Free Woodworking Plans to Build The Door for a Single Hemnes Bookshelf

06.18.11 By //

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If you liked the plan we covered yesterday, which can be found here, this will so nicely compliment it and add something special to a very simple bookcase.  To purchase the bookshelf, it will cost you $130 plus shipping and tax if you aren’t close to an IKEA. To build the shelf it will cost an estimated $50-$75 and most likely will come in closer to $50 than $75. Now, if you want to purchase the shelf with a glass door…well that price shoots up by $100 to $230 for this single simple bookshelf. Well that by my standards is not an easy price to swallow. So, with these free diy plans you can add a “glass door” using acrylic inserts and it will increase your building cost by around $40, and perhaps less than $30! Now that, is more my speed, and financial wherewithal. How bout you?



Tape Measure



Kreg Jig – this is optional but will make some of your connections much much easier…recommended. You might also use a router with tongue and groove or mortise and tennon creating jigs or bits. Even a dowel jig would be perfectly fine. You need something to create the door which I have constructed below in similar fashion to a face frame.

Saw – Optional if you have your local lumber supply cut your boards.

Router or Table Saw – optional as you can use mirror clips, but you may also use these tools to create grooves to insert your panels into.


2 – 1×2 at 8’


**Clear Acrylic Sheeting – this is the best price I found here. You just need to be sure that if you plan on buying a single sheet to cover both panels, that the sheet is at least 27”x 44 1/2”. Obviously anything that comes closest to that will keep you from spending more or wasting more, just don’t go under.

Plastic Cutting Tool – like this one here

**8 – 12 Mirror Clips – optional and only necessary if you aren’t using a router to create a groove for the insert.

Hinges in a style and type you prefer.

Wood Glue

Wood Filler

Sanding Supplies

Finishing Supplies

Cut List 

2 – 1×2 at 69 1/2” Stiles

3 – 1×2 at 13” Rails

1 – Acrylic Panel at 13 1/2” x 21 1/2” if using mirror clips. This will be smaller if you are using a rabbeting  bit or a straight bit, even the groove portion of a tongue and groove router bit combo. Lots of options here.

1 – Acrylic Panel at 13 1/2” x 44 1/2” same as above and will be smaller if you do not use mirror clips.


Before beginning to build, always check in on my site to make sure you have the most up to date set of plans, I occasionally update and change the plans to make the building process easier or to allow for less expensive purchasing of materials!

Read through the entire set of instructions and all comments before beginning this project. If you print out or save plans, be sure to check in on my site to be sure you have the most up to date set of plans, as I occasionally update things for ease of building or buying. If you are new to building, read through the GETTING STARTED section and other articles found under the BUILD tab in the menu on my site, it has valuable information about how to get started, tools and techniques. If you are unfamiliar with the finishing process, visit my Finishing school for some tips and tricks for painting like a pro and for special finishing practices.

Use glue to secure your joints and Consider Painting or Staining individual sections prior to assembling. This makes the paint application virtually flawless. Coat with a spray on Poly or Wipe on Poly to protect your finish and your piece and it will last for ages. Adhere to all safety standards and guidelines, and be sure you follow safety protocol throughout your build. If you are unsure about whether you are building safely, run a quick online search for the tool or technique you are using, or contact me via email or post to the forum before you move ahead. My contact info can be found in the menu of my site.

Step 1

Step 1 

Build your Door Frame: Use your pocket hole system set for 3/4” stock and your 1 1/4” pocket hole screws and glue. If you aren’t using a pocket hole system, use 3” screws and glue or any other mortise and tennon or doweling process you prefer. Place your pocket holes in the rails to secure.

Step 2

Step 2 

Attach the Acrylic Panel: You will likely want to cut your sheet using an plastic cutting tool like this here. If you will be securing on the backside using mirror clips, you will cut to the dimensions below and secure. If you will be using a router to create a groove, you will need to cut your panels to the dimensions of the opening plus the dimensions of your groove. This will depend on the exact bit you are using.

Step 3

Step 3 

Hang your door: Follow the instructions that accompany your particular hinge. You may need to mortise out the area under the hinge, but this will depend on the style and type you choose.

Fill and Screw, Nail or Pocket Holes, Sand and Finish as Desired. For Finishing Tips and Tricks visit my Finishing School


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**Disclaimer: Some rights reserved. Private use only. Feel Free to link to any of my plans so long as you provide an adequate link back to the appropriate post! Plans from this page are not to be used for commercial purposes or republished without the express written consent of Rayan Turner, The Design Confidential I hope to provide accurate plans, however, I cannot guarantee each plan for accuracy. Not every plan that I post has been built and tested, so you are building at your own risk. It is recommended that you have a clear understanding of how the project works before beginning any project. Please contact me if you find an error or inaccuracy so that I might fix it.

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