Thursday, January 21, 2021

Transform Your White Wire Shelving With This One Quick Trick!

John and I found an awesome solution for white wire shelving, gang - something I've never seen anyone use before, so I can't wait to show you!

Now, you've probably seen other DIYers cover white wire shelving with foam board, which is great for a linen closet:

For anything heavier than linens, though, foam board is fragile and easily dented. No way this would work in a pantry with heavy cans sliding around, for example.

Other crafters have covered their white wire shelving with actual wood, which is plenty durable, but also a huge job that requires power tools, sanding, staining, and the added expense of a decent grade wood.

I don't know about you, but I don't have that kind of energy or patience to spend on a closet.

Then a few months ago, as John and I were re-doing a pantry for a friend, we discovered the best of both worlds: something as durable as wood, almost as cheap as foam board, and easier to install than either.

Ready to see?


 These new shelf covers are a thick durable plastic - so no more wobbly containers or sticky rust stains on your stuff - and they look like solid laminate! Best of all, this whole transformation took us less than 2 hours, and cost about $22 - with enough material left over to do another closet.

Here's the secret, and how easy it is to install:

Yep, all you need is that plastic wall board (which is meant for bathrooms), a measuring tape, and some heavy duty scissors. That's it! One sheet should cover about two closets this size, so I promise you'll want to re-do ALL your shelves after this.

From this angle you can see how the shelf covers slide inside the wall brackets on either side, which  holds them securely in place, no sliding around. Unfortunately these brackets have really yellowed over time, but usually they're white and blend in with the shelves.

This is our second install of this shelving, since I wanted to film the process for you. Let me show you the first set we did for our friend Ken's pantry, though, since those made an even bigger difference.

Here's why these have been so helpful:

See those soup cans on the bottom? Ken has Muscular Dystrophy, so they're hard to lift. Before he had to struggle to drag those cans off the sticky white wire shelving to make his lunch every day. But now, with these new shelf covers, Ken can easily slide the cans off the shelf into his lap.

Ken's told me several times how wonderful it is to cook here now, both because of these shelves and the extra organization we helped with around their kitchen, getting all of Ken's items down low and more accessible. It's been a really fun challenge, and I hope someday we can do a little video tour for y'all.

I hope this helps all of you out there with white wire shelving! Let me know if you plan to do this yourself - or better yet, share pics and tag me online when you do!


P.S. Tomorrow (Friday) night is Movie Night over on the Epbot Discord! Come join us at 8:30pm EST as we watch a classic: The Wizard of Oz. Or you can tune in Sunday the 24th at 3:30pm EST for the matinee showing.

I know Discord is new territory for most of us, but I promise the Epbot server isn't scary at all. It's entirely text based, no video or audio, and has channels - or chat rooms - for everything from cosplay to pet pics to your favorite TV shows.

Here's a screenshot so you can see some of the channels on the left.

Discord is free to use, easy to lurk, and mostly fan-run, though John and I set it up initially. Our only goal was to provide another place beyond Facebook for you bots to socialize, plus we pop over on Movie Nights to chat, which is super fun for us. (The chicken gif-off during Ever After will live on in infamy! Ha! :D)

So yeah, if you're craving a little no-pressure social interaction, here's your click. The Epbot Discord crowd is much smaller than FOE on Facebook - about a thousand strong now - but just as sweet, so tell 'em I sent ya, k?


  1. Movie nights are so much fun! Do come join us!

  2. Does that plastic wall board come in colors? Or patterns?

    1. No, not that I've seen. (It's meant to be used in bathrooms and showers, so white is the standard.) However, you could always cover it with contact paper! It has a slight texture to it - it's not glass smooth - but from my experience that helps the contact paper stick better, so you should be good to go.

    2. Plastic wall board panels do comes in other colors, but they're not going to be a stocked item at Home Depot. Maybe they could special order for you if you're tackling ALL THE CLOSETS! Blue Sky by Marlite is one option I've researched for use on commercial architectural projects.

  3. I have lived with those awful wire shelves for 25 years without finding a good way to cover them! I've tried place-mats,cardboard, old shelves from a broken bookshelf, towels, poster-board, and foam-core, none of which worked for very long. As I was watching your video, I kept saying "Oh, wow!" over and over, annoying the heck out of my husband. I convinced him that the only way to stop me was to take me to Home Depot today. Thank you for this awesome idea!

    1. Aw, I'm so glad! I hope you'll share a picture when you're done - I'd love to see. :)

  4. I'm wondering if this would work for the wire shelving in my fridge? It doesn't have the brackets like the pantry shelves do to keep the wall board in place.

    1. Yes, it should work great! Just add some poster tack/museum putty underneath in a few spots to keep it from sliding around on the wire shelving. Then once you load it up again with food stuffs the added weight will help flatten it and keep it in place.

  5. Thanks for the timely inspiration, Jen! I have a freestanding wire shelf unit in our bathroom that's been needing a fresh look. I'll have to look into this.

  6. Hi there! I came for the wire shelving video but I am intrigued by the Discord. The link above says it is no longer valid. Do I need a different invite? Thank you!

  7. How are you able to press the edge so cleanly?

    1. Mostly brute strength; once you have your fold line smash it down completely to crease it as much as possible. The side clips then help hold it in place - which of course works perfectly on short shelves like these. Longer shelves are probably going to bow up in the middle, so you can help hold those down with white duct tape on the back.


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