Shared Kids Room: Update on the New Kids Shelf

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New shelf in the kids’ room (photo:  Modern Nest Photography )

New shelf in the kids’ room (photo: Modern Nest Photography)

I had meant to do an update on adding a shelf to the kids bedroom quite a while ago. I’m glad I didn’t as I think a review of a space change is much better after you’ve lived with it for awhile. And how much better when you’ve been home more than ever before, for the past 3 months ;). I shared a post about removing a larger shelving unit from the kids bedroom HERE . And now I’ll share the details about replacing it with a smaller wall-mounted one.

I wanted to share my thought process for determining which shelf I chose. I had a narrow space to work with between the wall beds and our master closet. A floor to ceiling curtain conceals the closet but I didn’t want to add shelving or a storage unit that was so deep that it caused issues accessing that corner of our closet.

Before settling on the current shelf I considered these alternatives:

CB2 Ladder Shelf
In the end the height of this shelf ruled it out for me as I was trying to match the height of the wall beds. But this is a beautiful versatile shelf that I’ve seen be successful in many spaces, especially small ones.


Ikea Pax

I considered the 13 3/4” deep pax wardrobe as an option as I could corral all their toys in there and close the door and ignore it. But in my experience it is nice to have some toys/things on display. And I wasn’t ready to have everything enclosed in our home. I was worried about everything looking like a cabinet/closet. But you never know I may revisit this option another time.

Impressive hack of an Ikea Pax wardrobe by Jordan of @local_trove

Impressive hack of an Ikea Pax wardrobe by Jordan of @local_trove

Custom Millwork

I felt too indecisive at this moment to invest in built-in millwork. It most certainly would have been the most custom solution and could have provided a mix of open and closed storage but it would also be the most expensive solution.

In the end I settled on the Ikea Svalnas wall mounted shelving unit for a few reasons.


Adjustable Height - because it is wall mounted I could set it where I wanted and match the height to the top of the bunk beds.

Narrow Shelves - the narrowest shelves are 5 7/8” and the deepest shelf is 9 7/8”, so it was one of the most narrow options.

Affordability - I could have saved up for a custom solution but as I was feeling a bit nervous about the whole experiment, I wasn’t ready to commit to an investment solution.

I decided to paint the shelves and gables out white so as not to add another material to their small room. Their room currently has white beds and some birch shelves so I didn’t think the bamboo would be a great addition. Though I do think the bamboo finish is quite nice and used this as a wall unit in my Dad’s home recently. I painted everything with 3 coats of paint with a foam roller before assembling the shelf. Then I added a matte clear coat.

I put the widest shelf at the bottom to hold Mae’s dollhouse so that she is able to pull up a stool to play at it. I initially hoped it would be a desk but anything deeper or wider would block the closet so I feel like this shelf is a great solution.


I’m quite pleased with how the shelf has been working for their room. It does require some tidying and reorganizing but not as much as the larger shelf. I love how the shelf is always changing and that the kids use it to display their favourite things of the moment, including many of their crafts recently. I find if I tidy up the shelf with different toys then they are more likely to be played with. It reconfirms my thoughts that some open shelving is nice to have in a kids room.

Anyway I may change it again in the future but I’m very happy with this change to the space. And hope that maybe some of my rejected ideas might help with your space. Let me know if I missed anything or if you have any questions!

Photo:  Modern Nest Photography

Photo: Modern Nest Photography

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