Jul 09, 2014

How to: Make a Rustic Modern Storage Shelf from Hardware Store Materials

created at: 07/09/2014

I'll never turn down an opportunity to share a clean-yet-rustic furniture project made entirely from easy-to-find materials from your local home improvement center. This piece, the XX Shelf, was designed by Japanese artist Naoya Matsuo, and "is taken from his 'Less Machine, More Hand' collection, which focuses on DIY store materials and low-tech tools for production." The project comes from the new book from Laurence King Publishers,  DIY Furniture 2 by Christopher Stuart.

'The shelves have simple components: just one sheet of plywood cut into three, four wooden dowels, and two strips of polypropylene tape. The tape strips, which act as a design accent, form braces to keep the structure stable. Naoya exhibited XX as one of three pieces of knock-down furniture at the Stockholm Furniture Fair in 2011. Every time he exhibits in foreigh countries, he designs knock-down pieces and carries them all by hand to save costs."

created at: 07/09/2014

Editor's Note: this project has been translated from the metric system to standard measurements. Different hardware and materials are available in North America than in Europe and Japan. (For example, the original project called for 1/6" nails. You're not likely to find those at your neighborhood hardware store). In the U.S., "polypropylene tape" is called nylon webbing, and you can find it in the hardware store (as cargo straps) or in your local outdoor store, where it's used for climbing and mountaineering.


  • 4x 36" long wooden dowels, 1 1/8" diameter
  • 2x lashing straps, 1" wide, 65" long 
  • One sheet of plywood, at least 36x36"
  • 12x M4 (or 3 1/16") nails, 2 1/2" long
  • 6x M4 (or 3 1/16") nails, 1" long
  • 18x appropriately-sized plastic caps for nails


  • Scissors
  • Hammer
  • Saw
  • Electric Drill
  • 1 1/4" hole saw or Forstner bit

created at: 07/09/2014


created at: 07/09/2014

created at: 07/09/2014

created at: 07/09/2014


More about DIY Furniture 2: 

DIY Furniture 2 features thirty new designs by leading and up-and-coming designer-makers from around the world. Building on the international success of Stuart’s previous book, DIY Furniture 2 employs easy-to-follow techniques for making unique furniture designed by high-end, professional designers. Including conceptual pieces and contemporary designs, the book features projects that can be easily assembled using readily available materials easily sourced from any hardware store.

Each project celebrates simple, modern, and functional design. Arranged by level of complexity, each project includes diagrams with easy-to-follow instructions. The book is organized by shelves and storage, tables and desks, seating, lighting, bedroom, outdoor and misc. Illuminating profiles of each designer and body of work rounds out the book. Fully sustainable and highly original, these projects will challenge today’s makers and DIYers to think about common materials in an entirely new light. Available now. Grab a copy at our affiliate, Amazon.com. 


Thanks to Laurence King for allowing us to publish this sample project. Learn more about their art and design titles here. 


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