DIY best of: shelving projects!


Few homes are blessed with built-in shelving, so storage is often something we have to figure out for ourselves. Luckily there are endless variations of shelf designs out there, and while shelving is a very utilitarian item, it can also make a great decor element. I’ve rounded up some of our best DIY shelves that pull double-duty as storage and display. Whether you want to store a huge collection or just a small gathering of objects, I hope there’s a shelf project here to suit your style and needs. Enjoy! — Kate

Have a DIY project you’d like to share? Shoot me an email with your images right here! (Low res, under 500k per image, please)

Image above: Derek and Lauren’s wine crate display cases provide versatile shelving for storage and display.

CLICK HERE to see more DIY shelving projects after the jump!

Image above: Rachel’s floating rustic log shelves

Image above: If you come across old pallets on a regular basis, you could try making your own version of  Claire’s lovely and inexpensive pallet shelf configuration.

Image above: A rustic leaning wall shelf can be a beautiful display for books, small trinkets and flowers.

Image above: Derek and Lauren’s simple modern tea shelf houses everything you need for tea time.

Image above: Susannah’s atlas-inspired shelves

Image above: Cheap, easy and so clever: Derek and Lauren’s catch-all shelf made from a magazine holder!

Image above: Amy’s vintage crate shelves add rustic charm to your kitchen storage.

Image above: If your modular shelving is looking a little dull, use Haylie’s decorative shelf edging to jazz it up.

Image above: Simple and lovely framed display box

Image above: Driftwood display shelf

  1. Tess says:

    Loving #6, 7 and 10.

  2. April says:

    Love almost all of these. The magazine holder is great with the curve. I’m trying to convince my husband crates-as-shelving are acceptable in our tiny house, so thanks for this post!

  3. Heidi says:

    Gah! I love that tea shelf! Definitely putting that on my to-do list.

  4. hena tayeb says:

    I love the first one..

  5. sara says:

    this is timely! all I can think about are shelves these days #toomanybooks

  6. Brannon says:

    Great ideas! I have a number of wine crates I use for storage of shoes and bags, but never thought to use them as shelving, let alone lined with fun paper. I have a new weekend project on my hands!

  7. Melissa says:

    These are really great ideas. I love how, more and more, we’re turning to rustic design. It’s so much more interesting.

  8. Izabella says:

    I love the wallpaper inside of wooden crates! So fun. Does anyone have any ideas/suggestions of where to find wooden crates? The only ones I find tend to be very overpriced at antiques stores and flea markets!

  9. Sophia says:

    i loooove it !! <3

  10. helen says:

    so jealous of the slightly newer house with proper walls you can hang shelves from. It just isn’t possible in Edinburgh, Scotland- tenement flats have lath and plaster walls- no studs per se- and the plaster typically crumbly and old.

    My Granny (93) tells the story of hearing a kitchen cabinet full of antique crockery fall off the wall when she was a newlywed… We have put up a few shelves ourselves but it’s always a leap of faith loading them. Sadly free standing units don’t necessarily fare better as the right angle is something or a rarity too…many of my walls lean out slightly from the perpendicular, so there can be quite a gap at the top of the shelving before the wall…makes it hard to secure them too!

  11. My favorites are the first and last. I love the minimalist effect of the driftwood one.

  12. ivette says:

    love it!
    I’m definitely gonna give this DIY a try.. looks fab!
    love your blog, stay cool..

  13. The magazine holder shelf is beautiful! The curvature of it gives such a contrast to its place in the corner between the two walls. Great idea!

  14. Belly B says:

    I love the log shelves. So creative!!! All these pictures have definitely satisfied my appetite for useful, innovative shelves :)

  15. Annelies says:

    I love them all, but the magazine holder I like best. How simple, but effective. Thanks for the inspiration!

  16. These are wonderful. I love the different ways that shelving can be made.

    Cheers!

  17. Adam Booth says:

    Great quirky ideas.

    Love the magazine holder used as a shelf and really like the jars hanging from the bottom of the ‘modern tea shelf’. Wonderful idea.

    The idea of the ‘framed display box’ is great because it can be used as a changeable piece of art and can be updated at will but still have the visual effect of a framed picture.

    Excellent collection.

  18. Susana says:

    the log shelf and the magazine holder ones won my heart

  19. Nikki says:

    i have a slight addiction to pallets atm. mag holder is wonderful too.

  20. Barbara says:

    Our house is about 130yrs old with plaster walls and we have had some bad experiences with things falling off the wall. Maybe the magazine rack would work without anything heavy on it. Great ideas

  21. Love em all! Great finds.

  22. reeve says:

    such great ideas!! Thanks for sharing

  23. Nowvintage says:

    oh I am not sure why I love shelves so much, and mostly these creative unique ideas people have!! I could have looked at many many more..thanks!

  24. Jen says:

    Love the rustic log shelves – can anyone id the plant with the large heart shaped leaves? (not the strings of pearls)

  25. DesignBoxx says:

    Brilliant brilliant brilliant. I don’t even know what else to say. I love it ALL!

  26. Kate says:

    do you think that the crates that clementine oranges come in are deep enough for a project like this?

  27. Amy says:

    These are ALL so wonderful, creative, functional and artistic. Thank you for bringing the focus back! Life can be so wonderful in the simplicity of things.

  28. Darby says:

    One of my favourite round-ups of all time! The magazine one definitely takes the cake, who thinks of these things?!?! Want, want, want to all of the above! P.s. I had to reference this on my blog, couldn’t resist!

  29. Rob Marchant says:

    Some of those shelves are beautiful!

    Great work :0)

  30. tinker says:

    Jen – The main name is Philodendron, there are dozens of different kinds, but the 2 heart ones are, Heartleaf philodendron, and Velvet-leaf philodendron. Source, http://www.bhg.com/gardening/plant-dictionary/houseplant/philodendron/

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