Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Poplar Corner Shelving Tutorial

After a very, very....very long hiatus here at California Poppies, we are up and exploring again. Much has changed in our personal lives over this last year. I wanted this first post back to just be about one of the things we love most here at California Poppies: creating. There is something magical and therapeutic about building/making/creating something. I personally have really missed the sharing aspect of blogging our creations and adventures as well. So here's to a fresh start and new journeys!


My husband and I finished turning our single car garage into a very large (and very nice) master bedroom back in March just in time for the birth of our second child, Severin, in April. I have since then stared at these massive blank walls that I had yet to decorate. So I decided to build some shelves. I have this little corner of my room with a little desk that I am fondly calling my writing nook since I love to write. I needed somewhere to put books I was currently using for research, writing utensils, and other what-nots that I use for inspiration.

We bought 1x8x10 Poplar boards at Lowes for about $30 each. Because I wanted to make corner shelves, my husband cut three boards 2' long and three boards 2'8" long. Then I sprayed some clear sealer on the Poplar.

We also purchased 12 white metal Hillman brackets from Lowes for $1.23 each. I failed to take a picture of the pre-painted brackets but you can find them here. I then used bronze spray paint to paint the brackets.

My husband then used the pocket jig to join the boards together which you can just make out in the above picture next to the right shelf bracket. This is a really important step because without joining the boards this way, the shelf would not be smooth and even where the two pieces of wood meet.

We then used drywall anchors and screws to secure shelves to the wall. It was impossible to find evenly spaced studs so these anchors worked amazingly well. 

Poplar has to be my favorite wood color and grain. It is smooth and has a beautiful pistachio green color running through it. 

I have left the screws the original silver color. I am not sure if I want to paint them the same bronze color as the bracket or leave them. I am kind of diggin' the contrasting metals right now. I will just live with it for now until I decide I'm over it I guess!

I am so happy with how these shelves came out. I want to put them all over my house...though I'm going to try hard to not do that. My house was built in 1953 and these shelves feel very mid-century modern to me (don't know if they really do fit in with that look, but I think so). I love this idea of making your own shelves way better than buying the cheap pre-made laminate shelves that can be just as expensive (or more!) than making your own wooden ones.