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DIY Ladder Shelves

DIY Projects Oct 20, 2014

DIY Ladder Shelves

While in Japan recently I was really inspired by the concept of the beauty alcoves that I saw everywhere we went, styled corners consisting of drawers or shelves where people displayed their favourite collections and items.

I think traditional Japanese houses have always had them for displaying art (called Tokonoma) but what I saw was mostly a little more modern and spontaneous than those. The Airbnb we stayed in had one. The doctor’s surgery we visited had one (his was a collection of porcelain owls… random but very cute). And the Ryokan we visited had one in the corner. I loved that it shows a pride in your space and a touch of sentimentality, as well as an admirable ability to keep that area tidy! After I finished (somewhat) with all the DIY projects at the studio (including this ladder wardrobe), I started thinking about how I could update our apartment, and integrate the concept of the beauty alcove – specifically as a place to put all the things I collected on my travels. I decided to create a set of ladder shelves for this purpose, they cost about $10 to make and packed such a punch in our small (v v small)  space!

 

What’s on my shelves

Top: fish salt shaker from Peru

Second: Green vases from Shanghai, little clay house from Yangshou, porcelain cat pig from Hanoi, porcelain clogs from Munich, heart shaped porcelain jewellery box from Hong Kong

Third: Tea pot from Bali, Lumira travel candle, pink elephant from Thailand, stone and porcelain elephants from Sri Lanka

Fourth: DIY terrarium, Mochilla bag from Crystal Cove Collective, a few Lonely Planets

Fifth: Pink raffia box from Sardinia, Ottolenghi cook books, Glass jars from Sri Lanka

 

For the pine wood planks, cut to incremental sizes, I went for two at 1.2m (48 inches), then 1m (40 inches), 80cm (30 inches) and 60cm (23 inches) for the top.

1

Stand your ladder up where you want it to sit in your house. It's easier to be sure of the location before you build it.

2

Slide all the pine planks onto the cross beams of the ladder, making sure to stagger the size as you go up.

 

3

Press the L-brackets up against the ladder cross beam and the plank.

 

4

Use your drill to secure the L-brackets.

 

Voila!

 

Fill your shelves up with your favourite pieces. My boyfriend’s mum was visiting while I was doing this and helped me style the shelves a bit, I learnt so much about placement of items in terms of colour, depth and symmetry. They looked wayyy better than when I randomly threw things onto them. 🙂

 

Dreaming of all the other things I can make out of these ladders… thoughts?

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