Introduction: Floating Spice Shelves

Picture of Floating Spice Shelves

I built these walnut spice shelves to make use of a small bit of wall between our kitchen nook and kitchen doorway. The 4 shelves are cut from a single piece of walnut, then each shelf is recessed with a router. The shelves are attached to the wall with pocket holes.

Supplies:

Shelf wood (I used walnut)

Scrap wood for the routing jig (I used some leftover baltic birch and MDF)

Table saw

Router with 3/4 inch straight router bit

Kreg Mini Pocket-Hole Jig

1/8 inch toggle bolts (for drywall)

Pocket-hole screws (for studs)

Arm-R-Seal Urethane Topcoat

Step 1: Shelf Blanks and Routing Jig

Picture of Shelf Blanks and Routing Jig

Shelf Blanks

I cut four blocks of wood from a single piece of walnut. Each block is 17 inches long, 1.25 inches tall, and 3 inches wide. Depending on your space, you could use any variety of wood, cut to a dimension that best meets your need.

Routing Jig

I framed up the routing jig with 3/4 inch baltic birch strips that were 4 inches wide. I used pocket hole joints for this. On top, I added strips of MDF for the router's base plate to ride against. With careful measurements I set the guides to leave the sides of the shelf 3/4 inches thick, and the front edge 1/2 inch thick. The placement of these guides depends on the router you are using, and the dimensions of your shelves.

-Because of the depth of the recess (1 inch), a flush trim router bit or guide bushing seemed more challenging than using the base plate as a guide.

I added wood beneath the jig so that the top surface would be flush with the shelf blank when sitting on a work bench.

I clamped the jig to my work bench and shimmed in the shelf blanks so that they would not move.

I routed each shelf in four layers, removing a depth of .25 inches each time. The total depth is 1 inch. I stopped regularly to vacuum, as the router is removing a lot of wood.

Step 2: Pocket Holes

Picture of Pocket Holes

On scrap wood, I experimented with the placement of the Kreg Jig. I wanted the holes centered left and right, and as centered as possible up and down. The set up instructions that come with this jig aren't very accurate, so I find some experimenting is important for perfect holes.

I set up the stop collar on the drill bit so that the 1/8 inch tip of the stepped drill bit barely came out the back of the shelves. This ensured that the bolts wouldn't rip out the back once installed.

Step 3: Finish and Install

Picture of Finish and Install

I sanded the shelves with 220 grit sandpaper, then used General Finishes Arm-R-Seal Satin. I find the Arm-R-Seal is easy to use, and looks great. I applied 3 coats, sanding with steal wool between coats.

I was able to align my shelves so that one side could be screwed directly into a stud. I used the Kreg pocket-hole screws for these. The other side was not on a stud, so I used the 1/8inch toggle bolts into the drywall. For spices, these shelves are plenty strong, and would be strong enough with just toggle bolts in drywall only.

Step 4: Bonus

Picture of Bonus

With some of the leftover walnut, I made a matching kitchen spoon.

Comments

seamster (author)2015-03-19

These shelves are gorgeous. I need to make some just like yours!

And a side note, this is the perfect way to do an after-the-fact instructable! Excellently done on the documentation. Hope we see more from you soon. :)

ashleyjlong (author)2015-03-03

Very attractive final product! Thanks for sharing!

tomatoskins (author)2015-03-02

Those shelves look amazing! I think I'll make some in the future when I can.

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Bio: Teacher. Climber. Craftsman.
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