DIY Ladder Shelf

Having an artistic home is a million people’s dream. Who don’t want to have that? But sometimes it brings new dilemma. Renovating or redecorating your home is usually facing these cases: either it’s too expensive to buy new furniture or ornament, and you have no extra space for additional stuffs. But, is it really necessary?

To overcome this problem, making remodeling your old stuff as your personal DIY project is an awesome way to freshen the look of your room without allocating more budget to buy the new one. The thing that can be great is doing a DIY ladder shelf.

At the first place when you were building or renovating your home, it most likely you had one or two ladders to support your construction. But, it will be no longer useful when the construction has finished. To let it be abandoned and dusty in your warehouse is totally out of option.

That is the valid reason you have to utilize it into something that will blow your mind without adding new hassle to call constructor because you can make it into do-it-yourselves!

Despite the aesthetic value you may get from DIY ladder shelf, it can be the best solution if you need more storage for your knickknacks but only have very limited space. With ladder shelf, your can easily move it into whenever you want because it is lighter than conventional drawer. So, here it is the step by step, tips, and tricks!

1. Well Prepared Is A Must: Make Sure It Gets Ready Before Starting DIY ladder shelf

In order to ease the troublesome of renovating your ladder shelf, there are plenty appliances and materials you need to prepare first. These are the basic needs, means you still have chance to modify based on your personal requests.

Appliances that are useful for your DIY ladder shelf project:

  • Circular saw
  • Mitre saw
  • Nail gun
  • Screw, screw clamps, or coach screws
  • Brush
  • Drill or screwdriver
  • Glue for wood

Materials which to be well prepared:

  • Wood panel with the size roughly 2000 x 600 x 18 cm
  • Wooden planks (2) approximately 70 x 1800 x 18 cm
  • Oak varnish or wood paint

Fortunately, these simple materials will not charge you too much. You just need to spare for maximum 65 USD in order to make beautiful DIY ladder shelf. At the moment when all the required things are already available and you are ready to start this project, you can finish it in no more than a day. But the result may be vary depends on the paint and varnish. Just imagine how quick your room will be better than ever!

2. Beauty in Simplicity: Leaning Shelves with Various Depths

ladder shelf

When you have plethora ornaments, books, jewelry, or anything which need to be stored, you can consider this kind of DIY ladder shelf that has five shelves in various depths. You can fill the shortest one with books and the largest one with basket or box.

Basically, you can personalize the size based on the remaining space inside your room. But this is the initial guidance you can use whenever you feel mixed up:

  • Two long wood for the pole 7 x 176 cm
  • 20 pieces of wood for the shelves with different measurement:
    • 60 x 30 cm (1)
    • 60 x 25 cm (1)
    • 60 x 20 cm (1)
    • 60 x 15 cm (1)
    • 60 x 10 cm (1)
    • 60 x 7 cm (5)
    • 23 x 8,5 cm (2)
    • 18,5 x 8,5 cm (2)
    • 13,5 x 8,5 cm (2)
    • 8,5 x 8,5 cm (2)
    • 3 x 8,5 cm (2)

Now, let us get started.

Step 1: cut and converge the shelves

Make sure you already have pieces of shelves with the measurement above. Then, cut the wood for the legs in 8 degrees angle with metre saw. If it is already finished, you can converge the pieces.

Stick and nail the small one (30 x 7 cm) into every piece for that shelf (all various of depths, started with 30 until 10 cm). Repeat it again for all side and then position it on the edge of width wise.

Step 2: accentuate with varnish or paint

Wood is vulnerable enough to termite or any other destructive insects. That is why we need to protect your DIY ladder shelf by oak tinted varnish or wooden paint. But, it doesn’t only for functional purpose but also to beautify the finishing look. You will get sensation of rustic chic to that shelves. Interesting, right?

Actually, you can do this step at the moment when the shelves are converged. But it is possible to trap you in another hassle, like the varnish or paint doesn’t well blended and hard for you to reach every single corner of the shelves. So, the win-win solution is painting or varnishing it right now before the shelves unit are ready.

Step 3: converge the shelves unit

Last but not least, convert the pieces of shelves to be the whole perfect unit. But before that, make sure the paint or varnish is well dry and ready to be used.

Locate the shelving on a flat surface near a wall and lean it on its back. You can lie every leg on both sides of the shelves. Embed it with the screw clamps. Use the drill driver to screw it on the coach screw.

Step 4: ready to be used!

Yeah, finally your DIY ladder shelf is done! In this final step is, placed your beautiful new shelves on your desired spot and don’t forget to lean it against the wall. You can start it with filling up with your lovely books, knickknacks, jewelry boxes, decorations, or binders. Whatever you want.

3. Accentuate Your Room with Industrial Style: Double Ladder Shelves Unit

tier ladder shelf

Another way to have DIY project but don’t have time to overcome the troublesome, then you can utilize your abandon step ladder to add vertical storage which not only functional but can blow your guest’s mind.

Different with the previous idea, this kind of DIY ladder shelf, you will only need few simpler stuffs to be prepared since we still preserve the initial form without too much changes.

To get things ready, you have to assemble two ladders with similar size, plywood cut with various measurement (make your adjustment based on your needs and available space), and paint which is specially designed for wood or varnish.

First thing first, color your ladders which in similar size and let it dry properly. Locate them side by side with the stairs go against each other.

Secondly, gauge the shelves. You have to set up the plywood which span in the middle of the ladders on DIY ladder shelf and rest roughly five to six inches beyond every single step. Then, cut the plywood until it fits with the basic measurement and balance with the gap between one and another ladder.

Paint this board and let it dry. To avoid the boredom of having single tone, you can combine two different color but still in the same palette. To strengthen the industrial look, use black or another deep color to pop up the masculinity side but still show your taste of design.

Lastly, you can organize the plywood boards on that steps until the DIY ladder shelf is converged to be one steady shelving unit. Arrange every ornaments and decorations you have on this new storage.

4. Spice Up Your Work Space with Computer Desk Leaning Ladder Shelves

diy ladder shelf

As your most productive space, no wonder if you demand a good and eye catching decoration that is able to pump up your mood and energy during your work time. But it is totally understandable if you don’t want to have something which requires too much floor space. Plus, it prevents you from cluttering your own stuffs.

When you are in hurry because of your workload, and really need this DIY ladder shelf to be done as soon as possible, the good news is, it takes only approximately for five hours! Yes, and after that you can directly go swimming in the sea of works and deadlines.

Why making DIY ladder shelf can be so fast? It because the shelves which you are going to build are only 1 x boards, 1 x 6 for top shelf, 1 x 8 for the next shelf, followed by 1 x 10 and 1 x 12. for the bottom, we use two pieces of 1 x 8. You don’t need to tear out the piece of plywood. It as easy as cutting and enjoying the result.

A good preparation is a halfway through the finish line. So, make sure all of these required materials and appliances are ready to be used. This is the detail needs:

For the desk:

  • 1 x 8 boards with 8 feet long each
  • 1 x 6 boards with 31 inches long each
  • 1 x 3 boards with 8 feet long each
  • A quarter inch screws
  • A quarter inch nails
  • A quarter inch pocket hole screws
  • Wooden glue
  • 120 grit sandpaper

For the shelves:

  • 1 x 6 with 31 inches each
  • 1 x 8 with 31 inches each
  • 1 x 3 with 31 inches each
  • 1 x 3 with 6 and quarter inches each
  • 1 x 3 with 8 inches each
  • 1 x 3 with 15 and quarter inches each

For frame:

  • (2) 1 x 3 with 76 and quarter inches, clean cut it with parallel five degrees, long to short point size
  • (2) 1 x 3 with 32 and half inches

Check this out for the step by step!

Firstly, you have to cut all the board using compound miter saw. Make sure the size is same for every shelves and for the back. To ease your work, you can put a block board on that saw so the cut will be exactly similar. Set this board up beneath that cutter with one end butted up then you can saw it thoroughly and easily.

After all the cutting work is done, secondly, adjust the saw into the angle is becoming a half and 22 degrees. Some saw has default setting to be this angle, so you can continue the work with initial adjustment. Just in case your saw has different setting, you still can use any angle without facing troublesome in changing it.

Use the angle setting of your saw to pinch off one side of all the shelf piece. It will be better if you measure it first. If you don’t, that still possible to mark the saw on the spot which you want to place the board. Then, cut it. It makes fine touching on the corners and creating additional well designed ornament.

Thirdly, you need to cut the legs for bottom and top with five degrees angle each. Even though the angle is perfectly same, but will not stand parallel leaning the wall. To overcome this thing, you can take a mark from speed square to the five degrees angle at the top and then cut it off on the back with circular saw until the result is 2,5” area behind the legs’ back which is in square-shaped against the wall.

After that, it is the time to build the shelves. Nail each side and the bottom. For strengthening the result of DIY ladder shelf, you need to use wooden glue instead of only nails. To secure the bottom shelf, you can utilize pocket hole to converge it together.

Varnish, paint, or stain it with spray or liquid which is specially designed for wood material. When the stain is already well blended, wipe it with paper towel for better result.

Final step is assembling the DIY ladder shelf shelving unit! Make sure the framework is established first, so you have to attach the back frame into the legs. Lean the leg against the wall and clamp it in the right position so you can screw it on.

Your adorable computer desk leaning ladder shelves are ready to be placed on your work space. Fill it with your personal things so your working hour will feel more fun and less intense.

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5. On A Budget DIY Ladder Shelf Idea

ladder bookshelf ideas

The positive side of having DIY ladder shelf is, you can adjust it with your budget without compromising the quality. Moreover, in just $15, you can have new remodeling ladder to be adorable shelves. How it be any more fun?

As pre-emptive action to make sure the shelves will not fall down, better to fix it into the wall with L bracket technique on top of the shelf. You can add additional pads to prevent the tiles or ceramics of your floor are scratched by the shelves.

Simple materials which are useful for you on the process are three pieces of plywood board 2 x 4, a pallet, screws and nailgun, glue, white paint, danish oil. All of them only charges you roughly $15 but the result shelving unit can worth up to $400.

Try another one with DIY Bookshelf Pallet

Step 1: perpendicularly cut the ladder

Put the two vertical 2 x 4 plywood board and cut the first one into 80 inches. It is useful to ease your effort in searching the perfect angle. After that, you can lean it into the wall or any other flat surface. Make a decision on what is the best angle you need. If you are totally clueless on this part, just try on 10 degrees.

Saw the bottom and top shelves with similar angle so they will equal on each other. Stencil the 2 x 4 board into another 2 x 4 and square off them right on top of the table saw.

Step 2: establish the pole and another shelving support

Measure the vertical ladder and determine the quantity of shelves that you want. Prepare the other 2 x 4 boards on another edge and then cut it down in the centre. Now, you already have two pieces that can be your shelves support.

If you feel mixed up and don’t decide the size and the number of the shelves yet, that is okay. The ideal number is 5 to 6 shelves with the very bottom of the shelves is 8 inches. And the gap between one shelf and the other is around 16 inches. You can custom it based on your necessity.

Step 3: cut it down the support

Again, don’t forget to measure the exact size the depth of shelf based on your want. Simple trick to give you perfect support and strength is let it leans until it touches the wall. Don’t let it floating, especially if your plan is filling it with heavy stuff. Your priority must be on the power and durability of the shelves.

You will need to two strong supports with the size on the bottom is 14 inches and continued with 12 inches, 10, 8, and 6 inches.

Step 4: time for the pallet

Obtain pallet by cutting it around the end to support inside of the pallet. Expunge the boards with crowbar and hammer and remove the nails with grinder. Saw the boards on your own desired quantity to be the width, or you can just apply the ideal measurement which is 18 inches. For faster cutting, you need to use a stop block.

For the finish look, you can apply danish oil.

Step 5: hang the support of shelving unit

Put a piece of plywood board to be a jig to equalize the vertical ladder into the wall or any flat surface. The role of that jig is a basic solid foundation for your desired wall. Nail one perpendicular frame into that plywood to keep it square and ensure the 10 degrees angle cut becomes clean cut for the jig.

Then, form the self support into a line up and evaluate on whether or not they are already in similar overhang. Before screw and glue in a fix place, better to make a pre-drill in that place to make sure everything is okay and good to be seen. With the same way, repeat this method into the second perpendicular ladder.

Why it will take another second ladder? It because we want to establish a mirroring effect with the second one.

Step 6: coloring the shelving unit

For establishing the farm house style, you can paint your ladder to be fully off-white or another white palette. The options of paint are vary, it can be latex paint or spray. It just a matter of habit and personal preference but you don’t have to worry the result because all of them still can produce the high quality finishing touch.

To make it more everlasting and resistant to any destructive insects or termite, you need to apply more coats.

Step 7: assemble it into the whole shelving unit

At the moment when your vertical ladder pallet shelves are already well painted (make sure it is well dry too), now you can lay the upright on flat surface for easily hanging it. It begins with the bottom to ensure it is strong enough, straight, and square.

Put your screw gun and work into the top to maintain the initial form and prevent it from falling down. Tear up the pallet shelves whenever you think it is larger than it is supposed to be. Make sure everything is in the right place and perfect to be used.

Final step: make it as useful as possible!

Voila! Your adorable on budget DIY ladder shelf is ready to serve. Now, you can move and place it into wherever you want.

For the record, bear in mind to put some delight pads beneath the perpendicular to prevent any scratches or unintended cases that may break your floor. For the safety issue, you also can hang a “L bracket” construction into the wall and upright ladder to make sure none of them will be crashing down. Not to mention if you have kids or pets around your corner.

In a nutshell, beautify your room with practical furniture but having no spare budget to buy one, is totally possible. Turns out, it can be your own personal taste because you completely assembling it instead of only buying the ready one.

Makes this DIY ladder shelf project as a moment to do activity together among your family is more valuable than everything!



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