Extra Storage Space to Your Home

man adjusting shelves

Homes seldom come equipped with adequate display or storage space. That's why bookcases and shelves are at the top of almost every home furnishing list.

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Prime considerations
You can easily find ready-made pieces. The trouble is, if they're well-made, they're usually expensive. Or if they're low-cost, they're probably not sturdy and durable. Ready-to-assemble furniture is another option, but it's difficult to find a bookcase or shelf that exactly meets your needs, fits your space and your home style, and still fits your budget.

Building your own bookcase or shelving is often the best solution. And it isn't difficult; if you've done home repairs or some remodeling, you've likely developed some of the woodworking skills to build your own pieces. You can easily develop the rest as you begin building. Along the way, you'll gain confidence and learn a new craft. Even more, you'll feel the satisfaction of doing the project yourself. Before you get started, though, some planning is necessary.

Here are some questions to consider about adding bookcases or shelves:

--What is the main purpose of the piece?

--What will best meet that purpose, a bookcase or simple shelving? A quick-to-build, low-cost utility piece or one of furniture quality?

--Where will it go?

--What size and style do you want?

--What material will work best?

--Should it be painted or naturally finished? Other factors also influence your final decision on what to build.

Work space: With a basement, garage, or spare room available as a workshop, you can build large projects. A smaller space limits you to smaller projects or those that can be constructed as subassemblies or from precut parts.

Do-it-yourself skills: If you're new to woodworking, start with simpler projects, then move on to larger, more involved ones. All the skills you need to build the projects on this site are described with clear, step-by-step instructions. Use the right tool, in the right way, for the right job. And above all, work safely.

Budget: Buying tools adds to the project's cost, but the tools become an investment that can save time and money on future projects and repairs.

Time: It doesn't pay to rush. If you're pressed for time, build your projects in stages. A checklist provided with each project gives you a clear idea of the time, as well as the skills and tools, needed to complete it. A complete bill of materials also accompanies each project.


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