DIY Built-in Bookcases


This is our biggest project to date. My husband bought all the tools we would need to build our built-in bookcases. He learned each tool as we needed to use them. You can read all about each tool at LindaHomeisWhereMyHeartis.com.

We bought kitchen cabinets from Habitat for Humanity ReStore.

Two coats of primer and trim paint.

Butcherblock countertop from IKEA. I stained it a dark walnut, Then three coats of polyurethane.

We built each bookcase section separately. We cut dado cuts for the shelves.

Three of the sections out of a total of six sections (three on each side of the desk in the center).

I painted all the bookcases.


I knew I wanted lights in the bookcases. We had someone run a wire through each box to the electrical box.

We added the fascia (top piece) to cover the exposed wire.

We added trim to give it a clean finished look.

We added the sconces. As I said, we had prewired before the bookcases were put up and attached to the wall.

The finished bookcase.

All dressed up

All Falled Up!

Before and After

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Linda @ Home is Where My Heart is

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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Have a question about this project?

3 of 8 questions
  • Hummingbird
    on Nov 30, 2019

    What did you use under the cabinets to get them off the floor? Did you have a separate base for each cabinet?

  • Patti Rueth
    on Dec 1, 2019

    It looks like you removed the 2 drawers on each side... is it just decoration or do the openings serve a purpose?

    • We took the drawers out of one side for the ethernet and computer for the tv which is right above it. I wanted it to look symmetrical so I removed the other drawers and put baskets for pens and pencils.

  • Candi Cornell May
    on Dec 1, 2019

    How did you join your butcher block? I have a very long kitchen counter and wanted to use IKEA's too, but didn't know how it would look butted up against each other.

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