Build a Whimsical Cloud Bookshelf for a Kids' Bedroom
Organize and display your kids’ books and toys with style! Learn how to build this adorable cloud bookshelf with just a few supplies from the hardware store.
- (1) 1x10 x 8’ board
- (1) 1x10 x 6’ board
- (1) 1x8 x 6’ board
- (1) 2’ x 4’ sheet of 1/4” plywood
- veneer edge banding (optional)
NOTE: This plan assumes the boards are a nominal width, not actual width. Generally, a 1x10 board actually measures 9 1/4” wide, and a 1x8 board measures 7 1/4” wide. You can also use 3/4” plywood if you’d prefer.
- tape measure
- carpenter’s square
- cordless drill/driver
- table saw or circular saw
- pocket hole jig
- brad nailer or hammer
- safety glasses
- hearing protection
- dust mask
- (2) 1x10 @ 35 1/4” (sides)
- (1) 1x10 @ 24” (top)
- (3) 1x10 @ 22 1/2” (shelves and bottom ripped to 8 1/2” wide)
- (3) 1x8 @ 22 1/2” (cloud fronts)
- (1) 1/4” plywood @ 36” x 24” (back panel)
For specific dimensions and 3D diagrams, download the PDF plans.
Measure and Cut the Pieces
Using the cut list above, measure, mark and cut the boards to length.
Drill the Pocket Holes
Pocket hole joinery involves drilling a pilot hole at a slight angle into one board, then joining it to a second board with a self-tapping screw. Pocket hole joinery is a fast and reliable way to join boards and create a strong joint.
Using a pocket hole jig, drill 3/4” pocket holes into the two sides of the bookshelf. Attach the sides to the top with 1 1/4” pocket screws and wood glue. Whenever possible, try to drill downward and use gravity to your advantage.
Cut the Shelves
Measure, mark and cut the 6' 1x10 board to length for the shelves, then rip the shelves to 8 1/2” wide on a table saw or circular saw.
Attach the Shelves
Drill 3/4” pocket holes into the ends of the shelves and attach them to the sides with 1 1/4” pocket screws and wood glue. Notice that the shelves are flush to the back, to allow space for the cloud fronts.
Optional: Apply Edge Banding
If you’re using plywood, use iron-on adhesive edge banding to hide the raw plywood edges.
Draw the Cloud Shape
Using a round pot or bucket as a guide, trace a cloud shape onto the boards. Don’t worry about perfection here – clouds are whimsical and organic!
Cut Out the Cloud Shape
Use a jigsaw to cut the cloud shape out. Switch out a general purpose blade for a scroll blade on the jigsaw for more control, tighter curves and to minimize tear-out.
Paint the Clouds
Feel free to personalize these shelves. I used my CNC machine to carve the kids’ names on the fronts. Use paint or stencils and get creative!
Attach the Cloud Fronts
Apply glue to the edges of the shelves and attach the cloud fronts with 1 1/4” brad nails.
Attach the Back Panel
Measure, mark and cut 1/4” back panel to size. Attach it to the back of the bookshelf with 1” staples and wood glue.
Fill the finished bookshelf with your kids' favorite books, toys and other treasures.