to me.
Stand the 10″ board vertically and run a small bead of wood glue along the top edge.  glue shelf
Place the 4″ board as the shelf aligning all the edges.  Having a 2nd person to help hold this helps a lot.  
Drill 3 small pilot holes 1/4″ from the edge for your nails.pilot hole
Nail shelf together.  Wipe off any excess glue with a damp cloth.
Make sure your nail is long enough to go through the shelf and into the wood. Mine were 1 1/2″.  If your shelf is longer, add nails aboutevery 8″ – 10″.
Apply a bead of glue along the under edge of shelf for trim piece.  Use a small nail or brad and attach trim.  Again, wipe off any excess glue with a damp cloth.glue trim
Fill in all nail holes with putty and allow to dry.  Sand if needed.paintUsing Americana Decor Chalky Finish in Everlasting,  apply first coat and allow to dry.  Always follow directions on can.
Since this was unfinished wood, there was a lot of wood grain to raise so a light sanding was needed to smooth it out.  Also, unfinished wood will absorb more paint than a previous painted piece.
Wipe off dust and apply 2nd coat.painted
Let dry.  Although it is dry within 30 minutes, I waited about 2 hours before going to my waxing steps.
Apply Americana Décor Clear Crème Wax over all surfaces using a soft cloth, such as an old t-shirt.  
For the antique look apply Americana Décor Crème Wax in deep brown a small section at a time.  It’s important to apply this wax over clear wax while it is still soft.  This allows you to be able to wipe off any excess dark wax as you apply.  If you get a little more dark wax than desired, use a little clear wax on a soft cloth to remove it.
Allow to dry for about an hour and buff with a soft cloth to bring out a nice shine.
Determine where hooks will be placed.  Using an odd number is always is more eye pleasing.  For 3 hooks, place first one in center then measure out evenly for placement.
Attach hooks with screws provided.finishedDepending on size and weight of shelf, purchase brackets or my favorite, 3M Command Strips to hang.  If this is going onto drywall, anchors are best to use. You can always ask an associate at Home Depot for recommendations.   
I have used  Americana Decor Chalky Finish for several small projects and really like the results.  The waxes are very soft and easy to apply with a rag or a brush.
Anytime using new stains or glazes, I make a sample board to see how it covers.  The longer you leave a stain or dark wax on, the darker it will be.
Always check boards carefully when purchasing to find one straight and no cracks.  
Gather all supplies before starting any project.
Determine which side of the boards you will use for front/back and also top/bottom.  If not painting all sides, mark your non-painted sides either with a Sharpie or a piece of painters tape.
Unfinished wood will absorb more paint, so a primer might be needed.  Various types wood will absorb paint and stains differently.
When painting unfinished wood, the grain of the wood will usually raise a bit so a light sanding helps to smooth.
Pine wood is a softer wood so it’s easier to sand and to nail into.
Drilling a pilot hole before nailing, or inserting a screw, helps to keep the wood from splitting, especially on thinner wood and close to the edge.
If you plan on staining, make sure your wood is stainable.  The putty should be stainable also.  
Wood putty is also great for filling in any uneven places in the woods, such as knots.
Wear gloves to keep stain from getting on your hands.

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I’ve included affiliate links to Amazon for you to find some products easier.  I may receive a small commission, but the price is the same for you.  It just helps my blog out.

Happy Travels, 


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  1. We need this! We just moved into a house where there are no shelves and BOY do we need them. My hubby is very talented with this kind of stuff I can’t wait to show him this!

  2. Thank you for this. We have been looking for a simple shelf idea to use for our son’s room. And this fits that perfectly. Will be using this weekend!!

  3. What a great DIY project. This would be perfect in my house because we have so much stuff…how do such little boys acquire so many things?!?! Sigh.

  4. Love the shelf! Somebody sure is handy and talented with that saw! 🙂 I love that you added a shelf and hooks for dual purpose use! Adorable! Now I have to get my hubs to make me one! 🙂

  5. What a great project! I love that all of your tips make it seem so easy. I’m a non-building kind of person and even I think I could do this because of your great tips!

  6. This would definitely be a great piece to have in a bathroom! Unfortunately I am about as klutzy as they come and would probably end up with stain on everything but where it was intended to go.

  7. What a cute project. I have used Americana Decor Chalky finish paint on other projects in the past. I will be pinning this project for later.

  8. OMG what a cute shelf!!! A shelf like this would be awesome in my entrance way for my daughters backpack!

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