Hexagon shelves are an easy build to upgrade the look and feel of a wall in a hallway, living room or bedroom. This DIY project is going to give you the look and feel of a high dollar shelf with the price tag that fits any budget. This project material cost depending on how many shelves you build is about $3 per shelf if you buy a 8 ft common board you can make 2 per board. If you look online to purchase this you will see a price tag for about $25-40 per shelf. This is why I decided to design my own for myself and others to be able to replicate and build. I have a couple of different sizes to make it easy to create a size that you want.The other nice thing about my projects is that you don’t need to own all the power tools in the world to get them done. For the most part we will MacGyver our way through this with just a hammer, Miter Saw (also not totally necessary as you can make the hardware store do it), Glue, Orbital Sander (again don’t need to buy this and can hand sand everything - though it does make life MUCH easier), and some clamps. We have built in links on this step by step instructions so pay attention, these links will be your guide if you are unsure of what I am explaining. At the end there is also a link to download the actual plans for the build.
Step 1 - Buy Your Tools and Materials
I am showing how to build the how to build the 3" deep and 14" diameter hexagon shelf. This is the smallest of the group and least expensive. You can build this one for a couple of dollars and see how you like it and then upsize or resize from there. Also in another Project I put multiple sizes and Hexagons together to make a honeycomb. For this project you will need 1 1x3 common board @ 96" long (1X4 if making the deeper shelf). At this length you can build 2 shelves if you would like and put them together when done or use this as a means to see how it fills the space and get an idea if you would like to build a larger and deeper versions.
1X3 Common Board - Length 96" (8') - qty of (1)
Stain/Finish (pick your color and type)
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Step 2 - Measure your Material and Cut it to Length
Cut your Materials. If you don’t have a miter saw, don't worry, you can usually get your hardware store to cut it for you. Just download the complete plans at the bottom of these steps and you can print your material cut page.... Isn’t that easy! Or if you are tech savy, just bring your smart phone with you and zoom in and give them the dimensions.
Step 3 - Sand Splintered Edges and Any Major Defects
Sand these pieces before you do anything else. Mainly get the splintered ends removed. Be careful not to round the edges unless that is the look you are going for, but it is best for that to be done after you nail it together.
Step 4 - Glue, Clamp, and Nail
We want to glue the ends of each piece and rough set them together. You will need 3 clamps for this to hold the sides of the hexagon together so that you can nail it together. Once it is clamped together check for square and tighten and loosen until it is a uniform hexagon. After this work your way around the Hexagon nailing it together. Ensure your nails are level with the board you are driving it into, this will ensure a nail doesn't poke through the side of the board.
Step 5 - Bury Nail Heads, Putty, and Sand again!
This is the part where you need to decide how you want the shelf to look. If you choose rustic.... good news, this is easy because less is more! What I mean is that making the ledge look rustic is easy because it is less intensive in prep for stain and finishing. If you choose a clean and sharp look, this takes more prep. As you make your decision on finish, don't forget to consider the following questions: Do you want square edges or warn looking edges? Do want to make it look like it has been dinged and gouged? Are you looking for the appearance that this has been through the lumber mill? If so these are techniques that we will do with the sander or a wire well. Do you want the nail holes shown? Filled? We will do any or all of these before we stain or lacquer. So depending on your finish I have links on this site to help you try and achieve your desired look. You will want to make sure that you bury your nail heads before sanding, so take that nail punch you just bought and drive the nail heads about 1/16" under the surface. After this is done, take your wood putty (stain-able or paintable) and fill any imperfections and fill any holes and gaps (unless you want a rustic look of course). Sanding the putty does not have to be perfect because you get to sand this after it dries. When the putty dries, you will want to sand smooth your putty/filler to give you the desired look you are going for and also get rid of any high spots. The putty is stain-able but it could be slightly off on color.
Step 7 - Stain, Paint, or whitewash
There are so many colors to chose as the options for stains and paints are limitless. Depending on what you want to do, I recommend you try out your finish on scrap piece of material (if you are anything like me you may have 1 or 2 scrap pieces after some projects). Stains react differently to each type of wood and also to imperfections on the wood. I really like stains because they bring out different colors and textures of wood than most paints. For stains, my best advice is to test it first, then try it on your piece. Do not let the stain set to long before wiping off your first coat. This is because you will see if this is the tint or color that you want. If it is apply a second coat and let it set a little longer, the longer the stain sits, the darker it gets. Do not let stain dry on top of the wood. What this means is that you will want to wipe off any excess after it has set for your prepping time. One trick to use is that when you are wiping off the stain, wipe in the direction you want to pull the color or hue to. The longer you wipe and work it, the darker it will get. I usually always use a cloth when I wipe. One other tip is wear gloves! Hopefully you did a read all of this article before you started working on your shelf and didn't get stain all over your hands. If you have never used stains before, hopefully you become a fan. If not, there is paint and paint can dress up anything if you chose the right color. Paint is pretty straight forward, and like stain, test it first so that you can see how it is going to dry. I always recommend multiple coats to get good coverage and also bring out the true color of the paint. After your paint/stain has dried chose an appropriate top coat for what you just applied. Since these shelves might have plants on them or someone might think to put a drink on it, use a good clear coat. A little trick I learned is be sure to apply at least 3 coats and lightly sand with a 180 or higher grit between the first and second coats.
If you have any questions or comments please let us know. We are always striving to be better and supply you with the best content to make projects easy and affordable. If you have any project ideas or something you would love to build or have built and want to share please contact us and we will do what ever we can to help. Stay tuned and Lets Keep Improving! Jeff
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