Shelves for the Family Room – DIY

Those living rooms with all the odd-ball built-ins for shelves and spaces for televisions I’m sure were trendy when my house was built (circa early 2000s.) But ever since we moved in I’ve HATED them. We even had to buy a different TV because ours didn’t fit the “designated” space. I have many books, etc. that I would like to have shelves for…but these cubbies are impossible!

This is what I started with (please excuse the TV commercial):


I spent two years staring at them in disgust and hunting for a better solution. Finally, I’d had enough and hinted to my husband my hatred for the cubbies. Since he was about to leave on a business trip overseas and he knows me too well, I had to promise not to “take a sledge hammer to the cubbies” while he was out of town.

I started hunting for a better solution and came up with something inspired by this on Pinterest by The Desert Domicile:


(I knew that I would be working in a bigger space and hoped to be holding lots of heavy books, so I added a few extra support beams inside.)

Of all the helpful hints in this pin, this one was the best helping me visualize:


I’m happy to say that they’re actually fairly level and hold almost everything I wanted them too! What do you think? Better than the built-ins before? Congrats to me for a rare Pinterest success! transformed built ins