Every home needs decent shelving but sometimes a traditional shelf just won’t do. Maybe there’s an awkward space that a standard shelf won’t fit into. Perhaps you live in a rented home and can’t risk drilling holes into the wall to hang brackets. Or you might have a wealth of items in the garage that you hadn’t realised could be recycled into something new and useful.
With a little imagination, you can create stylish (and functional!) shelving to fit around your lifestyle and needs. Here are some simple yet creative ideas to get you started.
Get a step up
Ladders are great, not only for changing light bulbs and doing a spot of DIY, but they can be repurposed into stylish storage. Ladder shelves are really popular at the moment, thanks to home décor boards on sites such as Pinterest.
A wooden ladder is best as it can be sanded down and varnished, or painted to match your décor.
Hang it flat using brackets to create space between the ladder and wall – perfect for storing books or notepads. Need to hang clothes? No problem.
Use wider heavy-duty brackets and fix the ladder from one side with the rungs above your head. Now you can hang light clothes from the rungs with coat hangers.
Lean your ladder against a wall and drape scarves or jewellery from the rungs. Store heels on the bottom steps to finish the look. You could even wind a string of lights around the ladder as an unusual lighting feature.
If your ladder has wider planks, then lean it against a wall and use the steps to store items such as folded clothes, towels or toiletries. This is particularly good in smaller bathrooms that have less room for traditional storage or for those who don’t feel confident drilling into tiles to put shelves up.
Smaller step ladders can easily be used as bedside tables or as additional shelving in awkward spots in a kitchen.
Upcycling other items into shelves
Old wooden doors can be upcycled into amazing looking storage by taking out individual panels and re-attaching them to make shelves.
You can recycle a multitude of items to act as shelving – fancy wooden boxes to give depth, the front panel of a drawer on its side or even leftover pieces of laminate floor planks can be given a new lease of life by popping them onto some brackets.
Take the opportunity to declutter unused items while giving yourself an organisation solution that can become a design feature or talking point.
Don’t be square. Or flat
Shelves don’t necessarily have to be flat. Gather some old biscuit tins or circular plastic tubs and spray paint to give them a fresh look. Glue the base to a round frame or mirror and hang on the wall as you usually would a picture.
This alternative to shelving can be used to house small trinkets or ornaments and will certainly give your room the ‘wow-factor’, especially if you group three or more tubs together.
Think outside of the box
Skirting board isn’t just for making the walls look pretty. Long pieces of skirting can easily be divided up to meet the needs of those awkward nooks and crannies. Attach to the wall with small brackets (or even specialist no-nail glue) and display small items, toys or ornaments.
Make the most of small corners by using two or three magazine boxes. Usually kept upright on a desk, they can look great turned on their side and attached to the wall.
Approaching shelving options in a non-traditional way will open up endless ideas for maximising your storage space and transform the look of a room, giving it a unique finish.