DIY Shelves

Posted by Ashley Robustelli on

Shelving units can be expensive to purchase from retail stores, but customers don't realize how simple and cheap they are to make with their own two hands! I recently asked my followers what DIY tutorials they would like to see, and shelves was the most-requested answer. So, I delivered! This design is extremely simple, and minimal tools are required. If you do not own any power tools, you can actually get the hardware store to cut wood for you for free (Lowes or Home Depot)!

*You can watch a video of this tutorial on the Fearfully Made Creations Instagram profile. Find 'DIY Shelves' saved in the story highlights.


  • (1) 1x2x8 wood board
  • (1) 1x4x8 wood board
  • (1) 1x6x8 wood board
  • Wood glue (gorilla brand is the best)
  • 2"+ nails (I used brad nails with a nail gun)
  • 3" wood screws
  • Stain/paint of choice


  • Saw (miter, table, etc - or ask hardware store to cut)
  • Sander (or sand by hand with sandpaper)
  • Drill
  • Nail gun (or hammer)
  • Level
  • Kregjig (optional for further reinforcement)


First, you need to decide how long you want your shelves to be! I settled on 4 feet wide for mine. So with the supplies listed above, I was able to make 2 shelves. 

Measure and cut each piece of wood to the desired length (4ft for me). You want each piece to be the same length. I used a miter saw to cut my wood, but as mentioned previously, if you don't own power tools, you can purchase wood from Lowes or Home Depot and ask them to cut it for you (they may or may not depending on how busy they are).

Next, sand the edges to get rid of any splinters and ensure a smooth finish. After sanding, assemble the shelves. Position them into order first: the skinniest piece standing in front, the widest piece flat in the middle, and the final piece standing in the back (seen in photo below).

Then use a thin line of gorilla glue to secure each piece together. For further reinforcement, add nails along the connections on both the front and back ends. I recommend 2" nails (at least) if you plan to put substantial weight on these shelves. You can also use a kregjig for better support.

Wipe any excess glue and allow time for the glue to dry (few hours). Then you can paint or stain the shelves any color that you'd like. Allow the shelves more time to dry, then you are ready to hang them.

When hanging, be sure to use a level! We used 3" wood screws and a study finder to anchor the shelves directly into studs. Each shelf received at least 3 screws to anchor it to the wall. Then you are ready to add decor and style them!

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