h2g2 DIY: Tree Shelf

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A fun DIY project.

Tree Shelf

Tree shelf in progress.

In accordance to the topic of the mural I did for my son's nursery I decided to also build a shelf which looks like a tree. I found quite a lot of pictures of tree shaped shelves on Google, but had to think about what I could actually make myself. After quite a while of thinking and drawing sketches I decided to build something like an ordinary shelf with a 'facade' in front of it.

I started out with three boards of 1 meter length for the branches and one long board of 2 meters for the trunk, because I didn't want to hang the whole thing on the wall. I cut a piece as long as the width of the trunk off each of the shorter boards, then screwed the longer boards on the trunk with steel fittings – in retrospect I should maybe have done it differently because they don't look very good. I made this irregularly to give it a more branch-like look, and put the short pieces between them so the 'facade' would get more support.

Then I cut out the actual tree shape from plywood. This took quite some time because I did it with a jigsaw on the balcony and I did it in winter, which means I had to wait for good weather. I decided for a quite curly, non-realistic design because it seemed to be easier to do than attempting a realistic look.

The tree shape was then attached to the shelf with small silver screws which are visible on the front. It just seemed easier and more durable than trying to hide them. From some of the curls I hung little LED lanterns which I bought at Ikea. They sold them as Christmas decoration. I think they give the shelf a more elvish look. The whole shelf is fixed on the wall with one screw at the top, by the way, and has a small pedestal at the bottom. So the weight is carried by the tree trunk, but the screw takes care that it stays where it should.

I thought about painting the shelf in a darker color, but then just left it as it is. I'm still thinking about how to best hide the steel fittings on the lowest shelf and I may attach a reading lamp at the bottom, because there's a sofa below the tree.

Tree shelf with elegant dog.

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