Do It! How to Build Locker-Style Storage
By: Danny Lipford
A locker-style storage system begins with the design of the locker sides themselves.
We’re using cabinet-grade half-inch plywood for these pieces. The dimensions will vary with your location and needs.
Here we wanted ours to be level with the top of the door so that determined our height. The top is 11-and-1/4 inches wide and the bottom is 16 inches wide.
The curve we are creating to create a transition between those widths is strictly for looks.
Once you create one side panel, it can be used as a template to draw the others so they are identical.
Pulling a level chalk line across the wall, at the top of the door frame, establishes the tops of the lockers so the first side piece is attached to the wall at that level.
A 1-by-2 cleat is attached along the chalk line to support the top shelf. Each locker section will be 32 inches wide so we’re attaching another 1-by-2 vertically at each stud location.
The side pieces are marked and notched to accommodate the baseboard and horizontal cleats before they are attached to the vertical cleats.
Once the side pieces are set, we can begin adding horizontal cleats to help support the individual shelves.
I’m turning these 1-by-2’s on their side so later they will disappear behind the 1-by-2s that will trim out the face of the unit.
All of the upper shelves are made from 1-by-12s so they match the 11-and-1/4-inch dimension.
The bottom shelf or bench seat is 16 inches wide so it’s a piece of three-quarter-inch cabinet-grade plywood.
As more and more shelves are added, the unit becomes stronger and tighter. Finally, adding the 1-by-2 banding across the fronts of the shelves cleans up the look and adds extra strength.
If you want to add hooks below some shelves, you may want to make the cleats there wider or, in some cases, leave out a shelf to customize a section, as we did for cleaning supplies.
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