Monday, August 11, 2014

Space Saving Dorm Bookshelf

With less than a week before my daughter heads off to college, we have been gathering up our last few bits and pieces to make sure her new dorm room is organized, comfortable, and stylish.

She is quite lucky in that her dorm room is already updated and has nice floors, a large window and sturdy, modern, basic furnishings.
(You can see photos of it here.)

We noticed very early on, though, that one important item was missing - a bookshelf.
So we made plans to find or build one that could fit on top of her desk.

Wish I had noticed and bought that cute little dog.

I happened across this one for $30 while shopping at a local antiques shop.
To me it seemed like a great size, it was very sturdy and could be easily be painted if she didn't like the color.
But she was worried it was "too tall" so I sent another photo to give her a better idea of the size.

Obviously I could have been a supermodel...

or a toad.

Sadly, my daughter passed on this shelf, 
which would have been such an easy solution,
in lieu of building of our own.


Our plan was to build something about 8 inches deep, 2 feet wide and without a base so she could slide her laptop underneath it and take up less space on her actual desk.  

We also decided that it would be useful if each of the shelf spaces was exactly the size of 2 square cork tiles so the back of the shelf could do double duty as her bulletin board since wall space is so limited in a dorm room.

We bought this package of 4 cork tiles from Target for $6.79.

These are not a high quality cork tile but since we are using them almost like a 'wallpaper' on the back of the shelves they should hold up.

No special DIY tutorials for this project because I basically just had to wing it and figured stuff out as I went along.
I did have to take a couple of mulligans and there are some flaws but overall the project came out as planned.

Big power tools.

It's level!

Primed and painted

Cork tiles inserted

She's thinking about adding some decorative hooks on the side so she hang necklaces, too.
Like this:

She may even want to add some washi tape to the shelf edges or other cute details.


The other cool part is that we built the shelf with future use in mind.
If she decides to use it later in an apartment, she can easily remove the cork tiles and leave the back painted or add some cute decorative wallpaper and use it as a desktop shelf again.

She can also add a base shelf and some casters to make a rolling bookshelf.
Or a coffee bar.


I'm so excited to see how her dorm room comes together next week!

À la vie et à l'amour

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