How to Build Suitcase Shelves, Easy Step by Step

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Last Christmas Dan and the boys got me a gift certificate to one of my favorite antique stores. I pretty much knew right away what I wanted to get with it. I'd been wanting to build suitcase shelves for quite awhile, so it only made sense to use part of it for an old suitcase. We already had the suitcase cabinet, and we had the suitcase table. We definitely needed shelves. Off on the hunt I went.Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project!

It was in the very back of the antique store that I found a booth filled to the gills with vintage suitcases. There were several on a table, underneath the table, under a bird cage, stacked on top of one another, everywhere. I dug and dug until I found what felt like just the right fit for my project. The entire suitcase had a certain charm to it, from the clasps on the front to the hinges on the back.Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project! And the color was neutral but absolutely beautiful. It was a bit roughed up, a part of its character that only adds more charm, in my opinion.

I brought it home, and we got to work, ready to build suitcase shelves that would add even more character and charm to our living area.

Supplies You'll Need to Build Suitcase Shelves

You'll need a few supplies for this DIY project, including the following:

  • 1 old suitcase, preferably a level design
  • Wood
  • Tape measure
  • Sharpie or carpenter's pencil
  • Saw (Sawzall, table saw, hand saw, miter saw)
  • Cutoff tool or grinder
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Screw gun (or screwdriver) and screws

How to Build Suitcase Shelves

First you'll want to clean out your suitcase, removing any unnecessary fabric or metal pieces/framework.Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project!

Measure and cut your suitcase in half in the direction you desire.Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project! We intended to use both the top half and the bottom half of the suitcase as shelves. So, we cut right down the middle using a Sawzall.

Measurements of the wood you plan to use are case by case, since suitcases vary in size, and it will depend what size your suitcase is. Cut pieces of wood, using a table saw or hand saw, to screw to the inside of the suitcase to hold the suitcase halves together. Otherwise, each part will want to flop open.

Build your shelf framework.Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project! This is the piece of wood you'll place on the wall with 3 perpendicular pieces of wood jutting into the suitcase.

To place your suitcase shelves on the wall, attach the framework to the wall. Slide your suitcase half on, and screw the suitcase to the framework from the top down.Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project!

You can watch this video to see the entire process, from start to finish.

Finally, you're ready to decorate your vintage shelves however your heart desires.Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project! It's such an easy DIY project, and they add so much vintage flair to a living area.Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project!

Looking for more thrifty DIY project inspiration?

Can't build them just yet? Pin it for later!

Got an old suitcase just waiting to be used for something special? How to build suitcase shelves, step by step, and hang them up for a vintage decorative look in your home's living space. Vintage home decor DIY project!

4 thoughts on “How to Build Suitcase Shelves, Easy Step by Step”

  1. So cute! I love the way you carried out the vintage theme with accessories. Your tutorial is clear and thorough – I have a pile of old suitcases – time to get out the saw!

    Reply

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