Poplar Shelves

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Project by David Regan posted 03-19-2013 12:32 PM 1341 views 1 time favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

A friend recently came to me asking if I could make some Kitchen shelves for her. Her place is a small NYC apartment, there was very little room to work with, which provided for a couple challenges, restricting me in width, depth, and also her requests for it’s functionality. (Note the pictures here are not from where it is made for)

The shelves are all Poplar, except for the lip on the front of each shelf, which is Red Oak. A really basic design, just dedos run through the sides, with rabbeted edges on the shelves. The wider notches for the lip to fit were just cut out with a chisel.

However given the space restrictions, she wanted the ability to move some shelves around, and furthermore, to have the option of removing the lip. To that end, there are additional dedos, and notches cut, so the 2nd and 4th shelves can be reconfigured. The pins holding the lip on are glued in on the 1st/3rd/5th shelves, but on the two moveable shelves, those can physically be pulled off, leaving a shelf with no lip for overhanding objects. Its not very elegant, and I wish I had come up with something a bit more inventive, (embedded magnets…????) but it works, so for a first pass at this sort of thing I guess it’s alright.

I also had the issue with making these shelves be essentially flush to her wall, in order to fit in the small space available in her kitchen, however the baseboard molding which protrudes about 1” from flush with the wall prevented this. So I had to cut a notch in the bottom of my side-boards, and then come up with a sort of custom way to frame this cut, both to make it not look terrible, and be the full support for the bottom. Shown in the 4th picture.

All in all another great learning project, can’t wait to get on to the next one!

2 comments so far

View Josh's profile


1234 posts in 2806 days

#1 posted 03-19-2013 04:19 PM

Get at that woodworking!

-- Tree, wood, and box lover from Pennsylvania

View woodman88's profile


144 posts in 2885 days

#2 posted 03-19-2013 08:37 PM

definately a different approach to the shelves. Haven’t seen them done like that before HMMMM

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