Turn Your Ordinary Railings Into Beautiful Built-ins!

2 Materials
2 Days

When we moved into our raised ranch I saw these railings and I was not a fan...even more with a little one on the way! They were low, the bars were to far apart and it was actually a little high off the ground. So here is what I did...

First thing to do is measure how deep/tall you would like the bookcase and adjust the plans accordingly. (click through to my blog to find the plans) After we removed the railing we started building!

For the bookcase I decided I wanted to paint the back of the shelves the same as the wall color to give it some dimension and make it stand out. I painted the shelves and moulding white, and stained the top. To see the other side of the bookcase and the new entry go here.

What do you think? Due to overwhelming comments and questions, this post has been updated on the blog with more pictures of the room.

Suggested materials:

  • Wood Stakes  (Home Depot)
  • Paint  (Home Depot)

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Tara Boettger

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


Have a question about this project?

3 of 18 questions
  • Elizabeth
    on Jan 18, 2019

    I have this exact bookcase/half wall in upstairs hall . It makes the hallway open and airy! Caught nephew climbing bookcase which certainly is unsafe. Ideas to remedy this safety hazard ?

  • Jma47543466
    on Aug 18, 2019

    Have you ever had the builtins be more like an entertainment center not just the shelving? Having a hard time finding anyone that has done it.

  • Sarah
    on Jan 30, 2020

    What wood did you use to frame this out?

Join the conversation

2 of 397 comments
  • Sheila Long McKee
    Sheila Long McKee
    on Jan 15, 2018

    Ours is a half wall but I don’t like that either. I’m afraid the bookcase will take up to much space. Livingroom is small.
  • Pat
    on Jan 16, 2018

    really warms up the area

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