Creating Built-In Bookshelves for Kids: A Stunning Addition to Any Space

Faced with a staggering $12,000 quote for custom built-in bookshelves in her children’s game room, they embarked on a DIY adventure to achieve their vision.

What they accomplished was truly remarkable—a stunning makeover that fulfilled their initial aspirations and exceeded expectations in elegance and cost-effectiveness. This project is a testament to DIY endeavors’ collaborative efforts, ingenuity, and transformative potential.

Step 1: Preparation

The first step is to prepare your space. Remove the baseboards to ensure the bookshelves are flush with the wall.

  1. Score along the caulk line with a utility knife to minimize damage to your wall.
  2. Pry the baseboard off with a putty knife.

Remember to be careful while removing the baseboard, as you want to avoid unnecessary wall repairs later on.

Step 2: Building Built-In Bookshelves Base

The next step is building your base for the bookshelf. We’re using four IKEA cabinets raised on box frames for our project. This provides a sturdy foundation and brings the bookshelf off the ground.

  1. Build box frames to provide a lift for your cabinets.
  2. Screw the cabinets into the studs for maximum stability.

Ensure that all cabinets are evenly spaced and level before proceeding to the next step.

Step 3: Stacking and Attach the Shelves

Once the base is secure, it’s time to stack and attach the shelves.

  1. Cut your IKEA bookshelves to size. You may want a second layer of shelving for your built-ins.
  2. Attach the cut bookshelves to the base. Securely fasten each shelf and ensure they are level.
  3. Fill any gaps with trim.

Remember to measure accurately before cutting and attaching shelves.

Step 4: Constructing Cubbies

Adding cubbies above the TV gives additional space for organization and adds a stylish touch to your built-ins.

  1. Use a Kreg jig to construct your cubbies.
  2. Install your cubbies on top of your bookshelves.

Step 5: Adding Trims and Finishing Touches

The final step involves adding trims, filling, sanding, and painting your built-ins.

  1. Add trims across the baseboard and the top of your bookshelves.
  2. Fill any remaining gaps with caulk, then sand for a smooth finish.
  3. Apply a coat of primer. Consider using a gray-tinted primer for better coverage if your final paint color is dark.
  4. Paint your built-ins using a paint sprayer for a professional finish. Apply multiple coats for a sleek and smooth result.

Ensure to lightly sand, vacuum, and wipe every inch with a tack cloth between every coat of primer and paint for a professional finish.

Bonus Tip: Door Adjustments

Sometimes, the doors might not fit perfectly. In such cases, you can adjust the hinges or build new doors to ensure a smooth opening and closing mechanism. Remember always to double-check measurements to avoid unnecessary revisions.

Wrapping Up

Creating built-in bookshelves for your kids’ room is a fun and rewarding DIY project. You can create a stunning and practical addition to your space with patience and the right tools. Share your thoughts about this project, and let us know how it turned out!

Remember, DIY projects are a journey. It’s all about learning and improving your skills. Even if you make mistakes, don’t be discouraged. Every mistake is a learning opportunity, leading to an even more successful project next time!

For a wealth of ideas and inspiration, visit @nichole_schofield’s page.