Make a Special Shelf to Display Holiday Decor

halloween shelves

We all have holiday decorations we love to bring out during the season and this shelf gives you a perfect place to display them.

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays.  Oh sure, I like the jack-o-lanterns and costumes, but I love the treats!  One of my favorite childhood memories is trick-or-treating with my brothers.  After a few hours of going door to door, we’d dump all of candy onto the dining room table and divvy it all up.  What a haul!

Shari loves Halloween too, although she’s a big fan of candy corn, her favorite part of Halloween is of course, the decorations.  Since Shari really enjoys seasonal décor, I thought it would be a good idea to build a shelf for her entry way.  The decorations could be changed throughout the year.  What a great way to welcome guests.

If you’d like to build a shelf for your seasonal decorations, read on!

Materials List:

  • Pine or poplar
  • Pegs
  • Wood glue
  • Finish nails
  • Sand paper
  • Tack cloth
  • Sanding sealer
  • Stain of choice
  • Polyurethane
  • Wood putty
  • Latex paint of choice
  • 2” latex paint brush
  • Spackle compound
  • Scroll saw
  • Circular saw
  • Awl or long nail
  • Drill
  • Spade bit
  • Toggle bolt
  • Torpedo level

Our display shelf measures 30” long.   Your shelf can be built to any size, but keep in mind, the longer the shelf, the more stuff you’ll need to fill it!

1.  To make the top, cut a 1 x 6 to the desired length with your circular saw.

2.  Sand the entire piece smooth with 220 grit sandpaper, wipe with a tack cloth, and then add a sanding sealer to help even out the stain.

3.  Once it’s dry, add the desired stain, and follow that up with a couple coats of polyurethane.  Repeat this process with the pegs.

4.  The face board is made out of a 1 x 3 and measures 25” long.  To give the shelf a bit more character, you might want to add a decorative edge to the face board with your router.

5.  There are four pegs on the face board.  Measure in 3 ½” from the left edge of the face board and 1 ½” from the top edge.  Using a ½” spade bit, drill a hole through the face board.  Repeat this step three more times, placing the pegs 6 ¼” apart.

6.  To make the support pieces, use scraps from the 1 x 6.   Cut two 5” pieces with the circular saw.  Making sure the top edge of the support measured the full 6”, draw a slight S-shaped curve and used a scroll saw to cut out both supports.

7.  Sand the face board and supports using 220 grit sandpaper.  After wiping them clean with a tack cloth, paint the pieces to the desired color using latex paint.  You’ll probably need to use two coats.

8.  To assemble the shelf, begin by attaching the support pieces to the face board.  To determine the placement of the face board, measure down 3” from the top edge of the support.

9.  Attach the face board to the supports by drilling two pilot holes in each support.  Run a bead of wood glue along the edge of the face board, and then secure the two pieces together using finish nails.  Attach the shelf to the supports in the same manner.

10.  Fill holes on the stained top with wood putty, matching the putty to the stain.  Fill the holes on the painted supports with spackle, sand very lightly, and do a little paint touch up with your finger or a small sponge brush.

11.  To install the shelf, first place the shelf into position, making sure it’s level.   Drill pilot holes through the two end peg holes to mark the location on the wall.

12.  Set the shelf aside and using a spade bit, drill two holes large enough for the toggle to pass through. Then, while holding the shelf in place, pass the two toggles through the holes until they catch on the other side.   Tighten the screws while keeping pressure on the toggle. Readjust the shelf, making sure it is level and glue the pegs into place.

Once your shelf is in place, it’s time for all your favorite Halloween decorations. I’m sure all the little ghosts and goblins who come to your house on Halloween will be very impressed, but just to be on the safe side, better have some treats ready, too!


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