DIY Rope Shelving

DIY Rope Shelving | Fabtastic Life

I can’t even tell you how much I love these shelves! They’re so simple, so customizable, and pretty quick to make! My husband and I did it in a day, and most of that time was allowing the stain to dry. We built these for the nursery, but I would love to do something similar in my boys room too! As soon as I saw them on Pinterest, I knew we were going to make it happen! <– I pretty much followed her tutorial, so this is my rough go about, but she has more details 🙂 (The only thing I really changed was the size plank used to screw the eye hooks into. We tried the small one that she used in hers, and it just split the wood right in half, so I would recommend a thicker piece.)

This entire project cost under $25!! Similar “rustic” shelving that I could have bought, was going to run me well over $100. My husband thought with the ropes I was going with a nautical theme, and while that would definitely work and look pretty awesome too, I was just going for woodsy and rustic, I think they turned out pretty great! 😉


–1x8x6 cut to 3 feet (this is what we used, but you can do whatever thickness you’d like, and however many boards you’d like!)
2 eye hooks
3/8″ Manila rope
Drill and 1/2″ drill bit
Stain (We used Olympic Elite in Oxford Brown) (brush, old rag)
Level (optional, but it helps when going to hang the shelves)

How to:

Begin by drilling 1/2″ holes into all four corners of both pieces of your wood. We went 2″ in from the end, and 1″ in from the sides on all the corners.

Now sand down your wood. I didn’t want perfectly square pieces, so I sanded the corners and edges slightly rounded.

PicMonkey Collage

Clean up any dust on your wood and get to staining. I did 2 coats of the oxford brown, wiping lightly in between. Allow the stain to fully dry! I’d also recommend spray painting your 1×3 board here, so that it blends in with your wall color.


Now for the rope, you can do it a couple different ways. You can put it through the bottom back holes of the shelves, up through the eye hook, and down the front holes of the shelves, (while tying your knots to hold them in place of course). <—that was probably confusing?

Or you can do it how we did it. We cut our rope into 4 sections that were each 5 feet long. So we had a single rope for each corner of the shelving. We went up through the bottom and loosely tied a knot under each board on all four sides, roughly lining them up.


We measured our wall, and lined our shelves up centered with the bureau. We didn’t have any studs in that particular area, (which you need if you’re planning on adding some weight to your shelving!), which is why we used the 2×4 to screw the eye hooks into, and hang the whole contraption from.


We measured down from the eye hooks for where we wanted the top shelf to lie, and tied our ropes together up top, to the eye hooks.

We then went down, untied the loose knots, leveled the boards, and retied the knots tighter once the wood was level. And voila! Now decorate and enjoy your new shelves!


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