I found this project on pinterest, and it led me back to the Shanty 2 Chic blog. These ladies are BUSY! Between the two of them they have 8 children, and they still manage to put together an inspirational and helpful blog and have perfectly decorated houses. Kudos to them. Lucky bitches. I have 8 loads of laundry waiting to be folded, and about 3 project half finished.
So here’s the picture that inspired the project:
Gorgeous, right? It’s absolutely perfect for my foyer. Because at the moment, my foyer looks like this:
It’s amazingly crappy and unwelcoming. You’ll notice the coat rack that is so buried under shit nobody ever uses that you can’t even tell it’s there. You’ll also notice a leaning baby gate, a reusable grocery bag full of mittens and hats, the alphabet train, and half of my dog. (She likes to be helpful)
You can only imagine my glee and delight at finding the tutorial on the Shanty 2 Chic blog. I looked at the materials list, and decided this project and I were meant for each other. So, being the naturally impulsive person I am, I headed straight for Home Depot.
Here’s what I purchased:
1 sheet of 4 x 8 oak plywood, 1/2″ thick ($39.95)
1 2 x 10 x 10 pine board ($8.95)
1 1 x 6 x 10 pine board ($2.36)
1 crown molding center block ($4.16 – SCORE!)
1 6′ long piece of base trim ($6.28)
2 pieces of thin trim to trim edges ($8.86)
1 Piece of chair rail to trim between shelf and planks ($6.25)
6 double hooks from Hobby Lobby ($3 each)
As she says in her tutorial, I had the helpful man at Home Depot cut my plywood. I’m trying to do this on a SUPER tight budget, so I only had enough secret squirrel money for 1 sheet. Therefore – had to make the most of it. He cut it as follows:
3 pieces @ 8″ wide
2 pieces @ 6″ wide
2 pieces @4″ wide
1 piece sadly cut to only 3″ wide because his sawing skills aren’t as precise as I had estimated.
So, yeah. I ended up with one weird piece. Oh well. This gives me enough linear feet of planks to go about 5′ up my wall in an area 61-1/2″ wide.
The first problem with this tutorial I found, was the proclamation that it only cost $100. Well, maybe for the plywood! But she used 5 different colors of stain, and those tiny things cost about $15 each. Here’s what I used instead:
Know what that is? That is every color stain my Mom had in her basement. BOOM. Saving Money!! The one with the green label ended up having chunks in it, so I only used the other 4.
What Shanty 2 Chic forgot to mention in her tutorial was how labor intensive it is to sand and stain wood. She glanced over it as if it happens all by itself, but it was actually a lot of work. I had to sand down all the edges of my planks to remove all of the splinters that looked like they could be life threatening. Then I had to sand the face of my planks, as it wasn’t quite absorbent enough for my liking. So, lots of elbow grease was needed, but I finally got them all stained. Here’s the stain in progress:
You’ll totally laugh, but before I could take my picture, I had to replace 2 burned out lightbulbs in my garage. Can you believe I have all the time in the world for these projects, but I left my garage dark and scary for like 4 months??
You’ll notice that one of the boards has 2 colors of stain on it – that’s my funny piece that wasn’t cut the right width. I knew it would have to be in a row by itself, and I didn’t want it to be one color all the way across.
Here’s a shot of my wood before I started the shelf:
This looked like it was almost tall enough, so I added one more row of 4″ planks to top it off. Then I built the shelf following her tutorial. Only when I built my shelf I had to crow bar it apart twice AFTER the wood glue dried because it wasn’t straight. I also pinched my shirt between the wood when I was nail gun-ing it, and had a good laugh when I realized I was kind of stuck. I’m AMAZING with power tools!
Here’s my final product:
BAM! How you like me now!? I couldn’t be more excited about how this turned out. We don’t have a closet on our main level, so this is going to be a super improvement. I mean…just look at my shitty foyer “before” picture. What you can’t see in this picture is that immediately off camera is the pile of shit that has to hang on those hooks. I was actually standing ON the pile while taking the picture.
Overall, I would definitely consider this a “do it yourself” project. I had to borrow a miter saw, a jig saw, a nail gun and a palm sander to get the job done. Maybe some day I’ll own my own “big girl” tools, but for now I’m just lucky to have neighbors and friends with tools!