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If you DIY, could you help me with some ideas?


TABmom
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I have this idea, but I'm not sure how to accomplish it. My kids' rooms have these little alcoves (very old house and when it was updated, closets were added in the bedrooms and these little spaces are next to the closets). What I would like to do is make desks to go in them- I would like to attach a thick shelf to the wall and put drawers or cabinets on each side. One is 4'8" and the other 4'6". They're about 2 1/2 feet deep, but I don't care if the shelf/writing surface is that deep, but I'd like it to be at least 18". I had this idea looking at the shelf that is in the closet- it's nice and thick and even pretty. Maybe it's molding attached to it? I don't really know. I'd just like to make use of all the available space, because the bedrooms are small. I wanted to put loft beds with desks underneath, but I think the ceilings are too low. (7 ft- the loft beds say you should have a ceiling height of 8 ft) Anyone have ideas that could help me? Thanks.

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That is gorgeous! I'm not sure how to make it though. It is the kind of thing I was thinking of. And file cabinets are a great idea. I've seen several at the thrift store lately and they could be spray painted in fun colors!

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Go to Lowe's.  Get a piece of smooth MDF and have them cut it to the size of the alcoves for you.  To finish the MDF You can prime, sand, paint, sand or you can put a piece of plastic laminate on it to finish it (Ana White's website has instructions on making laminate countertops yourself).  If you hate mdf, you can also get a piece of wood tabletop cut to size, though it will probably be a bit more expensive.

 

Take a scrap of any wood - a 2x4 or whatever you have, cut to the correct length, and hang it on the wall on all 3 sides of the alcove. Use a level to make sure it is. Nail or screw these brackets in several places on the wall - you want to screw into the wood behind the wall.  If you have an old house you'll probably have wood everywhere.  New houses have studs behind the walls every 18" or so instead of the lath or shiplap that older homes have.  Put the desktop on top of the brackets.

 

You can make additional brackets at higher and lower heights if you wish - for shorter shelves above and below the desk.

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Go to Lowe's. Get a piece of smooth MDF and have them cut it to the size of the alcoves for you. To finish the MDF You can prime, sand, paint, sand or you can put a piece of plastic laminate on it to finish it (Ana White's website has instructions on making laminate countertops yourself). If you hate mdf, you can also get a piece of wood tabletop cut to size, though it will probably be a bit more expensive.

 

Take a scrap of any wood - a 2x4 or whatever you have, cut to the correct length, and hang it on the wall on all 3 sides of the alcove. Use a level to make sure it is. Nail or screw these brackets in several places on the wall - you want to screw into the wood behind the wall. If you have an old house you'll probably have wood everywhere. New houses have studs behind the walls every 18" or so instead of the lath or shiplap that older homes have. Put the desktop on top of the brackets.

 

You can make additional brackets at higher and lower heights if you wish - for shorter shelves above and below the desk.

Wow! Thanks!!!

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Just so you know, when you prime MDF it raises the wood grain and makes it...  well, fluffy.  So if you go with that (cheaper) route, sanding will be required.  If you don't have primer and paint and sand paper on hand, it might be cheaper and easier to get one sheet of smooth hardwood plywood to use as a desktop instead.  Maple, Oak, Aspen, sometimes others are around for $40-60 a sheet at most home stores.  If you need cutting done, I have found Lowe's to be more reliable around the country.  Home Depot also has these saws too, but IME they tend to be broken more often than the Lowe's ones are.  HD can be a cheaper place to shop though, so you might check their websites and call ahead to see if they can cut the boards for you.  If you get hardwood plywood, you can either paint or stain, or just buy pre-sanded plywood and put a smooth clear water-based polyurethane on it as a bit of protection.  You can cover the edges with edge banding veneer, which will match the grain and hide that it's plywood at all.

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