built in bookcases during construction
Photo: Alexandra Bandon
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Built in Bookcases - During Construction

One of my first DIY projects was as practical as it was decorative. I have a lot of books and I needed somewhere to put them. Plus, I hate walking into a room and seeing electronics (TV, stereo, computer, etc.), so I needed some way to hide my equipment.

I had already eyed the recesses around the fireplace as perfect for shelving. Using a This Old House step-by-step project, How to Build a Bookcase, as my guide, I designed and constructed a set of shelves. Everything is made out of birch-veneer plywood, with applied trim to hide the cut edges.

Time for construction: one weekend.
Total cost for materials: $300
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