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Kitchen island bench and sink with platter by the wall, next to wall niche full of decorative items.

Overview

Every kitchen could use some extra storage, whether it’s for cookbooks, flowers or even an indoor plant. Open shelving can be the perfect solution for filling a dead space in your kitchen with some additional storage space. And with the right equipment and materials, getting the job done couldn’t be easier.

Steps

1Measure and mark the lengths for the shelves

Measure the space for the open shelves and decide how many shelves you want to install. Here's the cut list for our shelves and quad supports:

Utility hardwood benchtop:
- 205mm x 775mm x 3

Quad moulding: 
- 205mm x 4
- 775mm x 2

Person using measuring tape to measure length of wall niche.

2Cut the shelves

Set up the drop saw and cut each shelf to 205mm x 775mm, we cut three in total.
Person using circular saw to cut piece of timber to size.

3Measure and mark for the quads

Measure the depth of the recess for the shelves. Transfer this measurement onto the quads. Our shelves were 205mm deep.
Person using measuring tape to measure depth of wall niche.

4Cut the quads

We need to cut four quads to support the sides of the shelves. Set the mitre saw to 45 degrees as all of the joins need to be on a 45-degree angle. Cut the quads to size. Set the mitre saw to 90 degrees to cut the non-joining ends of the quads. This will make sure they sit flush with the recess.
Person using circular saw to cut quad moulding to size.

5Measure and mark for the back supports

Measure and mark for the quads that will be attached to the back of the recess. Ours were 775mm. Transfer these measurements onto the quads.
Person using measuring tape and pencil to mark up quad moulding.

6Cut the quads

Set the mitre saw to a 45-degree angle. Cut the two pieces of quad to length.
Person cutting length of timber with circular saw.

7Sand the timber

Use the orbital sander and 240 grit sandpaper to sand the shelves. Hand sand the quads and wipe away any dust.
Person using orbital sander on wooden shelf.

8Apply the hard wax oil

Using long, smooth strokes with the paint brush, apply the hard wax oil to the shelves and the quads. Then use the applicator that is included with the hard wax kit to smooth the hard wax oil onto the timber and create a nice, smooth finish. Make sure you also wax the outward facing surface of the shelf. Let the oil dry.
Person varnishing wooden shelf.

9Install the first shelf

Place the first shelf on the bottom of the recess.
Person inserting wooden shelf at the bottom of wall niche.

10Measure and mark for the other shelves

Once you've decided where you want to put your shelves measure and mark their position. Use a spirit level to draw a straight line across the back of the recess.
Person using measuring tape and pencil to mark up wall.

11Find the studs

Use the stud finder to mark where the studs are located behind the recess.
Person using stud finder on wall.

12Nail gun the shelf supports to the recess

Use the nail gun to fix the quad mouldings into place.
Person using nail gun to fix quad moulding into wall niche.

13Put the shelves in place

Slide your shelves into place on top of the quads.
Person sliding timber shelving in place in wall niche.

14A job well done

Now you get to admire your handiwork. What was an empty space is now a handy storage unit and a stylish addition to your kitchen.
Kitchen island bench and sink with platter by the wall, next to wall niche full of decorative items.

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More D.I.Y. Advice

Health & Safety

Asbestos, lead-based paints and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber are health hazards you need to look out for when renovating older homes. These substances can easily be disturbed when renovating and exposure to them can cause a range of life-threatening diseases and conditions including cancer. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page.

When following our advice in our D.I.Y. videos, make sure you use all equipment, including PPE, safely by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Check that the equipment is suitable for the task and that PPE fits properly. If you are unsure, hire an expert to do the job or talk to a Bunnings Team Member.