Build a Storage Shelf in the Wall & Save Counter Space

Control bathroom countertop clutter by building a storage shelf in your wall, between the studs | how to build a shelf in your wall | store toothbrushes above the counter

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When I started planning our main bathroom refresh a few months ago, one of the first requirements in my plans was that I needed a way to de-clutter our countertop.  This bathroom is where all four members of our family shower, brush our teeth, and do all of that daily bathroom business.

budget bathroom before

Needless to say, the countertop was always filled with toothbrushes as different kinds of toothpaste for the kids and the adults.  I’m certainly not a neat freak, but this tooth gear mayhem bothered me.

I knew it wouldn’t be realistic to store our toothbrushes under the sink.  I’m the first to admit that I’m a bit lazy at keeping things tidy, so bending down, opening the childproof cabinet door, and putting away my toothbrush and toothpaste just wasn’t a realistic option.  And if I couldn’t even train myself to do this, there was no way I was going to be consistent enough to train my kids either.

Instead, I decided to cut right into my wall instead, and build a recessed storage shelf right between the studs!  I chose to put it on the wall right next to the door, so you can’t actually see it unless you are in the bathroom.

Control bathroom countertop clutter by building a storage shelf in your wall, between the studs | how to build a shelf in your wall

I started by sawing right through the drywall with a jab saw.  I’ve cut through my fair share of drywall, but I’ll admit that I never did it correctly until using this type of saw.  Steak knives just don’t work as well as this puppy.  When I cut, I made sure to saw right along the edges of the studs, so I could get the most possible amount of space between the studs for my shelf.

how to build a storage hole in your wall

Then, I used some 1 x 4 pieces of wood from my scrap pile to make the bottom and top of the shelf.  I just measured the distance between the studs and cut the boards down to that measurement.  To attach the boards to the studs, I used my Kreg Jig K4 Pocket Hole System to drill the recessed holes and then screwed the self drilling Kreg screws into those holes and into the stud.

build a recessed shelf in your wall

I used pine bead board panels to line the inside of the shelf, because they were the perfect width to fit inside the opening.  You could also rip down some pieces of 1/4″ plywood to the depth of your opening.

I attached all of the panels with an air nail gun.  The back panels are just nailed into the plywood of the other wall (but of course they aren’t long enough to stick out through the other side).  The side, bottom, and top panels are nailed into the studs and wood.

the best way to whitewash wood | how to get a weathered wood look | DIY weathered wood

I used my whitewashed weathered wood tutorial to match the planked wall I installed on the wall of the bathroom.

use the space between your studs for storage

I built a frame out of some old cedar barn wood and cut the ends at 45 degree angles with a miter saw.  Then, I nailed it into the studs.

Control bathroom countertop clutter by building a storage shelf in your wall, between the studs | how to build a shelf in your wall | store toothbrushes above the counter

I found these glass jars at a thrift store awhile back and liked the measurements on the side, but didn’t actually have a plan for them.  These metal plumbing braces fit around the jars perfectly.

Control bathroom countertop clutter by building a storage shelf in your wall, between the studs | how to build a shelf in your wall | store toothbrushes above the counter

The vintage cheese crate holds our tubes of toothpaste, and now our countertop is clutter free!

barn light in bathroom | Vintage Rustic Industrial Bathroom Makeover for $200

I’d love for you to pin this post to hopefully inspire others!

Control bathroom countertop clutter by building a storage shelf in your wall, between the studs | how to build a shelf in your wall | store toothbrushes above the counter

Clearly, I changed a whole lot in this bathroom, including adding a DIY concrete countertop on top of my old one, installing a planked wall, and bringing in a lot of vintage touches.

You can check out those posts by clicking on the images below.

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Pink When | DIY Show Off | Making it in the Mountains | Refresh Restyle | Huckleberry Love | Finding Silver Pennies | Dwelling in Happiness | The Crowned Goat | 2 Bees in a Pod | Cedar Hill Farmhouse | My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia | Kammy’s Korner | Home Stories A to Z | The DIY Dreamer | Saavy Southern Style | Dandelion Patina | Gingersnap Crafts | Knick of Time | Posed Perfection | Live Laugh Rowe | Canary Street Crafts | Addison Meadows Lane | Blue i Style | Craftberry Bush | The Girl Creative | Little Miss Celebration | Redoux Interiors | Sew a Fine Seam | Craftaholics Anonymous | Dagmar’s Home | Tatertots & Jello | Funky Junk Interiors | House of Hipsters | Confessions of a Serial DIYer | Not Just a Housewife | Remodelaholic | Thrifty Decor Chick | C’mon Get Crafty | Oh My Creative | Our House Now a Home | Natasha in Oz

21 thoughts on “Build a Storage Shelf in the Wall & Save Counter Space

  1. Oh I need this badly!!!!!! We have almost 0 counter space in my master bathroom and I have been wanting to do this!! I pinned so I can remember. I would love it if you would stop by Paintyourselfasmile.com and share your wall shelf with everyone at Celebrate Your Story link party! – wishing you a blessed week – Jenny
    Jenny Kavanagh recently posted…Celebrate Your Story! Link Party 3/21My Profile

  2. I love this idea!! I am in the process of redoing our cottage and I just may be cutting a hole in a the wall to clear off the counter-you did an awesome job!! Quick question…I pinned and saved your concrete counter top tutorial also, and want to do the same thing at my house in town and I am wondering how yours is holding up?
    Thank you for the great ideas you have been giving me.

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