Making a DIY Shoe Rack (An Easy Woodworking Project)

Step 1

The first section I tackled was putting together what would become the shelves. These were primarily made up of sections of 1x2s, so I measured out my lengths, marked my wood, and started cutting down sections using a jigsaw.

Step 2

I grabbed some corner clamps to dry-fit each set of pieces into a framed shape, to make sure that everything looked and felt dimension-wise how I wanted it and give me the opportunity to make changes if I wanted to. Then I added some Titebond Quick and Thick to each joint and clamped it together tightly. I repeated this with each shelf. The main point of this first step was tacking the basic frame into place for a base to get the slats in. The slats will build up the sturdiness.

Step 3

Next, I needed to add a ledge for my slats to sit on top of. I cut 1x1s down on the bandsaw to fit within each frame. Once I knew I had the length right, I cut a bunch of them and started gluing with Titebond III wood glue.

Step 4

I got all four shelves glued up and let them dry overnight before getting started on the first horizontal slats using some more 1×2 poplar. I repeated all of this four times over and once again, let it all dry. Each shelf got three 1×1 horizontal slats.

Step 5

Then I grabbed some sawdust and mixed it with wood glue to make wood putty. There were a few gaps that needed to be filled before I sanded everything down. I sanded first with an 80 grit and then a second time with the 150 grit.

Step 6

To attach the shelves to the outside piece, I went into the lip on the bottom of each shelf piece with a two-inch drywall screw, leaving the screw head in a hidden spot and the outside of the shelf looking completely unmarked.

I got pilot holes into the undersides of each shelf using a countersink bit on my Makita power drill. I put four holes in each shelf. From there, it was a matter of lining everything up and screwing it into place using the impact driver. We also added a line or two of wood glue to each seam for some added rigidity.

Step 7

To visually balance the top out, I wanted to trim the sides’ overhang down to be two inches. I was able to do this really easily with my Makita circular saw. Then the sides got a good sanding as well. Finally, I went in and blew off all the sawdust to get the wood nice and clean before paint.

Step 8

In a last-second change of heart, I decided I did want to add some quick and simple feet to this to help it sit better on an uneven floor. I just sketched out what I wanted and then cut it away with a jigsaw.

Step 9

Then it was painting time! I started with a sand-able filler primer. I had found some extra trim paint from the front hallway of my house, so it seemed like a natural choice to paint the shoe rack that color. I started by cutting in the edges, and then I used my paint roller everywhere it was feasible to do so because rolling the paint on, in my opinion, gives a much more desirable texture to the paint. This took about two to three coats in some areas to be as even as I wanted it to be.

The Final Result

This build was a sure success, and it eliminated the mountain of shoes in my entryway! Much needed.

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