Inexpensive shelving ideas can be found in unexpected places. A walk through a home improvement store offers many design options. Even college dorm shelving like concrete breeze blocks and wood shelves can be made stylish and trendy. Particle board can be dressed up to look fashionable with a casual or elegant moulding. You can make easy, affordable shelving look good with paint, fabric and other minimal embellishments.
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Blocks and Boards
There are many variations on the concrete breeze block and wood board shelving unit. Concrete blocks have become more decorative and varied. There is a wide choice of concrete paints and stains to choose from. Cover the concrete with inexpensive stone tiles, fabric, wallpaper or coloured foam core board. The blocks can also be decorative wood corbels, glass or acrylic blocks.
Track shelving is a flexible way to make use of premium space. It consists of tracks that attach to a wall, curved-tip metal brackets that slip into the notches of the tracks, and boards that sit on the metal inserts. This shelving is easy to install, cost-effective because you only buy what you need, and versatile because you can configure the tracks and shelves in any combination that meets your needs. Plus, you can always add more brackets and shelves as you need them. Choose white melamine boards, finished pine boards or other flat surfaces to use as shelves.
Flower Pots and Glass
A variation on concrete blocks is using terra-cotta or colourful flower pots for the support for the boards or glass shelves. Or use garden gnomes or other whimsical lawn creatures. Because flower pots come in a variety of sizes, shelves can be different heights to accommodate different sizes of items and books. And glass shelves will let the whimsy shine through.
Wooden Shoe Caddies
A wooden shoe caddie is a bunch of small narrow boxes in one unit. Though the box space isn't very large, they are deep enough to hold more than just shoes. The ones without a backboard are less expensive. These also make great room dividers. In the kitchen, these boxes can hold an assortment of towels, pot holders, spices and other kitchen stuff.
The space where two walls meet offers plenty of opportunities to add cheap shelf space. Buy a 24-inch round board at a home improvement store and cut it into quarters. You now have four instant round corner shelves. Paint them to match the wall, or use faux stone finish paint. Attach to the wall with shelf brackets, or use the track system mentioned above for adjustable shelves.
Scour thrift stores for unusual shelving ideas. For the sports buff, old skateboards or skis can be painted and attached to the wall. Drawers out of busted dressers can become box shelves staggered at different heights on a wall. Then put plywood in the space where the drawers came out and you have another rack of cheap shelving.
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