DIY – Shoe Shelf

Spring is here! For us, this means more DIY projects because the conditions are favorable for working in the garage sanding and staining. We’re starting this DIY season with something small.

As we added humans to our family it seemed our shoe situation tripled each time. It began to get out of hand last year when our youngest got his third pair of shoes that he likes to wear. Traditionally we’ve kept our shoes by the entry door for ease of access. At our old house we came in the front door and there was just a bit of a landing before the carpet everywhere else. So we took our shoes off and kept them by that door to keep our carpet clean. But in our new house we have a bit of a different situation.

Luckily in the new house we have mostly non-carpeted floors. So we kept the shoes by the front door still, but we just had a basket to throw them all in. This kept things more tidy than shoes sprawled everywhere, but it was also awful to dig through to find the shoes you wanted to wear today. So something had to be done about it – SHOE SHELF!

We thought how about a three level shoe shelf to make the shoes more accessible but still tidy. So here is our version to get your creative juices flowing.


First, we measured our space to fill. Ours was about 29 inches, so we cut our boards to about 28-1/2 to have some breathing room. Here’s our cut list:

2 – 2X10 @ 28-1/2″

That’s it! So easy!

So for the hardware we wanted an industrial look. Here’s our hardware list:

12 – Floor Flanges

6 – 1/2-in dia X 8-in Black Pipe

We painted our hardware with:

Rust-Oleum Gray Hammered Spray Paint

And we stained with our current favorite:

Minwax Special Walnut

and protected it with:

Minwax Wipe On Poly – Satin Finish

So here we go!

1st – Cut your boards to length. We use a DeWalt miter saw but you can use a circular saw if that’s what’s you’ve got. Short and easy cuts are no big deal.

2nd – Sand your wood. We used pretty soft pine so starting with anything heavier than 120 grit sand paper you’re probably going to do more damage than good. Heavy grain will cut into your wood and once you stain it you’ll see swirlies in it which is generally undesirable. So we did a 120 grit first and followed it with a 220 grit.

3rd – Stain your wood. We like to wear gloves and wipe on  mostly, but we will use a brush to get in to some tough cracks and such. We always start on the bottom side of our project and then move to the front/top. We do this because the bottoms are hidden most of the time and if we miss any drips or whatnot it will usually not be seen. Also it helps the front/top stay pristine once it’s stained.  Make your own judgement call for how dark you want your stain to be. The longer you let is soak in, the darker and richer your finished product will be.

4th – Protect your wood (always important kids)! We like wipe on poly for a couple reasons. Sometimes our workspace is less than free from dust so we find in those cases we have more of a rough feeling finished product if we brush on poly and let it dry slowly. The dust tends to find its way in there no matter if there is breeze or not. So wipe on poly tends to dry much quicker and thus giving us a smoother finished product in most environments.  Here we also do the bottom first and then the front/top.

That’s it for the wood!

Next we move to the hardware. Simple! We lay out our hardware on a sprayable surface. Here we do the bottom (or any not-immediately visible) part first, let dry, and then flip over and do the visible parts. This makes for a great look with no drips or drying spots.


Once everything is dry it’s time to attach it. A picture is worth a thousand words so take a look at our placement and change yours to suit. We moved our flanges in about a 1/2 inch and put 4 on our bottom shelf for a good base and then two on our top shelf for look.

You did it! Now you have a beautiful, functional shoe shelf!!

Since the shelf itself looked pretty plain, we decided to add some accessories to complete the area.  We found this multicolor rug from Hobby Lobby to give some separation between shelf and flooring (which we seriously dislike, but have plans down the road for an entire first floor remodel so we are trying to wait it out).  This “Hello World” sign, also from Hobby Lobby, gave the area a finished look by occupying the empty space.

Hope you guys liked this shelf and let us know if you have a similar entry way problem that needs a solution!

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