The Backpack Wall

My children’s brains: enter house, drop wet backpack in entryway, proceed to fridge, what even is a homework

**Now updated with a helpful-ish supply list and step-by-step… uh… steps**

I was perusing Pinterest for the meaning of life, aka storage and organization ideas, and/or survival tips for raising three boys. No luck there, but I did find this.

Once my wheels were turning (my husband LOVES it when that happens*), I realized that the corner between my kitchen and family room was four feet of empty, wasted space.

*he does not love it

I sketched out a design with graph paper and *mumbles under breath* PowerPoint, taking into account my number of offspring and that stupid outlet. (Whoever thought those bin shelves would be [a] useful or [b] attractive was incorrect.) (That’s me, I was incorrect.)

IMG_0985s IMG_0987s

Here are the supplies I needed:

  • About 2 days, coffee, snacks and a helpful and patient life partner (optional, but highly recommended)
  • 1×6″ wood planks (mine used five pieces cut to 48″ long)
  • 1×3″ wood pieces (about 60″ worth was used for the 4 vertical dividers and another 60″ across the the top as a shelf)
  • Hooks with accompanying screws (I used 3 hooks)
  • Screwdriver and screws (they should be long enough to get through your wood, 1/2″ of drywall and into a stud)
  • Drill and countersink bit for pilot holes
  • Wood putty, putty knife, sandpaper
  • Paint and various accompanying painty stuffs
  • Basic tools like a level, measuring tape, stud finder, etc.
  • (And he used a li’l oscillating saw to cut the base molding and quarter round from the wall)


–> Next, here’s how we built it –>


123 thoughts on “The Backpack Wall

    1. Funny story – So I was driving home one day, and they were remodeling this building, and a whole bunch of wood pieces were outside in the parking lot with a sign that said FREE. So um, yeah. I got it on the side of the road.

  1. I love this! What kind of frame did you use for your engineering print? Also what was he total cost of the project? Thank you for the inspiration and help!

    1. Tee hee, the “frame” is black electrical tape!!!
      I honestly can’t remember the total cost of this project, but it was just wood, nails, hooks, caulk and paint…

    1. Hi there! I’m glad you like it!! It’s been a minute since I did this, but I believe the width is 48″ and we used a 1×2 (so it’s not so much a “shelf” as a delineating piece of wood that has very little function).

  2. Hi Bethany,

    I’m currently working on a roundup for a client featuring backpack organization. I will be including a link to your post The Backpack Wall, it’s BEAUTIFUL!

    I wanted to request permission to use one image from the post in the roundup, which will link back to your post as well. Your content will not be duplicated in any way.

  3. I know i am late to seeing this post, but this is so great! Also, what kind of tool is picture where your hubby is cutting through the trim? I need that in my life.

    1. LOL! It’s called an oscillating tool, and there are a couple different kinds of attachments, so it’s a pretty versatile tool to have! Thanks for stopping by and commenting!! 🙂

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