It’s no secret that furniture, even simple ones, are overpriced. Is there no way to go around it? Well, you can try looking for sales or… make them yourself! After all, garages usually doesn’t have to use intricate furniture. In fact, the room often uses one of the simplest furniture to make – shelves! If you are down to make the shelves yourself, here are a few ways to DIY it below.



The Materials

Depending on the type of shelf you are making, different materials will be needed. However, we can at least decide what we can use for the ledge and the support. The material needs to be considered because it will decide how much money the shelf will need and the quality of the shelves themselves. There are three most obvious choices:

1. Plastic

Plastic is possibly the lightest and cheapest material among the tree. However, it may be difficult to find it in sheet form. Besides, the sheet form is often too feeble for shelves. So, if you are planning to use plastic, then it’s better to use the storage boxes and put them on your shelves to make them organized, rather than using them as the shelf themselves.

2. Wood

If we are talking about a material that is easy to measure, cut, and shape into your needs, then wood is the one. It can be used for both the ledge and the support, which makes wood the most versatile material among the three. It’s also easy to both buy and scavenge wood. However, if not taken care of properly, termites will devour it in after a few months. So, make sure to coat it with some protection before using it for good.


3. Metal

Metal is the sturdiest material on the list. However, it’s hard to scavenge for the right size and shape. If you are buying new ones, then it may be possible to get them cut to the right sizes in the store. That means you must have the blueprint of your shelf-to-be before going into the store, though.

These three materials are the easiest ones to find for DIYs. Of course, if you have other types of material, you can try to use them. For example, paracords can be used for holding the items on the shelf safe.

Types of Shelf

Depending on the shelf type, it’s possible to use different types of materials at once. So, feel free to use your creativity in the design. However, before we decide the materials we will use, let’s see the shelf types:

1. Solid, Classic Shelf

If you want to go easy (and somewhat uncreative), then you can try to make the classic shelf. This shelf can use either or both wood and metal. Overall, classic shelves are the most versatile choice because we can put the items straight-away or uses boxes as organizers.

However, getting around the items may be difficult because you have to search which level or organizer your item was stored.

2. Hanging Racks

It’s not exactly a shelf, but it’s easier to make compared to a whole set of a classic shelf. After all, we only need to secure the ledge to the wall (or any surface you plan to want to have shelves on) to make a rack. If you don’t have a lot of items to put on, racks will serves your needs without consuming too much time.

3. Ceiling Shelf

What if you have more items than your wall allowed you to store on? If so, it’s possible to make overhead shelves on the ceiling. The concept is basically the same as hanging racks. However, instead of L brackets or paracords, ceiling shelves use legs to hold up.

In other words, it is basically an upside-down table secured to the ceiling. Perfect for storing items that are not used often such as suitcases, spare wheels, and many others.

Which type of shelf are you planning to make? Depending on the size and the items you are planning to put on them, consider the strength of your materials. Heavier items are best with durable items, but it’s ok to use lower quality material if your item is not too heavy to possibly break it.

How to Make Shelf That Suits Your Needs

First of all, not everybody is lucky to get the perfect materials all the time, especially when they scavenge instead of buying them. So, to get the goal done, we need to get creative with what we can gather. For example, huge PVC pipes can be used as hanging racks by cutting them to a good length, fixing them to the wall opening facing out, then put your stuff there.

Another example of making do is by using a bed frame for a spray paint shelf. Just fix the frame to the wall (the down-side facing you) then add the ledges and suspenders. There you have it – a simple spray paint shelf! It’s perfect for those who have a lot of paint collection as it allows us to see the color selection and pick from it easily.

Like how we can get creative with the materials, we can get creative with the shape of our shelf as well. After all, not everybody need full shelves nor does racks are accommodating enough for some people. So, playing with the design to fulfill your needs is totally fine.

But how do we mix up the design? Well, there are existing designs that don’t follow the three ceiling types exactly but may suit you better. For example, if you only need a place to put and organizer and one or two small items, a double-decker may be a good choice for you. If you have a lot of tools that need to be accessed as fast as possible, then consider making hanging storage and use the shelves for other items instead.

Shelves are one of the easiest furniture to DIY. The materials can be scavenged or bought for cheap, which makes DIY garage shelves more economically-friendly compared to buying a new one altogether. Plus, since you are making the shelves yourself, it’s easier to make them the perfect size for the space you have.


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