A wall-mounted bookcase adds an extra architectural element to a living room, bedroom, library or office while providing storage for books, DVDs and decorative accessories. Visually, a wall-mounted bookcase looks like it is part of the house rather than a piece of furniture and can be constructed to match the room's molding and other elements. This type of shelving can also be customized for size, adjustable shelving, spot lighting and cabinet doors.
Step 1: Measure and Cut Backing
Decide how tall and wide you would like your bookshelf to be and then measure and cut your plywood to fit the desired dimensions. This panel, whether single or joined with others, acts as the bookshelf spine and should be at least 3 layers thick.
Step 2: Side Construction
Attach hardwood planks to the inside edges of the plywood back panel. Since the back of the bookcase will be recessed into the wall, it doesn’t make a difference if you attach the sides to the inside or outside edges. Just make sure to secure the sides with screws at every foot. Use a level or the help of a partner to make sure all sides are kept perfectly straight.
Step 3: Top it Off
The top piece needs to have a width equaling the thickness of the plywood paneling so you may need to find a larger plank or cut two boards to assemble these to fit the space required. Use a drill and wood screws to safely secure the top section.
Step 4: Sand the Surface
It is highly recommended to use a power sander to smooth the back panel and all edges. Begin using coarse grade paper and then finish with a fine grade to remove all imperfections and blemishes.
Step 5: Attach Molding
Use a hacksaw to cut all measured molding. Glue strips of molding to the outside edges of the front of the bookshelf with wood glue. Clamp the molding to the edges allowing sufficient time to dry.
Step 6: Shelves
Cut wood planks to the desired length. Keep in mind, regardless the shelf placement configuration, to allow at least a ¼-inch on both sides of the bookcase as a buffer area. You do not want the shelves to abut the sides of the bookcase. Sand all rough edges and then apply stain or paint.
Step 7: Mark the Recess Area
Mark the drywall area where the bookshelf will go.
Step 8: Cut the Wall Area
After marking the wall area, check to see if you need to add blocks where flooring may be missing inside the wall cut. Use scrap wood to place platform blocks for the bookshelf to sit upon. Level these off.
Step 9: Install the Bookshelf
Attach the bookshelf to the wall studs by marking the locations using a stud finder. Drill holes through the back board and secure the shelf to the wall studs with screws. Attach all shelves securely with brackets using wood screws. Making sure all connections are tightly secured.