New Bedroom Closet Shelves

One of the things that would not work for us was the small closets on either side of the bed in our new RV. They are designed for hanging clothes. I can't speak for others who RV full time but we don't have many items that need to be on hangers. There is a drawer under the bed on either side for clothes storage but we needed more than that. Socks, underwear, tee-shirts, and shorts make up my wardrobe most of the time. One or two pair of pants for special occasions.

It became obvious that we would need more shelf space. After seeing Matt & Diana (from Adventurous Way) add shelves, I knew that's what we wanted.

The entire project took a couple of days. I did some imagineering (that's Disney speak) in my head figuring out just how I would put in shelves that would:

1) Be lightweight but sturdy enough to hold up a layer of clothes up to 5 inches in depth.

2) Be semi-permanent but removable in case we needed the space for something else.

I picked up the materials at a Lowes Home Improvement Center.

1 – 2x4 foot sheet of ¼ inch finished plywood

1 – 2x2 foot sheet of ¼ inch finished plywood

1 – 1x3x8 foot piece of Oak trim

About 40 #10 wood screws

We already had wood glue.

I cut the plywood into 4 pieces 14.5x24 inches for the shelves. I will be cutting them to length later as I fit them into place. The back of the closet is curved since it is the cap on the front of the trailer.

I ripped the Oak piece into 2 1.5 inch strips 8 feet long. I then cut 4 14.5 inch pieces for the leading edge of each shelf. I reserved the rest of the oak for support blocks. I did have the use of a table saw for this next step. I cut a ¼ inch dado (slot) into the Oak pieces and fit the leading edge of the shelves into the slots. I actually used a regular blade but made several passes to cut the dado to ¼ inch. I sanded the edges of the shelves as well as the edges of the oak pieces. Once I glued the shelves in place in the dado's, I left them to dry overnight.

The remainder of the oak was cut into 2 inch pieces to be used for support blocks. I pre-drilled pilot holes for the wood screws to aid in the installation. Inserting screws into the blocks at this time would be a real time saver.

All of the cut material was then sanded to clean up the edges. Tina did a great job with that. The last thing to do was measure the depth of each shelf and trim the back edge to fit.

Here you can see the shelves in place. I made a compromise between weight and strength. Each shelf will only need to hold a couple of pounds at best. Now the hard part. Trying to figure out how to pack the shelves in a useful way can be a real challenge. My thoughts are to place the off season cloths in the back and the current season in the front.

This was a simple project that can increase the storage space and help manage your small clothing items. I hope this made sense and you find it useful.

Roger & Tina