Fireplace Shelves: How to Build Shelving around a Fireplace

What You'll Need
4-5 foot long boards
8 -1x8 inch racks
1-2x10 inch boards
Measuring tape
Paint or wood stain

Introducing fireplace shelves enhances the look of your room. With the proper tools and this guide to follow you can fix your own fireplace shelves. Follow the steps below to build shelves around your fireplace.

Step 1 – Designing

Sketch out how you would like your fireplace shelves to look. It should blend with the existing setting. Creating shelves on either sides of the fireplace with a large shelf adorning the top like a mantel will look spectacular.

Step 2 – Frame for Side Shelves

To execute the above mentioned design - shelving around the fireplace, you will need four 5 foot long boards. These boards will act as the frame for the shelves that will go on either sides of the fireplace.

Step 3 – Working on the Left Side Shelf

Take one of the 5 foot long boards and starting from the top measure and mark 12 inches down, now from this marked point measure and mark 13 inches down, from the second marking measure 13 inches down followed by 17inches down from the third mark. You now have four markings on one of you 5 foot long boards, repeat the same process on the other three boards.

Step 4 – Placing the Racks

The next step is to place the racks on the frame. For this, take two of the 5 foot long boards and place them at a distance of 16 inches from each other. Take a 1x8 inch rack, apply wood glue on the two sides that will touch the 5 foot long boards and slid it along the last marked lines. The rack is now placed between the two 5 foot long boards.

Step 5 – Nailing the Shelf

The frame with one rack on the bottom is ready to be nailed to the wall on the fireplace. Place it vertically and while nailing, keep the nails 3 inches apart.

Step 6 – Placing All the Racks

Now that the frame is up, complete it by adding the other three racks. Glue them onto the frame at the marked guidelines.

Step 7 – Making the Right Side Shelf

Repeat step 3, 4, 5 and 6 to make an identical shelf for the right side of the fireplace.

Step 8 – Mantel Shelf

The next step is to create a board that will go on top of the fireplace and give the mantel piece effect.

Step 9 - Measuring

Measure the horizontal length (width) of your fireplace at the top. Add another 40 inches to the measurement.

Step 10 – The Mantel Piece

Take a 1x8 inch board and cut it according to the measurement. Your mantel piece is ready.

Step 11 – Placing the Mantel

Place the mantel over the shelves and nail it down. The nails should be 6 inches apart.

Step 12 – Dressing it Up

Sand the shelves till it is smooth. Add wood stain; wait for an hour between coats. That’s it! Your fireplace shelf is ready.