Friday, March 25, 2011

Lazy Girl DIY Cafe Shelves

I love the look of Ballard Design's Cafe Shelves.  The price?  Not so much...

But I was determined to have cafe shelving for my laundry room makeover.  And I wanted it to be cheap and easy! (that's the kind of girl I am!)

After a trip to Ikea and Home Depot I had the supplies to make a lazy girl version.  All for $46 for two shelves.

Here's what you need to make your own.
Supplies for one shelf:
  • 1 White Ikea Ekby Osten shelf
  • 2 White Ikea Ekby Hensvik brackets
  • At least 6ft of pre-primed trim of your choice (mine was sold in 8ft lengths & it was helpful to have extra)
  • Nail gun
  • Mitre box
  • Awl
  • Paintable caulk or wood filler
  • White Paint

1. Start by cutting one end of the trim at 45 degree angle using your mitre box.
2. Line up the cut end with one corner of the front of the shelf and mark where to make the cut for the other corner. Then cut the other side of the trim.
3. Attach the trim to the front of the shelf with your nail gun.  
4. For the sides cut one side of each piece of trim flat using the middle slot of the mitre box.  Since the ends of the trim were already cut this way I tried to use these sections of the trim for the sides. (See?  I told you I was a lazy girl!
5. Line up the flat side with the back of the shelf and mark where to make your cut to form the corner. Make your cuts with the mitre box.
6. Nail the side pieces into place.
7. Counter-sink the nails using an awl & fill the holes with caulk.
8.  Give the the trim a quick coat of paint.
9.  Attach the brackets to the wall.  Ikea does not sell the brackets with hardware so you will need your own screws.  Then attach the shelves to the brackets and your lazy girl DIY cafe shelves are done!
I made these in my family room while the kids watched Scooby Doo.  They really are quick and easy to make and the results are lovely.  Do you need some cute shelving in your home?

Thanks for visiting!


  1. Great job! I'm thinking of doing something like this above the toilet in our master bathroom. It's painted dark blue, and I have one white decorative piece hanging on one wall, but it needs more to break it up I think.

  2. that looks amazing! love that wallpaper you used on the wall too, great space:)

  3. That beats the stuffing out of designer prices and they still look hefty and expensive.

  4. Really nice and thanks for sharing the step-by-step instructions. I have several bare walls to build shelves for! :) I love your blog, great design!


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