DIY Circle Shelf - From Salvaged Wagon Wheel

Heather Cammack
by Heather Cammack
7 Materials
2 Hours

Making a one-of-kind circle shelf is a lot easier than you may think. I've had two old wagon wheels wasting away in my yard that were left here by a previous homeowner. Even though wagon wheels don't really fit into my personal style, I decided to find a way to salvage them into our decor. After a bit of thought, I decided to turn one into a circle shelf.

A quick and important note to make is that you don't have to go hunting for a wagon wheel. Any round salvaged item out there can be shelfified using this tutorial. Get creative!

Be sure to click on the link to my blog for a more detailed tutorial, and lots more DIY inspiration.

This was my starting point. I went ahead and gutted my wheel then gave it a warm bath of water and dish soap. I was trying to ease it into it's new life as an interior decor piece. Welcome to the family you goofy old country bumpkin!

I measured across the wheel in the places I decided I wanted to put shelves. Because I plan to fill my shelving with mostly plants and/or candles, I opted for two shelves to give lots of room.

I also think this circle shelf would make a great spot for a collection of photos.

Next, I marked my wheel where I wanted the tops of my shelves to be. An easy way to do this is to push your circular salvaged object up against a flat surface. Then measure the distance from the flat surface to the circle and mark. Do this on both sides.

After I had my shelf location all figured out, I trimmed my boards to a rough length just a tad longer than what I needed.

Then, I laid my boards over the wheel, lining them up with the marks from earlier. Using a pencil, I traced on the board using the wheel as a guide.

The traced line makes a great template for trimming the boards to length.

For reference, my wheel is about 3 inches wide, and the boards I used are 1x4.

Using some E6000 glue, I attached the shelves to my wheel. Cutting some wedges from scrap wood helped keep the shelves in place as the glue dried.

You may also notice that I sneakily painted my wheel without documenting. This is because I get so excited about an idea, that I often forget about my camera. However, I sprayed the wheel with a stain covering spray primer, and gave it a topcoat of black chalk paint.

If you would like to paint your wheel, you do not need to use chalk paint, that's just what I happened to have on hand. I would suggest using a good stain/rust covering spray primer though.

To keep from killing my family, I hung my shelf with a heavy duty lag bolt screwed into a stud. After all, my wheel weighs about 60 pounds.

I might get around to painting the bolt, and if you're not as impatient (lazy)  as me, I say go for it.

And then I starting loading her up with plants. I plan to collect a few more and use this as a, sort of, living wall decor piece.

I hope you find this post helpful and it gets the creative juices flowing!

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Heather Cammack
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
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  • Penny Wyngarden Penny Wyngarden on Apr 11, 2019

    Couldn't u have made shelves out of all the legs in the wheel

  • Judy Mckie Judy Mckie on Apr 18, 2019

    I like it. wwonder if something could be made from the bars?probably not. look in bad shape. lol.

  • Sandra Christian Sandra Christian on Apr 18, 2019

    Did u angle the cut of the boards (shelves)? Looks like it but u didn’t mention it?

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  • Janie Janie on Jun 25, 2019

    You did great and it's a nice piece of wall art! Like the arrangement with the hanging plant to the left. Good placement! Thought maybe you could have painted the shelves black but on second thought I think I like the contrast better.

  • Johanne Palange Johanne Palange on Aug 29, 2020

    Wagon wheels being hard to come by in most parts of the world, I would try adapting this idea using a hula hoop.