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Sunrise shelf

Projects from Nadia magazine

Display your prettiest items on these ombre-effect shelves and enjoy a beautiful sunrise (or sunset) every day

Project photo

Display shelf

You will need:

  • Long ruler, measuring tape, pencil and eraser, large circular piece of wood or MDF (we used a custom-made 900mm MDF art board, 4mm thick), level and set square
  • 3 pieces wood for the back (we used 19mm-thick offcuts a little shorter in length than the shelves)
  • Wood glue and damp rag
  • 3 x lengths pine for shelves, 2 the same length, 1 longer (ours were 135mm wide x 19mm thick x 700mm/865mm long)
  • Drill and 9 long screws (we used 50mm); see step 6
  • 3 paintbrushes
  • Your choice of Resene colours (we used Resene SpaceCote Low Sheen in Resene Cosmos, Resene Cornflower and Resene New York Pink; for a higher sheen use Resene Lustacryl semi-gloss
  • 2 keyhole picture hangers and screws.


  1. Draw vertical and horizontal guide lines through centre of circle.

  2. Mark where top and bottom shelves will go. Shelves should sit a little inside circle.

  3. Draw the same 3 horizontal lines on the back of the circle.

  4. Draw a line down centre of short edges on each piece of wood for back. Glue each piece onto back of circle, matching up lines on wood and circle. Press firmly, wipe away excess glue with a damp cloth and leave to dry as per glue instructions.

  5. Draw line down centre of short edges on shelves. Glue along back of each shelf and position on front of circle, matching up guide lines on circle and shelf ends; the longest shelf goes in the middle. Press down, wipe and leave to dry as in Step 4.

  6. Drill 3 screws along each piece of wood on back. Screws must be long enough to go right through into shelves, to secure.

  7. Plan the proportions of the ombre effect. We divided it into 3 sections.

  8. Paint top shelf and area above it, and halfway below it, in your lightest colour.

  9. Working with 2 brushes, paint middle section and shelf in your medium colour, blending in gradually with lighter hue above. Repeat for bottom shelf, blending medium colour into your darkest colour.

  10. Once dry, add a second coat if needed. Attach hangers to back of the circle. Measure and drill hanging screws into wall. Hang shelf and style!


Steps 4, 5, 9, 10

Steps 4-5 Steps 9-10


  • The shelves should be set in from the edge of the circle by about 17mm on each side.
  • Paint the ombre effect all in one go as it’s much easier to blend the colours when the paint is wet.
  • For a simpler project, dispense with the wooden circle and attach shelves to the wall. Then simply paint a circular ombre effect on the wall.

Words and styling by Tanya Wong. Photography Rebekah Robinson. 2018

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Projects from Nadia magazine
View more project ideas from Nadia magazine in the Resene weekend DIY projects section.

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