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Indulge in shelf-care

Project ideas and inspiration from Good magazine

Create a bath shelf with Resene, where all the necessities for a relaxing soak are right at your fingertips.

How to create a bath shelf

You will need

Step by step instructions

Step 1:  Lay down your drop cloth. Depending on the state of the wood you’ve selected, you may need to strip old paint prior to sanding. Sand the wood using an electric sander or fine grit sandpaper, sanding with the grain to thoroughly remove any previous varnish or imperfections. Use a damp cloth to remove the dust particles from your board.

Step 2:  Measure the outside width of your bath and mark this measurement on your board with a pencil. Our piece of wood measured 240mm wide x 765mm long. Use a drop saw or handsaw to cut the board along this line.

Step 3:  If you have a router, use it around the edges of your board to soften them. (This is an optional step and is fine to skip if you do not have a router.)

Bath shelf - Step 1
Step one

Bath shelf - Step 1a
Step one (a)

Bath shelf - Step 2
Step two

Bath shelf - Step 3
Step three

Step 4:  Using an offcut piece of wood, measure and cut out two pieces that will be used underneath the board as stoppers. These will prevent the board from slipping off the bath. Make your pieces slightly shorter than the width of your board, so that they are inset slightly. Our pieces measured 40mm wide x 200mm long, which left a 2cm gap on either side. Pre-drill two holes with even spacing in each piece of wood.

Step 5:  Measure the lip of your bath and mark this measurement underneath your board, from the right-hand edge. Line the right-hand edge of your offcut piece up with the line you’ve just marked. Secure this to your board using wood screws through the holes that you have pre-drilled. Make sure that the screws are long enough to go all the way through your small piece of wood and into the main board below. Repeat these steps on the other end of the board.

Step 6:  Using a synthetic paintbrush or speedbrush, apply Resene Colorwood in Breathe Easy to the top and sides of the board, making sure to apply evenly to achieve uniform colour. Once completely dry, flip the board over and apply Resene Colorwood Breathe Easy to the bottom. One coat may be enough depending on the colour of your wood, however we decided to apply two coats to achieve a lighter look.

Step 7:  Once the stain is completely dry, apply Resene Aquaclear waterborne urethane varnish in Satin to the entire board. Allow the urethane to dry completely before applying subsequent coats – this usually takes at least 2 hours. You need 3-4 coats in total. Ensure the bath shelf is always wiped dry at the end of bathing.

Bath shelf - Step 4
Step four

Bath shelf - Step 5
Step five

Bath shelf - Step 6
Step six

Bath shelf - Step 7
Step 7


Resene Colorwood Breathe Easy

Project by Shani Luckman. Photography by Amanda Reelick. Feb 2023

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