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How to build a tree bookshelf

If you want to add a bookshelf shaped like a tree to your home, here is how to build it! We are giving our son a jungle themed bedroom makeover and decided to build him this DIY tree style bookshelf and toy shelf!

This post was sponsored by Kreg Tool, which offers tools perfect for DIYers trying to improve their homes. Right now, Kreg products are on sale, including $20 off the Kreg K4 used to make this tree bookshelf. All opinions are our own and our opinion is that we love Kreg products. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Charleston Crafted possible!

We are excited to begin diving into Luke’s bedroom makeover.

Remember his jungle themed nursery in our old home? When we asked him what he wanted in his new bedroom, he said “animals!” The kid has loved animals his whole life.

If you follow us on Instagram, you know that Morgan has been painting a jungle themed mural in his bedroom! I can’t wait to share that project when it is done.

DIY tree shaped bookshelf - Charleston Crafted

DIY Tree Shaped Bookshelf

So, designing him a jungle room theme, we decided to build him a tree shaped bookshelf. He loves to read and has tons of books and we loved this idea.


This shelf was inspired by the Babyletto Spruce Tree bookcase.

However, we decided to mimic the feel of that bookshelf but not copy it exactly.

We decided to go for a more simplistic approach and built this shelf out of 1×6 and 2×6 lumber.

Thanks to our Kreg K4, it was super easy to connect the branches and make them super strong.

Final picture of tree shelf

How to build a DIY tree bookshelf

Building a DIY tree bookshelf is about making a custom look of a tree for your space.

You could build this bookshelf just using straight or singular branches off the trunk.

We opted to add interest by adding different angles and additional branches to really mimic the abnormalities of a tree.

We started by cutting the trunk to the height we wanted and notched the bottom to make room for the baseboard.

Close up attaching branch

Then, we cut branches at 10 degree and 30 degree angles so they would come off the trunk.

We added pocket holes with our Kreg K4 on every branch where it connected to the trunk or another branch.

How to build a DIY tree bookshelf

When we had all the branches right where we wanted them, we attached using wood glue and Kreg pocket screws.

Finishing the shelf

The inspiration bookshelf is actually lacquered. To get that look you would want to paint your shelf with a high gloss paint or paint it and finish with a glossy top coat.

We decided that we wanted a more natural look. So, we stained the tree Early American to match the crib we built for him that are next to each other.

Close up of tree shelf

This ties really nicely with the stain on Luke’s crib (another great DIY build!) and the brown in the mural.

Mounting the shelf to the wall

To mount the bookshelf to the wall, we used simple corner brackets and drywall anchors. We also painted them to blend with the wood and wall.

We put two brackets on each side of the trunk to stabilize it to the wall. This is important, because this can look like a tempting ladder to a toddler.

We didn’t do anything to support the branches other than the wood glue and pocket hole joints. We aren’t going to put that much weight on them and they are very solid.

Tree shaped bookshelf

Plans to build this tree bookshelf

You can get the plans to build this bookshelf on The full cut list and step-by-step instructions are available there.

For an overview, check out our how-to card here.

How to build a DIY tree bookshelf
Yield: 1

How to build a DIY tree bookshelf

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Active Time: 2 hours
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours
Difficulty: Medium
Estimated Cost: $10-50

Here's how to build a super cute DIY bookshelf shaped like a tree! This bookshelf is great for toddlers and kids who love nature. Add books and decor items to the branches and let you child explore all day!


  • - (1) 6' 2x6 board
  • - (2) 8' 1x6 boards
  • - 1 1/4" pocket screws
  • - 4 corner brackets
  • - wood glue
  • - stain or paint


  • - Kreg K4 pocket hole jig
  • - Miter saw
  • - Drill
  • - Sander


  1. Cut the trunk board.
  2. Cut branch boards at angles.
  3. Drill pocket holes in branch boards.
  4. Attach branches to trunk with wood glue and pocket screws.
  5. Stain/paint
  6. Attach to wall.
  7. Decorate.

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Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

Kreg 2020 Holiday Sale

Right now, Kreg is having a huge sale, offering big discounts on many of their most popular items.

For instance, you can get the Kreg K4 that we used for this project for only $79 at major retailers!

This is limited, so make sure to get your hands on it!

Luke looking at tree bookshelf

Other bookshelf ideas

Looking for other bookshelf ideas? Here are some tutorials that we have shared:

Looking for something?

We’ve been doing this since 2012 so we have a LOT of blog posts! Search stuff like: Ceiling Projects | DIY Plant Stands | Thrift Flips

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Build A Tree Bookshelf – Free Woodworking

Monday 1st of March 2021

[…] you can build a tree bookshelf for any youngsters room or playroom using the free woodworking plans available at the link. Build it […]

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