The Bookshelf



My wife and I are always collecting books.  We have a lot of them, and our last house had a large bookshelf. We needed another one for our new house. So I set out to design something for our living room using Google SketchUp. SketchUp has made this project much easier to visualize before we created anything. We started with wanting to create shelves on the top and have over sized drawers for the bottom. This would allow us to hide things away in a house with not enough closet space.

I decided to make some of the shelves adjustable and we bought this tracking. I wanted it to look cleaner so I used a router and inset the tracks. I made my own jigs for building the bookshelf so that I was sure everything would go together the same on all the different sections. We are using birch pre-sanded plywood for the structure and we are using poplar trim for facing and edge work.

We would need three large sections all identical like the above picture. This was our first one, and you can see the pride on my wife’s face. We are a great team.

Here in this picture you can also see my cutting jig on the floor in front of my wife. Just took the factory edge of some scrap, and screwed it to another piece of scrap. Used that edge as a guide to cut the bottom piece, and now it acts as a straight edge for me to clamp to other wood. I can Just zip right down this jig using it as a perfect guide.


test paint

Testing paint colors here. My wife picked the colors and did a great job. The old stuff was a little too much for most people (we bought it that way).

Even though we still aren’t finished, we have already secured the sections to each other and to the wall. I have installed lights and the adjustable shelves. We have also finish facing the front with the poplar. After putting some books on there, we decided we needed another shelf at the bottom instead of drawers. We have so many books they just didn’t all fit correctly.

We still need to finish the crown molding, base trim work and some paint, but all in all this has turned out pretty well.

IMG_0121After some time, we were able to get the crown and bottom molding on, and only need to finish a little bit on the side with sanding and paint.


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