Last year I decided my Son needed some shelves in his room. But being the Geek that I am, I couldn’t just make regular shelves, that would be too easy…
I saw some shelves on the Internet that someone had made and thought “I can do better”. The ones I saw were the same basic shape, but they were the entire wrong color – they were BROWN. The bricks in Super Mario Brothers are BRICK colored, not Brown. Sheesh, if you are going to Geek out, GET IT RIGHT!!
So as usual, I sketched up some plans:
I would make 3 shelves, made up of 4 “blocks” each. They are 12 inches tall, 48 inches long and 8 inches deep. MDF woud be just fine for these, also cost effective. First thing I needed to do was fire up the Nintendo and get a screen shot:
What? Doesn’t everyone still have a Nintendo hooked up to a TV in their house? You don’t? Why not?
With this and a search through Google images, I Photoshopped up some templates to actual size of 12 inches by 12 inches:
I took these to the store and matched up some paint chips.
I got some MDF and cut it all with a circular saw, a straight edge, a lot of time and even more patience. Oh and a VAST amount of sawdust, that’s why I cut MDF outside:
The top picture is all of the doors and dividers. The bottom one is all the tops/bottoms and backs. Yep, the backs were the same thing to make them beefier and sturdier.
I broke out the makeshift tables, the can of BRICK colored paint, and a 6 year-old to help me paint them:
He did an awesome job while I stood around and stared at the wall. Over the course of the next couple of weeks, we got all the pieces painted with the Brick color. There were a LOT of pieces to paint. They were all over the place:
Jumping ahead… here’s all the pieces of one shelf painted and dry fit together just to see what it will look like:
Now came the details. Just for the record… I HATE BLUE PAINTERS TAPE! It really sucks. Paint always gets under it. It’s garbage. I use Frog Tape for painting. WOW, does this stuff work!
I took the template of the question marks and taped off the areas to paint the shadows first. Yes, it took a long time. Longer than you are thinking:
But when the tape is peeled off… LOOK AT THOSE CRISP LINES! You don’t get that from the garbage blue tape, do ya? Nope:
Then I had to tape off for the tan color. At this point, I was getting better at taping, so this took a shorter time than the black did:
Here’s the question mark doors all painted:
Here are all of the dividers and the blank blocks all painted:
Now came the crazy taping! The 12 inch x 48 inch backs with the brick lines. This took a while to tape. Times 3, remember?:
I got the 6 year-old child labor going again on this one. Notice the tongue… That means he’s concentrating, or something:
Here’s all the backs painted:
Jump ahead, again… The shelves are together with dowels because I didn’t want to see any fasteners on the outside. Yes, I scraped off the paint from the areas where the glue and dowels were going, I’m not a goober :) Well, not much of one, anyway. Here’s shelf #1:
Here’s shelf #2:
And lastly, but not leastly, #3:
The question marks and blank “blocks” are doors. Did I mention they are doors? No? Yeah, they are doors. That open. The hinges are mortised in. The doors are held closed with those cool spring-loaded magnetic closures because I didn’t want handles on the outside to ruin the “block” effect:
Here’s the back of one of them. I’m installing them on the wall using a “French Cleat”. I painted the cleat and some 3/4 inch x 3/4 inch wood the same blue color as the wall so it would blend in. The cleats are glued and screwed on, a LOT. These things are heavy. The wood around the back isn’t glued on, just held on with brads because they just make up the gap for the cleat:
Here are the Cleats on the wall with lag screws into the studs. My Son had fun being the “Vacuum Guy” while I drilled the holes:
FINALLY!!! After way too many months, they are on the wall. Things just kept cropping up. This just isn’t a project you can work on a little here and a little there because there are 3 times the parts for everything! After I put in the bottom one, I showed it to my Wife, then sat my Son on the shelf to show her it can take the weight:
Remember those doors I wrote about up there? Yeah, here they are open:
Okay, let me get this out right now… NO, I will NOT make you some. I already had to field that question from too many people. No.
I have to remind myself to think a little bit smaller for the next thing I’m doing. Whatever that will be. These things took forever. But they are pretty cool, huh? My Son thinks I’m awesome.