This was my first project from a list of many...so simple, it was perfect for getting started after a long winter's rest.
Thank you Ana for the plan! I really wanted the floating shelves from Pottery Barn, but they were super pricey. I searched out the fancy hardware that PB uses to mount them and it would have cost as much for the mounting hardware alone than to buy them finished from Pottery Barn.
These shelves were an easy solution for the same look, without the hassle of having to build a sleeve to fit over cleats like other more seamless designs.
For my ledges, I chose to use 1x3s instead of 1x4s for the rear and base of the ledges. I didn't want them to protrude from the wall as far, nor did I want the rear of the ledges to be as visible (I'm wierded out by the contrast of the thick, dark line behind the pics. I would have chosen 1x2s for the back, but I didn't think it would be sturdy enough and it might be a little trickier to drill. I measured them to be a little smaller than the length of my sofa and they turned out just right. I built them in an hour or two and brought them in and stained them on my kitchen counter ( placed waxed paper underneath). It was February and too cold to do outside.
The best advice I have is to be really choosy about the lumber you buy. The "top choice," as they call it, should be renamed "crappiest choice." I guess that's what you get for cheap pine, right!
It fit just right for my budget and it was worth sifting through to make sure I wasn't getting a piece that was warped or twisted. I live in an old house and I'm sure the walls aren't exactly even (as you can see in the pic, the floor even slants a little to the right) but one of my ledges is not fully flush against the wall on one side because the board bows out a little (or maybe my wall bows in?).
Whatever. I'm thrilled with the look and love how I can display so many pics at one time. I'm thinking I want to put at least 4 pictures in each frame, and rotate them out seasonally. That way my display will go with the season. Yep, I'm a genius like that, hehe.