Christmas was fast approaching, and as usual, I was in need of a gift idea for our family exchange. Each year, my siblings and I throw our names into a hat and pick names. And each year, we spend the weeks leading up to Christmas trying to figure out who has who, when we really should be spending that time coming up with a gift idea. Last year, my younger brother Jeff was the lucky recipient of a homemade, wooden beer caddy. And this year, it was Matt’s turn – my older, sometimes wiser, business-owning brother. And because I know that he’s always fair game for a good bottle of wine, I thought that some sort of wine rack would be just the ticket.
After a bit of research, I found a few ideas that I kind of blended together and molded into my own. A wine rack with five shelves that would be nailed to the wall. A piece that could be used either at home or in his new office. Because this concept could actually be multi-purposed (say, as a knick-knack shelf, or spice rack), I decided to simultaneously make another one for my mom that could be used in her new kitchen, once my parents complete their remodel.
Let’s get to work
Materials needed: Oak 1x4x8, 1x6x8, and 1/2x2x4.
First thing’s first – cut the pieces. The backboard piece was the 1×6, cut to 36 inches. And each of the shelves were made from the 1×4, cut down to 5 inches each. The smaller board was also cut to 5 inches, as that would be the “face” of the shelf.
Once all the cuts were made, Dan helped by running the pieces through his router using a beveled edge, which gave each of the wine racks a nice and rounded, completed look.
Now that the detail work was complete, it was time to put it all together. We used wood glue and our brad nailer to connect the small “faces” to the front of the shelves, and then followed the same process when adding the shelves to the “backboard.” A few wood screws for extra support, and we were all set.
All that was left to do was decide on stain colors that I thought my brother and mom would like. Coincidentally, Dan and I have 10-15 different sample cans of stain in our basement, so the choices were all-but-unlimited. I ended up going with Zar’s Moorish Teak for Matt, and Minwax’s Honey for my mom. A bit darker to match the rustic look of Matt’s office space, and a lighter, warmer color to match the wood work in my parent’s house. A few coats of poly, and they were looking good.
I should also add that it took me a second to figure out how best to actually have these hang on the wall, since it was a gift and I wouldn’t be the one doing it myself. After a few suggestions, I went with small french cleats that essentially fit like a puzzle piece and lock the wine rack into place on the wall. To make sure that it was balanced, Dan suggested that we add a small piece of leftover 1/2×2 to the bottom, allowing the rack to be flush against the wall.
The final touch on the wine racks were small metal label holders on the front of each shelf, which helped to add a bit of character to them.
And there you have it. Checking off another year of Christmas DIY, and another gift that hopefully my brother and mom will enjoy. Whether using it as a wine rack or a knick-knack holder, I like this piece so much that I’m probably going to have to make one for myself.