Shoe Dresser

shoe storage entryway
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A narrow tilt out shoe storage unit that looks like a console table, acts like an entire shoe closet! Special thanks to Niki for sharing her photo.

shoe storage entryway
Dimensions are shown above.


Shopping List
  • 4 – 1×8, 8 foot length
  • 2 – 1×6, 8 foot length
  • scrap 2x2s for the feet
  • 3 – 1×2, 8 foot length
  • 4 – 3/8″ wood dowel pins, 1 1/2″ long or two sets of traditional hinges
  • 2″ screws or 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws
  • 1 1/4″ self tapping screws
  • 2″ brad nails
  • wood glue
  • 4 magnetic cabinet clasps
  • knobs or pulls
  • A used fabric belt or strap
  • Finishing Supplies
Cut List
  • 4 – 1x8s @ 47″ Door Faces (measurements differ from diagrams to conserve boards)
  • 1 – 1×8 @ 47 1/4″ Middle Shelf (measurements differ from diagram to conserve boards)
  • 2 – 1x8s @ 48 3/4″ (Top and Bottom (measurements differ from diagram to conserve boards)
  • 2 – 1x8s @ APPROXIMATELY 31″ (See step 2) Sides
  • 2 – 1×6 @ 47″ (Bin Bottom) (measurement differs from diagram to conserve boards)
  • 6 – 1×6 @ 14″ (Approximate)
  • 4 – 1×2 @ 47″ (Bin Backs)
  • 1 – 1×2 @ 47 1/4″ (Cleat)
  • 2 - 2×2 @ Your Base Board + 1″ (Legs)
  • 1 – 1×2 @ 44 3/4″ (Front Apron)
  • 2 – 1×2 @ 5″ (Side Aprons)
Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Kreg Jig
Power Sander
Drill Bit Set
General Instructions

I have marked this one Advanced not because it is difficult to build, but because it could be easy to mess up. Please don’t tackle this as a first project.


Step 1

Door Faces

Cut your door faces. If you have a Kreg Jig™, attach door faces to make two doors. If not, that’s okay, I got you covered in the next step. Measure the overall height of the doors and take note of this. 1x8s differ from mill to mill, so be aware and build according to your board widths.

Step 2


Start by attaching the 1×6 to the bottom of the doors as shown above with 2″ screws or pocket hole screws. Use glue. Then cut your bin dividers according to the height of your doors and round corners off. Attach in place. If you did not build your door faces in step 1, you can use finish nails and glue to attach the door faces to the dividers. You can use more dividers to add more support for the door faces (and more division of your shoe storage).

Step 3

Bin Backs

You need something to keep the shoes from tipping out. How about a couple of 1x2s? Screw and glue in place.

Step 4


The box needs to be build around your bins, with a 1/8″ gap around the door faces. We’ve aleady accounted for the gaps on the sides of the doors, but not the top and bottom. As shown in the diagram, figure the exact measurement of the sides and cut. Build your box.

Step 5

Step 6


Now this is the tricky part. Not so much trick to do but trick for me to explain. Clamp the bins centered in their box, with a 1/8″ gap around all sides. If you don’t have clamps, 1 1/4″ screws could do the trick from the inside of the bins. Drill a 3/8″ hole at the bottommost front corner of your bins, careful to make sure the hole drills into the bins and does not miss the bins. The hole needs to be the depth of your wood dowels. Insert the dowels and test the bins out. Alternatively, you can use traditional hinges.

Step 7


Attach the footer to the bottom as shown above.

Step 8

The Used Belt

Have someone give you a hand, because this one is tricky to handle here. There’s only two front legs and the bins keep flopping open . . . I know Tilt the bin out to the desired max opening. Cut a piece of the belt to and screw it to the bin and the shelf below the bin. Make two straps per bin.

Step 9


Keep the bins shut using the magnetic clasps. I used them on the sides for a nice tight fit. Screw the cleat to a stud in the wall behind the shoe dresser to keep it in place and to keep it from falling forward when the bins open.


ThunderMomma (not verified)

Mon, 01/17/2011 - 06:46

I love this! Made it immediately, only took a few hours to cut and assemble! My 6 year old started using it before I got the hinges installed! I made it 32 inches to accomadate my entryway, still loads of space. I have modified the plans to make a storage unit for my bathroom. Will have 3 bins, top will be a 1x8 and then 2 1x12 panels. perfect for makeup, hair products, and all those hair dryers, irons, etc. littering my bathroom floor. Hope to build it this week!!!!!

Amanda (not verified)

Sun, 02/06/2011 - 18:35

I have an IKEA shoe dresser, and the cubby/drawer section is so poorly designed all four were broken within a week. I'm going to retrofit the cubbies using this method! So much better

Niki (not verified)

Tue, 02/15/2011 - 07:18

I started building this last night. Here are a couple of thoughts along the way. No matter how I figure it, I come up short on the 1x8's for the shopping list. So I had to run back to orange this morning. I think 3 foot 1x8's and 1 10 foot 1x8 should work. If you plan on using dowel pins, be careful about the placement of pocket holes in the outside box. I happened to put pocket holes right about where I need to do the dowel pins for the bottom bin.. OOPS!

Niki (not verified)

Tue, 02/15/2011 - 09:17

For some reason, I was intimidated by the thought of the dowel pins. So I bought hinges, but while I was dry-fitting the drawers, it started to look like the hinges were going to be even more trouble. The dowel pins were a piece of cake. I had some shims that I wedged on all sides to keep it centered. So easy!!

Holly (not verified)

Sun, 02/20/2011 - 05:31

As I get to cutting, I'm coming up short on the 1x8x8's as well when comparing the required cuts to the shopping list. The diagram makes it look like the 31" pieces might even be 1x6x8's vice 1x8x8's? HALP!

Thaylok (not verified)

Thu, 08/09/2012 - 13:19

Just an FYI. I purchased the equipment list for this dresser in the Stock dimensions. In North Texas in the current market the lumber and supplies cost around $110 USD. This may help others as they plan.

I will be providing images of my modified application of the plans once I am complete. Love the plans.

Darryl (not verified)

Thu, 01/17/2013 - 08:41

These instructions are fantastic, and I've already procured the bulk of the wood needed to build it. Nevertheless, there's one thing I don't get.

Is anyone able to elaborate on how the dowel mechanism works for opening the drawers? I'm sure it's just something obvious I'm missing... but as the dowels are a moving part, it seems like unless there's a perfect fit, the dowels can eventually pop out (if too loose) or seize up (if too tight) in the holes drilled for them.

Additionally, the plans call for an eighth inch reveal/gap between the drawers and dresser casing. The plans don't seem to indicate whether any sort of spacer should be inserted to maintain this eighth inch gap. I'm sure normally there's only very little lateral movement of the bins when opening and closing them. However, I imagine over time they'll move far enough that one side ends up with a quarter inch gap while the other side starts rubbing up against the case. Has anyone experienced this?



Thu, 05/21/2020 - 14:42

I would love to see a version of this with two drawers at the top for keys or gloves. I’m visualizing putting dividers in the drawer or small drawer dividers like I might use in my kitchen.