DIY Bookshelf Frames

DIY Bookshelf Frames

Use Carpenter David Leon’s instructions to make decorative floating bookshelves.

5 col

Note: These instructions are for an 8”x10” frame

Picture frames of various sizes
3/4-inch thick plywood — (2) 10 3/4” x 7 1/2”, (2) 9 1/2” x 7 1/2”
8-inch piece of plywood
Drill with 1/4-inch forstner bit & 1/16-inch twist bit
1-inch wood screws
Interior paint
Paint brush
Drywall anchor
Hand saw


  1. To construct the wooden box that will hold your books, measure the inside of your frame. You want your box to connect to the backside of your frame in the flatest spot. (For our 8-inch-by- 10-inch frame, our box measured 10 3/4 inches by 9 1/2 inches)
  2. Screw your box together with the 10 3/4-inch pieces on the inside of the 9 1/2-inch pieces. Your screws should go through the 9 1/2-inch piece and then into the ends of the 10 3/4-inch piece (your box should be 7 1/2-inches deep)


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  1. Paint your box the color of your choosing (we chose the same color as the wall it would be attached to) and let dry
  2. Make sure your frame is lined up with your box. Create pilot holes for the nails on the frame using your drill and the 1/16-inch twist bit. Make 3 pilot holes per side: one in the middle of each side and in all four corners. This is important so that you don’t split the frame
  3. Take your nails and gently nail the frame to the box through your pilot holes and into the edges of your box
  4. Paint over the nails to match the frame
  5. To attach the new box frames to the wall, cut a piece of plywood into an 8-inch strip with a hand saw
  6. Use your 1/4-inch forstner bit to drill guide holes into the 8-inch piece of plywood. Your holes should be 6 inches apart and only 1/2-inch deep
  7. Find the spot on the wall where you would like to hang your box. Place your 8-inch piece of wood on the wall and use your level to make sure it is straight. Make a mark on the wall underneath your 8-inch piece, lining up those marks with your guide holes
  8. Put your 8-inch piece down and drill in two drywall anchors on these marks. (This will allow you to place your box anywhere without having to worry about drilling into studs.) Now line up your 8-inch piece with the drywall anchors. Use two wood screws to go through the wood and into the drywall and stud anchors

  1. Hang your frame on the piece that you just hung. Drive two wood screws through the top of your box frame and into the 8-inch piece

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