How to Make a Decorative Pegboard Shelf

Need wall storage but can’t find just the right shelving unit? Try this modern take on an old-school storage idea. It’s easy to build and you can customize the colors however you’d like.

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How to Make a Pegboard Shelf
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We installed our pegboard shelf in a bathroom, but it would also look adorable in a kitchen, foyer or kid’s room.

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Tools and Materials

  • 1/2” dowels
  • (1) 1x6 x 8'
  • 1/2” forstner or spade bit
  • 1” x 18” x 24” craft board or plywood
  • measuring tape
  • pencil
  • straight edge
  • spray primer
  • spray paint
  • miter saw, circular saw or hand saw
  • graph paper
  • D-rings
  • screwdriver
  • painter's tape

Skill Level: Beginner
Estimated Time: 1 day
Estimated Cost: $200

Step 1: Mark Pattern on Pegboard

We used a ready-made 1”-thick craft board but you could cut a piece of plywood to whatever size you wish. Tape a large piece of graph paper on the craft board to mark the pattern for the peg holes. Start by drawing lines on the graph paper to create a grid then mark for the holes every three inches, staggering them on every other line.

Step 2: Drill Holes

Use a forstner bit to drill the holes directly through the graph paper. Make sure your drill bit matches the size of the dowel. Keep the drill at 90° to ensure the holes will be straight. When drilling, use a backer board behind the pegboard to prevent blowout.

Step 3: Paint Pegboard

Use spray primer on the pegboard then apply a coat of paint. Make sure you paint inside the holes too. We’re putting our shelf in the bathroom, so a good coat of primer and paint will help protect the natural wood in the moist environment.

Step 4: Cut + Paint Shelves

Various shelf lengths will give you more design flexibility; we used four different sizes. Be sure to allow for a 1” to 1-1/2” overhang on either side of the pegs. Prime and paint the shelves.

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Step 5: Cut + Paint Pegs

The pegs should be cut to 6-1/2” long to be inserted completely into the holes and extend about 1/4” past the front edge of the shelf. Prime and paint the pegs.

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Step 6: Add Hanging Hardware

Add D-rings to the back of the pegboard and then hang it up.

Step 7: Insert Pegs + Lay Shelves

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Arrange the pegs and shelves as desired, then enjoy the added storage.

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