I have probably made hundreds of these since I saw the first one at an arts and crafts show in Austin, Texas. They are literally all over my house, my in-laws all have some, most of my neighbors have a few...... I have given them as gifts to lots and lots of people. They are really popular.
This is a low cost project, but there is a bit of work involved. Set aside a few hours and make a few of them, they look great if you make a few in different lengths and stagger them on a wall.
If you want a few, but don't want to make them you can of course visit my Etsy shop at http://www.etsy.com/shop/HoodWoodWork.
Step 1: Get some Crown Molding and cut it
If you intend to paint it, as I do this one then you can use crown molding that is already painted.... as in you can recycle some.
Ok this is the only slightly difficult part of this project, but hopefully I can explain in words and pictures a super easy way to cut this crown.
You will start by cutting a 45 degree angle on each end of your crown molding, but you must do this with the crown held at an angle.
I use a cheap miter box, I suggest you do the same. My miter box isn't quite tall enough for this piece of crown so i slid in a piece of plywood.
Place the crown upside down in the box, as in the top edge is on the bottom. make sure the vertical and horizontal edges sit flat on the bottom and side of the miter box.
Now make a 45 degree cut on each end right at the end to avoid wasting your crown molding, once you have done that you are going to measure over 4" and cut a 90 degree cut at each end.......this is how far your shelf will stick out from the wall, make it longer if you want a deeper shelf.
Then it is back to to the miter box, make another 45 degree cut, measure 16 inches along the top edge (which is held at the bottom of the miter box) and cut your last 45 degree cut. This is the length of your shelf, if you want a longer one cut it longer.