Feb 21, 2011

Not Your Ordinary Shelf!

It has been a busy weekend though not much on my To Do list was accomplished due to the rapid change in weather...spring is gone again - insert tears and lots of boo hoo's.  Oh well - I kept the DIY party inside and focused on my office which was the last thing I was looking forward to.

My office project started when I came across these hollow door shelves the Britt from Gus and Lula blogged about (Check it out here and a wiki version here).  My original plan was to put a huge long mirror over my desk...epic fail with that one due to hollow wall and random wall studs.  I had already painted and built my hollow door desk (I lost the pics on that project but plan to blog about it once they are found!) and thought the next best solution would be a nice long shelf running the whole length of the desk.  Indeed, a perfect addition to my office!  My mind immediately jumped to the hollow door shelves for 3 reasons.

1. We have plenty of hollow doors hangin' around!
2. It just so happens the shelves would be exactly the same length as our door...hello!
3. It is FREE!!

My dad did me a great favor by zipping these old doors with my Papas old saw.  That took a lot of doin' as my Dad's garage is stuffed full of all sorts of drag racing paraphernalia.  Oh - shameless plug alert!!  If you happen to also be into drag racing racing you can check out his site here!   Anyway - back to the door...

Once it was zipped down to teo 9inch shelves the real fun began!  In case you are wondering here is what the inside of the door looked like:

Save your self some time and bloody knuckles by knocking those little shim things out with a hammer.  Of course, I didn't do that until my knuckles were already scraped up - Live and Learn!!   You will then have a huge pile of  wood shims and wonder to yourself "what can I do to re purpose these?"  Since I had no immediate ideas I put them aside for later.

Here is where my floating shelves idea refused to take off.  I decided instead of sanding and painting and going with he whole white thang that I would mix it up and use some fabric.  Not just ANY fabric...my cutie fabric from the last chair upholstery makeover - you can read all about it here.  After a bit of cutting (my last big remnant of this fabric...boo) and ironing I was ready to attach the fabric to the wood.  You can do this any number of ways but I went with stapling and Liquid Nails.  I didn't have any spray adhesive but I am guessing that would have been the easiest to work with.  With only Liquid Nails on hand I first Googled to see if it could be used for a fabric to wood application and, wonder upon wonders, I found this nifty little guide.  Check it out here.  You just put in the room of the house you are working in and which material and it pops out with which Liquid Nails product you could use.

 I basically stapled anywhere I could that wouldn't show and then glued down the rest.  Make sure to pull your fabric nice and tight so it doesn't sag  later.  Some of the outside staples shown were there only temporarily to hold the fabric to the wood while the glue was drying. 

I was still on the floating shelf idea so I went ahead marking my wall for studs (use a long strip of tape so you don't have to keep finding them later).  Then hold your cut down 2x4 over the studs level so you can mark where to pre-drill your holes.  The hollow part of the shelf will slide over this 2x4, AKA ledge, so there is no need for it to be pretty. 

Once I got the ledge up on the wall I realized it was WAY WAY too narrow to be able to support the length of this shelf so here is where plan B kicked into action.  For the record, Britt at Gus and Lula made much shorter shelves that would be able to hold more weight and all her cute glassware.  I knew right away these would not be able to hold my magazines and office supplies. If you have smaller shelves and maybe a deeper 2x4 ledge then go forth, my friend, and triumph.  For me...no more floating shelves...I had to use brackets.

Since brackets were the new plan I also had to cut down the shelf due to a lack of studs on one end - my office backs up to the bathroom which has a medicine cabinet on that wall.  Anywho - I cut down the shelf, reattached the fabric, and used the ledge that was already cut down to fill the hollow door so it would be steady throughout...here is where I wish I had planned everything out prior so I didn't take out those shim thingys in the beginning.  Oh well...

So here is how it all turned out once I got the brackets to work with me...those were a whole other story I am way too fragile still to relive.  Let me just say the bracket hanging induced me to a fit of rage with tears to follow...not my finest moment and a great reminder to not DIY on an empty stomach.  I believe I was suffering from a fit of hypoglycemia but it may as well have been a full out freak out!  Glad to be back on track!!  Oh, here are the pics pre cutting down of the shelf and of the holes left all over my wall due to my madness:

Considering my office looked like this before I think I was moving up in terms of being organized:

Really terrible.  I have always been a VERY organized person but with the construction and constant projects my office became a crazy place for random bits...similar to my basement...hmmm.  Maybe I am not as organized as I once was...or thought I was!  Here is what it looks like now...

Ok - so it isn't exactly organized.  So it isn't exactly the right paint color (another fiasco).   I still have that giant buffet in my office that has yet to be dealt with...  Overall, it is not a shining example of what  I wish my office to be one day.  But here on Walnut Avenue everything goes in real time.  I curse those bliggity blogs that make me feel like they must have had a little shop of elves to help them with all the projects they managed to accomplish in a weekend.  I have no elves...  Just me in a state of crazy when I can't manage to hang a bracket!  You can tell by the photos above that Bubba was in a weird state of crazy too!  Her green eyes are showing...or perhaps she is green with envy from what we wish our office DID look like...

I WILL HAVE THIS OFFICE...just not today.  Regardless of the whole office project no yet done at least I finished a shelf ...it may only be one shelf but it is certainly a CUTE shelf!

What did you guys do this weekend?  Have some inspirational pics for me regarding where it is you work from?  Please fell free to email or paste a link in the comments section of your office photos!

Thanks for checking in!

To see where and with whom I am canoodling with in Bloggy Land this week please click here!!  So much talent at the linky parties!!
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