Fifteen Minute Shelf

Psst: Sometimes I totally forget that I blog. This week was one of those times. Someone will ask about something and then I’m all, “Oh. Right. The blog.”

I made a shelf. In fifteen minutes! And it was free!

Remember this mirror in my entryway?


I wanted to put a little ledge underneath it…just a narrow little spot to drop keys basically. Not a place to pile up junk by the front door!

I went to the garage to survey my wood scraps after I got the boys started on their spelling lessons. I nearly had the thing built by time they finished writing their words and was just waiting on caulk to dry by time they finished their respective word puzzles.

Here’s what I used…

scrap wood

…a piece of the molding from the top of the board and batten in the guest bathroom, a leftover piece of baseboard from the master bathroom, and a piece of scrap wood from when we converted the boys’ beds from a tri-bunk to three separate beds since the ceilings are much lower in this house.

triple bunk

How cute were they?!

I used the molding as my shelf support, and then I stacked the baseboard on top of that for extra detail and support, and then I put the 1×6 on top of that.

two pieces stacked 3 stacked

I used wood glue in combination with E6000 since I wasn’t convinced the wood glue alone would work on primed wood.


An added benefit of the E6000 was that I didn’t have to wait for the wood glue to dry before I could caulk my cracks and seams. The E6000 grabs and holds almost immediately.

cracks fill cracks


So there it was. Totally built in under fifteen minutes. Right in the classroom while the boys worked. I love projects like this. A much better way to spend my few minutes of down time in between lessons than Facebook! Although, let’s be honest, I really should use these moments to do some pushups and jumping jacks. Or burpees. Okay, let’s not get carried away here.

Obviously it still needed to be painted, and I had to wait for the caulk to dry in order to do that. While I was waiting, I decided to smear some joint compound on the end where the wood was cut just to make it extra smooth instead of showing the grain. That would also make it appear more like one piece of wood than three pieces stacked. If I had been working with raw wood, I would have used wood filler. Since these pieces were primed already, joint compound seemed like the better option.

I let the caulk and joint compound dry overnight before I painted the shelf, mostly just because I didn’t have time to come back to it, but caulk is usually dry in a few hours. (Read the tube to be sure when you can paint it.)

shelf end


ikea plant divided tray

There’s just a plant and a tiny divided tray from Home Goods that holds keys, chapstick, and small items that need to be returned to their rightful owners. No one in this house wears bows. Well, I occasionally do. But very rarely.


Sometimes even on my clothes.


I might be having a mid-life crisis.


I’ll leave you with all these awesome shots of the shelf.

molding shelf bottom shelf end of shelf mirror and shelf entry corner entryway shelf mirror


Tell me what you think