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Homemade Shelves

December 27, 2011

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I needed to know how to make my own shelves, so this weekend while I visited my parents, I asked my mom. My mom knows how to make things; she’s comfortable with studfinders, drills, all that basic and slightly-above-basic stuff. Her dad, my Opa, was a mechanic, which literally saved his life. In the concentration camp, during the war, he knew how to make things, and how to fix things. He was valuable, so they didn’t kill him.

When I feel anxious, making things helps to calm and steady me. Cooking, sewing, hammering, measuring. Adjusting and correcting. It’s not even about doing it well (some things I’m good at; others I’m not), but there’s a wonderful feeling of becoming absorbed in a project for hours and hours.

So today, with my mom’s instructions and some friendly help from the landlord’s husband, this new mini-pantry came together. Highly imperfect, construction-wise, but I love it anyway.

It's a little hard to see, but the bubble in the center indicates that the shelves are level. I was so proud that I just left the level on there for like three days, just gazing happily at it from time to time.

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. bohemiankitsch permalink
    December 28, 2011 3:11 am

    i love it! :)

    kinda makes me want to give it a try.

    and you’ve got some good teas up there. the Ceylon and the Pu-Erh are my ‘go-to’ teas of the season.

  2. Susan permalink
    December 28, 2011 6:18 am

    It looks great, Katie! and especially cheery against that yellow wall :) hope you are well, I miss you.

  3. Emily permalink
    December 28, 2011 8:53 am

    Beautiful work! Nothing beats a nice homemade shelf :)

  4. December 28, 2011 1:00 pm

    Nice work! DOING things is so satisfying, even when the result is less-than-perfect. (But it looks beautiful from here.)

  5. aneeeeeeeta permalink
    December 28, 2011 4:16 pm

    friendship!! this looks SO SO good! you are such a handywomyn! always inspiring me lovebug :)

  6. December 28, 2011 6:49 pm

    Aw, thanks friends! I will pass on the compliments to my mama, who deserves them the most. I kept asking her more and more questions (What kind of wood should it be? How do these pegs work, again? How do I make sure it’s level?) until she finally drew me a diagram so that I could go to Home Depot and have some inkling of what I was looking for, and how to assemble the pieces. :)

    But yes, like you said Mahfam, doing things is hella satisfying. Maybe we can make some stuff together in the new year.

    Aneeta, I can’t wait til you’re home! Let’s cook dal from the lentils on the shelf. :)

    Susan I miss you, too! Hope you are all kinds of happy and healthy these days — keeping busy, no doubt.

    BK, you were the first to introduce me to the concept of rinsing tea before steeping. Thought about that just the other morning, while making Pu-Ehr.

    Emily, someday I hope we can do a crafty project together, and I can apprentice with you! Y’all’s table is hella inspiring!

  7. Sycorax permalink
    January 6, 2012 8:59 am

    YOU ARE SO CUTE WITH YOUR LEVEL! I want to make a shelf!

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