Adding Open Shelving in the Dining Room

Adding Open Shelving in the Dining Room: Part One, the Mechanics

There's nothing like the clean look of open shelves with beautiful white dishware in a kitchen.  Not only does it provide storage space, but it also serves as decor.

The kitchen in our house already feels tight on cabinet space, so when we started to redo our kitchen,  the thought of swapping out cabinets for open shelving sounded like a decrease in storage space for us.

So instead, we decided to add some high open, rustic shelves to the dining room (really more like an eat in kitchen or nook area, but since the dining room has turned into a playroom, a dining room it is!).

Here's a before pic with the small white shelves I originally installed.  They are definitely too small for the space.  They left the walls looking bare and didn't hold very much.

After some searches online and on pinterest, we decided to do something a little more "rustic", kind of like the samples below.

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So off to Home Depot I went (seriously they should have a punch card for frequent visitors or something).

I purchased two 2x10s and had them cut them to 6' lengths for me.  Then I shopped around for some brackets and found these 8" x 10" brackets.  I purchased 8, not sure how many supports I would need for dish ware.

The next step was figuring out where the studs were.  I recommend using a stud finder, but if you don't have one, look for outlets or switches.  Generally they are located on one side of a stud.

I drilled the bottom hole screw and one top hole screw into the stud and the other top screw into drywall.  Make sure to anchor your shelves into a stud if you're going to put anything heavy on them!

Make sure your shelves are even - especially with each other, otherwise it will very noticeable that they're not, especially if you hang more than one.

After the brackets are up and the shelves are even, you can leave the wood their natural color or, like in my case, sand and stain them to your desired color.  I decided to stain them the same medium brown I used on our kitchen cabinets - Early American.

Here's a shot pre-stain.

And... Presto!  (I wish projects were as simple as just saying presto).  You now have open shelving!


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