Make A Cardboard Bookshelf In Less Than A Day

Lucas came up with a real winner when upcycling cardboard to use as a bookshelf. It’s visually pleasing, can be built basically for the cost of glue and a mounting brackets, and you don’t have to feel bad if you decide to get rid of it later on.

What he saved in raw material cost he spent in labor. There are 23 different layers of cardboard that went into the project, not including the spacer squares between each piece. The vast majority of the time spent in the clip after the break shows a fast-time video of him cutting out the layers. It apparently took about eight hours of cutting, and we’d image he’s got a claw of a hand after all of that work.

This is hanging from a single L bracket positioned in the square opening with two nails to keep it level. We’d suggest including a better mounting technique in your design. If you have some ideas about this please let us know in the comments.

8 thoughts on “Make A Cardboard Bookshelf In Less Than A Day

  1. am i the only one that can’t stand the term “upcycling”.. isn’t any recycling technically upcycling because if you don’t recycle whatever it is you’re recycling it’s then just garbage? so by my logic it’s just recycling instead of some stupid hgtv marketing nonsense.

    1. It’s not marketing, it’s a semantic distinction.

      If you take a product or material and convert it to a lower quality/value material or resource, then that’s called downcycling.

      If you take a product or material and increase it’s value or use then that’s upcycling.

      Recycling is just an umbrella term for both sub-groups. If you recycle aluminum or plastic, the quality goes down over time. Most recycling is downcycling over a period of time.

      Upcycling is taking something of low quality or use like cardboard and creating function objects that have some more useful value. Like this project.

  2. Cute, but I’d make sure the wall mounting either uses expanding dry wall anchors or that the hardware makes contact with a stud.

    In college I installed a book shelf that ended up pulling a massive chunk of the lath and plaster down with it. Whoops.

    – Robot

  3. I think I’d go with papier mache or tissue paper and rubber cement to give it a seal and finish. Maybe even sand down the edges and rubber cement them but still..this gave me a great idea for my festival booth….got fridge boxes? lol.

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