Carpentry, Our Apartments, Projects, Tutorials

Check it out, it’s got Cup Holders! – A Tight corner Nightstand Fix

The layout of our bedroom is a bit too narrow for a nightstand on either side.  We had a black shelf that Beth scored on clearance for $3 at Target that was already in place.  It was mounted on a black painted 2×1 that was screwed into studs on the wall (because, surprise, the hanger on the shelf didn’t match the stud spacing.  Where are designer’s heads?)  Previous to the headboard,  a second shelf was notched into the corner behind it on the adjoining wall creating an L shape.  It was just large enough for a cell phone and glasses.

Early Stages of our Bedroom @
Early Stages of our Bedroom @

But when we installed our headboard, the L shelf needed to go, but Beth still needed a spot for a glass of water and her phone charger, and maybe a book or magazine.  So, I decided to extend a piece from one of the shelves to create a cup holder that would blend in with the line of the shelf and still be functional for her.

DORMIR looks pretty good next to her brother, RASTafari, don’t ya think?

I measured the depth of the shelf and the distance left exposed on the 2×1, then cut a piece of scrap to fit.  I grabbed a tumbler from the kitchen and picked the level that I thought would best wedge into the holder, then measured its circumference with a string.  I calculated the diameter, but could not find a hole saw bit that was small enough
or a spade bit that was large enough.

Cup Holder night stand shelf @

I eventually resigned myself to drawing the circular size on the workpiece with an engineer’s stencil in pencil and, lacking a scroll saw, cutting it straight in half with a band saw (left to right wise, looking at the final product).  I removed the rest of the material with the band saw and joined the two pieces back together with wood glue.  Before anything else, I had used a pocket hole jig to drill pocket holes in what would become the back of the piece for mounting on the 2×1 board.

Cup Holder night stand shelf @

After some spray paint, it was fastened nicely in place with a pair of screws and fit just fine on the first try, which is the real achievement here.  The glued joint has held up fine as well.

Cup Holder Close-up @

A few screws underneath to hold a clear acrylic magazine rack below were all that was needed to finish this little life hack.  Now Beth has a place for her side of the bed too.

Cup Holder night stand shelf @

Have you had your hands on any power tools lately?  What projects are you hoping to get done before winter’s here?

~ Bill