Feminist Deed of the Day: I Built a Shelf!

Yes, the Twitter rumors are true, I built a shelf! (And I only chipped one nail doing it!) In an afternoon attempt to do something crafty without adding to the clutter already crowding my tiny apartment, I decided that constructing a shelf was in order.

Constructing and I don't get along. My dad is a structural engineer, and spent endless hours helping me build the Ikea furniture I ordered last year for my apartment. And by helping, I mean DJ-ing/bartending/being an open audience for expletives resulting from mildly comprehensive instruction manuals.

Anyways, after endless hours in my closet-room building the essentials, the shelf was abandoned in the back of my closet.

In my first building attempt I thought I'd outsmart the enclosed screws, using double-sided wall tape to put the brackets on the walls.

Needless to say, I had barely descended from the ladder as the plastic and wood pieces came crashing down, snowing little splinters of white plaster in my hair.

Expletive number one.

I threw away the now un-sticky tape and opened the bag of screws.  This detail may be obvious, but I do not own a screwdriver.  Or a hammer.  Or really anything that one would need to construct something.

I aligned a single screw in a bracket and attempted to screw it in with my fingers.  Nothing.  I pounded on the top of the screw with an aluminum Sigg waterbottle, forcing it into the wall.  Success! I finished screwing it in with a tweezers and an eyebrow scissors and repeated for the second side.  The brackets had room for two screws, but the wooden shelf balanced with just one, so yet again, I had outsmarted Ikea.

I aligned some boots on top and ran out to show my roommate my handiwork. Before I could even Instagram my project, two screws, more plaster snow, and five very stylish pairs of shoes flew off the wall, over my head, and into my bed. Awesome.

Retiring from my short-lived carpentry career, I began stuffing my winter shoes into my storage unit, a far easier task than making more storage space.

As I stuffed in my last pair of boots behind my duffle bag, I found a few screws and other metal things leftover from my dad's furniture building last year.

I ate a cupcake, and climbed the ladder again, this time placing the brackets slightly closer together, and using two screws on each side, following the bottle-hammer, hand-screwing, tweezer-tightening method. I put the board on top, added some folded sweaters, and voila!  The shelf was built, and has stayed up for days!

my shelf