Build a Boat Bookshelf – Great Addition to Any Living Room

Bring the beach into your home through this boat bookshelf!
Bring the beach into your home through this boat bookshelf!

Most people opt for the standard bookshelf. There’s nothing wrong with that, of course. But some kids have their own preferences. They don’t want something “boring” – and for them, the typical bookshelf falls under that category.

If you have children who are passionate about reading, you may want to consider letting them choose their own bookshelf. Some kids have very specific preferences and may not be satisfied with a standard bookshelf. Allowing them to pick out their own bookshelf can help them feel more invested in their reading experience. Plus, it can be a fun way to let their personality shine through in their bedroom or playroom.

I can see where they’re coming from – who wants a dull bookshelf when you could have something that’s both stylish and practical? I get that it’s about more than just looks, but in today’s market, you need to be able to appeal to potential buyers on all levels. And let’s be honest, a beautiful bookshelf is going to do that a lot more effectively than a plain one.

A boat bookshelf will surely be a standout piece in any room.
A boat bookshelf will surely be a standout piece in any room.

If you love the beach but can’t always make it there, bring the beach to you with this DIY boat bookshelf. Perfect for a child’s bedroom or any room with a nautical theme, this bookshelf is easy to make and is sure to add a touch of beachy charm to your home.

If you have some old pallets lying around, why not put them to good use and turn them into a boat bookshelf? This will surely be a standout piece in any room, and it’s a great way to upcycle those old pallets into something new and unique.

Take a look at the gallery below and see some great examples of boat bookshelves.


  • roll of construction paper
  • 1/2 of a sheet of 3/8 inch beaded oak plywood
  • 1/2 of a sheet of 1/4 inch oak plywood (finished on both sides)
  • 1/2 of a sheet of 1/2-inch birch plywood
  • 10 ft of 3/4 inch oak
  • wood glue
  • staples
  • nails
  • the stain of your choice


  • Reciprocating saw with a carbide blade
  • jig saw
  • sander
  • belt sander
  • mitre saw
  • drill
  • clamps
  • staple gun
  • finish nailer

Steps to make your own boat bookshelf:

Before beginning this boat bookshelf project, you will need to gather some pallets. You can use a reciprocating saw with a carbide blade to make quick work of cutting the pallets into pieces. Keep in mind that you will need to cut through any nails that are holding the pallets together. Once you have your pallets cut into the desired pieces, you are ready to begin your project.

Next, you will need to cut the pieces for the sides of your boat bookshelf. You can use either a mitre saw or a table saw, but the pieces should be at least seven or eight inches long. Make sure that you use a sharp blade when cutting, as this will help to prevent any jagged edges. Once you have cut the pieces, you can sand them down to create a smoother finish.

To begin, lay five pieces of uncut pallet wood down in a row, making sure they are all 19-inches wide. Next, use some brackets to secure the wood to the backside. Be sure to use the appropriate nails so that you don’t end up nailing your workpiece down to the table. This will serve as the base of your boat bookshelf!

Once you have the base for your boat bookshelf, you can draw a boat shape from it and attach the side part you cut out earlier. You will now have the basic structure for your boat bookshelf. If you want you can add extra shelves and some more decoration to your boat, you can paint it or add some stickers. You could also add some extra details like a mast or sails. Be creative and have fun with it!

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Thanks to Jonathan Ellis for this great project. You can get step-by-step instructions here…



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