I'm quite happy with that fact that the first piece of furniture I built is a bookshelf. I wanted to make something large enough to keep all my books, and stylish at the same time. I like somewhat futuristic and organic designs with plenty curved lines, and you can see that in this shelf. Generally the aim was to make it look as if it was a part of the wall, or came out of the wall.
It's really a relatively easy project, not much work is needed, although some precision will be useful. The size of the bookshelf can vary, in my case it is 2m wide and, well, room-high (2.70m). With 8 shelves this gives me 16m of book-space. It won't be a problem to make it wider or narrower though, or changing the height. Also the shape can be changed relatively easily - you don't have to have the curved lines, just use your imagination.
- 3 boards 2700x120x18
- 2 or more MDF boards 2700x1400x18
- 3 long screws with studs
- Paint and varnish
The single downside of this design is that you won't be able to move the shelf elsewhere easily - it will be screwed to the wall. Though it's only three screws that hold it, so moving it is not impossible and will not involve demolishing your walls too much.
Step 1: Preparing the vertical boards 1
First, cut out the shape of the boards - both the vertical and horizontal. The three vertical boards should be all exactly the same, but the actual shelves can vary. I made the bottom shelves a a bit wider to hold my oversize books and albums, and the top narrower for smaller books and paperbacks. If you want to do that, simply cut the same lenght and play with the width. On my bookshelf the sizes vary from 35cm at the bottom-most shelf to 22 for the top-most. Depending on what sizes you settle for (and how many shelves you plan to have), you might need to buy extra MDF boards. Also, I made the mistake of using chipboards rather than buying proper plywood or MDFs - although this meant I saved some money, it compromised the looks a bit - especially the edges are, well, chipped. So I would recommend using more expensive but better looking boards.
The whole trick is in cutting nice curves - the image shows how mine are done. The horizontal boards are generally straight - only the endings (40cm from the edge) are curved.