This DIY Wooden Slat Bookshelf Wall Will Turn Any Room Into A Personal Library

Books can be one of the most dynamic ways to fill your space. Not only do they offer a glimpse into your personality and interests, but they can also be used as pieces of art and décor themselves, with many offering visual beauty and textural appeal. While contemporary bookshelves and littered stacks around the home are a great way to store and display books, TikTok user Sarah Pilon recently unveiled a way to create easy shelving for books out of inexpensive wood slats. The shelves, which allow you to display books with the cover facing out, are perfect for creating a fun little reading nook or library wall in any room.

Not only does this DIY make it easy to access your novels, but it also works perfectly for displaying book covers as art. These shelves may be especially ideal for displaying books whose visual beauty might outshine their literary content, such as those with artwork and photography or children's picture books. It's also a budget-friendly alternative to purchasing similar shelves or bookcases, with the total project costing under $100 in lumber. Further, even if you're not experienced in building furniture or completing complicated DIYs, you should still be able to do this project yourself.

Creating a book wall

To create your wall of shelves, you will need a stack of simple wood 1x2-inch boards for the backing. Measure and cut the boards to fit vertically between the ceiling and the baseboards, then space them apart across the wall using another small piece of wood as a spacer. This paneled look will help make the shelves a visual focal point and provide an already attached anchor for the added shelves. Use 2-inch brad nails to attach them to the wall, then fill the holes with wood putty and sand them down.

To create the shallow shelves, you'll need both 1x2 and 1x4-inch boards cut to fit the total horizontal distance across of your vertical paneling. Attach the slender boards to the wider ones with wood glue and nails to form the back of the shelf. Leave them clamped overnight to dry. Use wood screws to attach the back of the shelves directly into the wood pieces already on the wall. To finish the shelves, add a square-shaped wooden dowel or narrow piece of trim molding along the front with wood glue. This will form a lip so that the books do not slide off the shelf. 

Customizing and styling your book wall

You can easily customize your shelves according to available space, creating either a small accent or large wall of books. While Sarah Pilon leaves hers unfinished, you can finish or paint the boards to fit your décor. You can also adjust the sizing depending on the kinds of books that will be stored there by either using longer shelves or adding more vertical space between them. These shelves work perfectly in many spaces, including a home library or kids' room where you want books to be visible and easy to access. Just add a cozy reading chair and a small table in front of the shelves to complete your nook. The DIY unit would also look stunning in a kitchen for holding a selection of cookbooks or in a garden shed for displaying beautiful garden books. 

While a wall full of books gives a stylish bookstore or library feel, you can also decorate the bookshelf with items like art and plants to form small tableaus along with the books. Or, add boxes or baskets to the frame to store smaller books or items. While perfectly designed for displaying books, these shelves are also ideal for other items you might want to showcase, like magazines and other reading materials or framed artwork and prized photos. Finally, space the shelves far enough apart vertically and you can also use them as a fun way to organize and display your vinyl collection.