August is upon us (how did that happen??) and it has me getting my home and kids geared up for fall and a new school year. This means I am purging clothes, toys, books and re-organizing. It also wanted to incorporate a desk area for my son, whom will be starting the 1st grade (WHAT?!?!)! I wanted to create a small desk for homework and art in an underutilized area in his bedroom. Originally, I was going to build a desk and shelving unit with wood and industrial metal pipe. But I quickly realized that the cost and time required to implement my design would have been more than I was willing to commit. So, not one to be discouraged, I thought up a new idea and design and got to work on creating his DIY desk and shelving unit.
Here is what the area in my son’s room looked like before building the DIY desk and shelving unit.
Below is what I designed originally when I thought I was going to construct this DIY desk and shelving unit with wood and industrial metal pipes. I even had some measurements included!
As I mentioned before, I quickly learned that the industrial metal pipe shelf/desk unit was not going to happen. Instead, I decided on a separate shelving unit with small desk next to it made only out of wood. Luckily, I was able to find some great chunky boards in the attic area of our garage for the shelves. I cut down these 2 substantial boards to make 6 shelves. So I had my shelves but I did not have the bracing for the shelves. I debated on using a track system but then found these wooden shelf ends at Menards for $9.99 each. I bought 3 of them.
Of course, they were not the right width nor were the cross supports at the height I wanted them. So, because I am crazy and love to make extra work for myself, I removed the metal brackets holding the wood together (not as easy as I thought it would be), cut the small supports shorter, sanded all the pieces and then rebuilt the ends to the specifications that I wanted. Here is what the shelving unit looked like after I reconstructed the ends and placed the boards in the shelf supports.
I screwed the boards onto the unit and moved it up to my son’s bedroom. And then immediately got to filling the shelves.
After that was done, I still needed to construct the desk. Unfortunately, I did not have anything I could use as the desk top. So the kids and I headed to Habitat for Humanity and I found the PERFECT desk top for $3!! I sanded it down and added some wooden legs to the front. I attached it to the wall with a wooden bracket I made and then moved one of our dining room chairs up to the desk. It looks perfect there and I will likely keep the chair there and maybe look for new end chairs for the dining room.
Fidget spinners paradise around here… But look at how cool this piece of wood is that I got for $3!?! Tons of character!
And here is the whole area.
The desk surface is a good size but it is not huge so I had to use a light that didn’t take up desk space. I used the same Ikea light that I used on the other side of his room next to his bed. Any wall mount or pendant light would have worked. I still have one more piece of wood that I could use to build a shelf above the desk. The storage would be great but not sure I would be crazy about how it would look.
This is the view from the hallway when you walk upstairs.
I think it turned out pretty good even though it greatly deviated from my original plan. With this new design, I can move the pieces around if I wanted fairly easily without leaving much damage to the wall.
What do you think of this little DIY desk and shelving unit? I am still on the look out for some neat bins for holding paper that I can hang on the wall but for now, it is almost ready for 1st grade!