Okay people, this DIY has a drill involved, but remember, drills just make holes lol. I know the minute you see a power tool, it’s like “welp, I won’t be doing this!” but trust me, a screw driver and a thick screw will suffice! Now come on grandma, let’s get started. This is a twofer project because not only do I show you how to make the simplest shelf ever, but also how to make a cute wood peg for it to hang on. You’ll thank me later for the double assignment!
- drill + bits
- sanding sponge (optional)
- wall anchor
- cup hook screw (the one shaped like a question mark)
- upholstery thread
- scrap piece of wood
- (1) 12″ round dowel (1/2″ thickness)
- (1) piece of twine measuring 48″
- (1) piece of wood at 6″ x 3.5″ (you can use whatever size you like but will need more twine if you go bigger and less if smaller)
- (1) 2″ screw
- If you don’t have a drill, no worries. It’ll take you a little longer, but using a screw and screw driver to make the holes will work just fine!
/ the peg /
Use a pencil to mark how long you want your peg to be. Mine is just over 1.5″. You’ll need your clamp to hold your dowel down as you hacksaw it to your pencil line.
Use your sand block (or paper) to soften the raw edge you just cut. Stand your dowel piece on each side to see which side is the flatest (you’ll want that end to be against the wall). Once you’ve figured it out, mark the middle of that end with your pencil and grab your cup hook screw.
Screw the entire cup hook screw into the dowel as straight as you can. This will make it so much easier to insert the flat end of your cut screw – – no worries, we’re getting there.
Using your clamp and hacksaw again, it’s now time to cut your long 2″ screw. You’ll need that scrap piece of wood to lay it on because if you’re going it on a counter top like me, you don’t want the head of the screw digging into your granite. Lay the scrap wood on the counter, the head end of the screw on the wood and clamp it and tightly as you can, leaving most of the thread end available to cut off. Now, get to it. It will take a bit longer because you’re cutting a piece of steel. You may get a light whiff of something burning while doing this (no seriously, lol) but just slow down. I’ve done this five times and never created so much as a spark but if you get worried, take it easy.
Now you should be left with a piece that’s blunt on one end, sharp on the other and all threadable. Use your pliers to screw the blunt end into your dowel piece leaving about half of the screw out (this part will go into the wall anchor). Just like that, your peg is done! You can set your anchor in the wall at any time during this process. Once set, just screw your dowel peg in. After you’ve gotten in as far as it allows, use you hacksaw to saw a small ridge into the top of the dowel. This will act as a wedge and stopper when you hang your shelf. Tug on the dowel a few times to make sure it’s sturdy before you hang anything on it JUST TO BE SAFE.
/ the shelf /
For my shelves I usually glue two pieces of my “bag wood” together, but really you can easily just use one piece, depending on what you want the shelf to hold. For this one, my piece is about 6″ x 3.5″. Mark each corner with your pencil to note where you want to drill the holes. This is easily an “eye-balling” measurement so no need to pull out the ruler.
This is where that pesky drill comes in. Drill where you’ve marked. Afterwards you’ll have sharp edges from where the drill has pushed through the wood. Use your sand sponge to smooth each hole and also the edges of the entire wood block.
Now it’s time to thread your twine through. There are quite a few ways to do this. You can lick the ends (yup, lick them) to create a pointed end, you could also tape one end (which after typing it out probably would have been the quicker way LOL), or you can do what I did and use a piece of upholstery thread like a needle. It’s much thinner than the twine so it won’t get tangled up while trying to pass through the hole. You’ll want to start by going through the top side of one of the holes on the back side (doesn’t matter which one). This way your knot will be in the back. So here’s the plan:
- Go through the top of the back (doesn’t matter if it’s the left or right)
- From there, go under to the front (the hole directly in front of where you just went through)
- then go across the top to the adjacent whole (this will be either left or right, depending on where you started)
- Lastly, go under to the back
- Knot the two end together
- When you flip the block over you should see two lines of twine on the left and right sides but nothing on the back or front
Your wood block should now have one piece of twine threaded through to create two “handles”. Play with it until the shelf hangs with the knotted piece directly at the center, the other piece (handle) should be smooth.
Just like that you’re done! You’re ready to hang your shelf and whatever kind of goodness you’re putting on display. Even with the stability of the anchor, be mindful of how much weight you add – remember my pebbled vase collapse of early March lol. Otherwise, have fun, be creative and enjoy your new piece of stylist handmade-ness.
As always, thank you sooo much for reading! There are so many fun ways to put your own touch on this pegged shelf! Paint it, add a trim, make it multi-leveled…..use your creativity – and if you try it, let me know!