Cubby Shelf made from Cupboard Doors

You guys, it is the end of the school year and things are crazy around here!  

Today I am going to share my Cubby Shelf made from Cupboard Doors...
How to make a cubby shelf out of old cabinet doors
Isn't it cute?!  I really love how this project came together, especially because I had all the supplies on!!

I shared this last year as one of my contributor posts at My Repurposed Life.
cute and easy chalkboard labels
And hello?! It has Chalkboard labels, I am pretty much obsessed with how cute they make everything.
wire baskets and cabinet doors
It started with these cupboard doors (free from a friend) and six wire baskets I got at the Restore for $1 each.  I didn't really need these baskets when I picked them up, but I couldn't resist with that price, can you blame me?  Now I am happy I did, I finally found the perfect use for them.
figuring out how to make cubby shelf for wire baskets
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Using the wire baskets and some scrap pieces of wood, I determined how wide to make my shelves.

Once I was able to dig some plywood from my stash of wood to use for making shelves, I set to work.
using Kreg rip cut and K5 pocket hole jig
I used my Kreg Rip-Cut to cut the plywood to size.  Because the plywood was only 1/2'' thick I drilled 1/2 pocket holes with my Kreg K5 Pocket-Hole Jig.
using Kreg right angle clamps
When I build alone it is always a huge help to have my Kreg Right Angle Clamps!  They make it easy to keep every thing together.  In the above photos I am attaching the very bottom shelf to the cupboard door with my 1'' pocket hole screws and glue.
adding shelves and dividers to cubby shelf
I attached my divider piece with glue and pocket hole screws (top left).  I made sure my baskets fit, then added the second shelf (top right).  I only drilled pocket holes into the bottom of my divider pieces.

Then I nailed through the shelf into the divider to secure the top (bottom right) using my Ryobi nail gun.
adding shelves and dividers
Here is a shot of me adding the top support pieces.  I cut my dividers boards a little too short, which left a half inch gap from the top divider to the top of the cupboard doors.  It is always something, no project goes perfectly!

To fix it, I just glued and nailed on another 1/2 strip of plywood over the top support pieces (not pictured).
how to tilt non tilting mounting plates
Mid century modern is one of my constant crushes, so I was happy to use some retro legs and leg mounting plates that I had waiting for a project.

To add a slight tilt to my legs I rigged the mounting plates with some paint stick scraps, lifting up the inside edges.  Totally did the trick!
making a top for a shelf with scrap wood
I took my cupboard door shelf outside so I could figure out what to used for a top.  I finally found some boards that worked.  I ended up with two 2x6's, one 2x4 (that I ripped down to 3'', and one 2x2.

All of them are totally random boards, with different colors, but I was good with it, it will give the top some character. ;)
In order to prep the top board and the legs, I use Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner.  Then I stained them with the same mix that I used on my Shoe Cubby Dresser.
spray painting
I made sure to fill all the holes with spackle and sanded them smooth.  I cut some pieces of chipboard to make a back.  I decided to paint the shelf and back boards before I put them together.

When I made the kids storage bench for my sister in the fall I bought too much spray paint, and finally used what was left on this cubby shelf.
How to add a back with scrap chipboard
After the paint dried I added my chipboard pieces to the back, pre drilling and screwing them on.  I also attached the top boards with glue and 2'' nails (not pictured, nailing into the cupboard doors and support pieces), and last, I screwed the legs into the mounting plates.

Done!  Oh, and I did apply 3 coats of poly to the legs and wood top, sanding with 400 grit between coats 1 and 2.
how to make chalkboard labels for wire crates
Now for the cute chalkboard labels!  I used small scraps of chipboard that were left over from cutting my back pieces and cut them all the same size.  

After taping all the chipboard pieces together and using a wire basket to determine where to drill my holes, I drilled through all six pieces at once.  Then I painted them with chalkboard paint and attached them to the baskets with wire.

After twisting and clipping the wires, I bent them down and applied hot glue to secure them and to cover the sharp edges of the wires.  It worked like a charm!
repurposed cabinet doors
That is a pretty awesome free project don't ya think!  
shelf made from cabinet doors
Even my mismatched top looks pretty cool!  I am happy to give my wire baskets a home, I have had them for over a year...
Create a Cubby Shelf made from Cupboard Doors, full picture Tutorial at MyLove2Create
What about those legs!?  Awww yeah!
Create a Cubby Shelf made from Cupboard Doors, full picture Tutorial at MyLove2Create
I tried to stage this cubby shelf a few different ways to give you an idea of how useful it can be!

Aren't the cupboard door sides so pretty!?  I love repurposing cabinet doors for building because they already have the decorative edge.  

So many possibilities...for example you could triple your shelving like I did with my Cabinet Doors into Children's Desk.  I still love that project, and the X obsession, is part of the reason! 
Create a Cubby Shelf made from Cupboard Doors, full picture Tutorial at MyLove2Create
Of course the ever popular bathroom storage!
Create a Cubby Shelf made from Cupboard Doors, full picture Tutorial at MyLove2Create
I love that this shelf could go in any room in the house!
Create a Cubby Shelf made from Cupboard Doors, full picture Tutorial at MyLove2Create
A last glance a the pretty top!  
Repurposing cabinet doors to make a cubby shelf
Thank you for pinning!

Have you ever repurposed a cupboard door?  I would love to hear what you have created!




  1. please come and share with us at

  2. Since it matches my cute bench, I think you should just send it my way and I'll use it!! 😆 I always need and love a good storage shelf. I think I'd like it in my play room for toy bins. 👍🏼 Always love seeing what you create!!! 😘

  3. I love blue. Love this idea! It turned out wonderfully!!

  4. Hi, Mindy! I love love love this repurposed cabinet door project. I have a small request: I run a small nonprofit classroom where we teach repair, refinishing, and repurposing. We are holding a class in cabinet upcycles next month. May I use your photo as an example? I would of course credit you and link to whichever page or account you would like. You can read about our classroom here: and email me at sburtner at Thanks for your consideration!

    Thank you!


Your comments make me smile! I love to hear what you think!