Normally, putting a set of shelves in a corner means deciding which part of the room you want them to face. But this unit is far from normal! Its clever design creates an illusion that the shelves are twisted. No matter where you’re standing, the display will always face you.
Gather your supplies
• 2400 x 1200 x 15mm furniture-grade plywood (3)
• Wood putty, to match
You’ll also need
Straightedge; clamps; power saw; combination square; handsaw; 50mm wood screws; 3mm drill bit; drill; PVA glue; sandpaper; varnish (we used Cabot’s Cabothane Clear); stain and varnish (we used Cabot’s Stain and Varnish in black); brush.
• Top, bottom and shelves (6) 570 x 570mm
• Sides (2) 1750 x 490mm
• Right back 1750 x 585mm
• Left back 1750 x 600mm
• Plinth front and back 465 x 100mm
• Plinth sides (2) 500 x 100mm
1. All joints are glued and screwed unless otherwise indicated. When screwing, pre‑drill holes.
2. Check all components against actual unit as it is being built before cutting to size.
3. Make cuts by clamping the straightedge to the plywood to guide the base plate of the saw, making sure the blade is on the waste side of the cutting line.
Step 1 To create 1 side with triangular cut-out, cut down a sheet of plywood to produce a piece that is 1750mm long. Along 1 short edge, measure and mark 80mm and 490mm at the other short edge. Draw a line to join these marks and cut.
Step 2 To mark out triangular cut-out, set combination square so end of ruler is 80mm from body of square. With a pencil at end of rule, run square along edges to mark out triangle on inside.
Step 3 To cut out triangle, line up power saw on straightedge and pull back guard on saw. Start it, then plunge it down to cut plywood. Run
saw along straightedge, stopping at corner of triangle. Repeat for other sides of triangle. Use handsaw to finish off cuts on corners. Using rest of cut sheet of plywood, repeat Steps 1-3 to create second triangle.
Step 4 Mark out shelf positions on 1 side. Along long edge on inside face of side, measure from 490mm wide endand make a mark at 15, 415,430, 780, 795, 1120, 1135, 1435, 1450 and 1735mm. At each mark, square a line across side to angled edge. This will be left-hand side of unit. Repeat on other side, this time measuring and marking from 80mm wide end. This will be right-hand side
Step 5 From 1 end of new plywood sheet, measure 573mm and mark a square line across sheet. Using power saw, cut across full width of sheet. Take piece you have cut off and cut across twice to make two 573mm square shelves. Repeat on rest of plywood sheet to cut all shelves.
Step 6 From a corner of 1 shelf, measure 490mm along 1 edge and mark. From opposite corner, measure 80mm along adjacent edge and mark. Join these marks and cut along line. Repeat on another shelf, swapping measurements on edges to create a mirror image of first. These will be top and bottom pieces of unit.
Step 7 To cut angles on shelves, lay sides flat and butted together with marks for shelf positions facing up. At top shelf position, measure from long edge to angled edge, taking shortest measurement. Transfer this measurement to a shelf, measuring from a corner along 1 edge. At corresponding shelf position take longest measurement and transfer to adjacent side of shelf, starting from opposite corner. Join these marks and cut along line. Repeat this process down the unit for other shelves. They will all be different.
Step 8 On the final sheet of plywood, cut left and right back pieces to size. Screw together to form an ‘L’ shape 600mm square. Measure and mark shelf positions inside this assembly using measurements in Step 4. To locate screw positions on outside of back assembly, drill through middle of each shelf position at 3 points along each side of the ‘L’. Working 1 at a time, place top, bottom and each of shelves in their correct position. Screw through back to secure as you go. Complete 1 side of ‘L’ before rotating unit to complete the other.
Step 9 Place 1 side on unit and screw into shelves. Screw through the back into the side to secure. Rotate unit to attach other side in the same way.
Step 10 Cut plinth pieces, then screw together to form a rectangular box 465 x 530mm in size. Screwing through bottom shelf, fix plinth to unit leaving 25mm gap at the back.
Step 11 Fill screw holes on sides with matching wood putty. Leave to dry, then sand smooth. Sand all cut edges. Remove dust, then apply 3 coats of clear finish to
entire unit, except front faces of sides. On these, apply 3 coats of stain and varnish. Allow to dry and sand between coats.
The lines on the exposed plywood edge help to highlight the shapes of the side panels. When applying stain, be sure to leave these areas bare.