Installing Knee Wall Storage: A Step-by-Step Guide

Are you tired of wasted space in your home? Transform those awkward corners into valuable storage solutions with knee wall storage! In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process of installing knee wall storage, turning hidden nooks into functional and stylish dressers. Whether you’re a seasoned DIY enthusiast or a novice homeowner, this project is sure to enhance both the aesthetics and functionality of your living space.

Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:

Installing knee wall storage is a straightforward process that can maximize space and organization in your home. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:
  1. Measure the Space: Begin by measuring the area where you plan to install the knee wall storage. Take accurate measurements of the height, width, and depth to ensure your storage unit fits snugly into the space.
  2. Choose Your Materials: Select the materials you’ll need for your knee wall storage, such as plywood for shelves, brackets for support, screws, a level, and a drill.
  3. Design Your Storage: Decide on the layout and design of your knee wall storage. Determine how many shelves you want and how you’ll arrange them within the space. Consider factors like the height of the items you’ll be storing and the distance between shelves.
  4. Prepare the Area: Clear out any clutter or debris from the space where you’ll be installing the storage. Make sure the area is clean and free of obstacles to provide a smooth surface for installation.
  5. Install Brackets: Use a stud finder to locate the studs in the wall where you’ll be attaching the brackets. Mark the locations of the studs, then use screws to secure the brackets to the wall at the desired height for each shelf.
  6. Cut Shelves to Size: Measure and cut your plywood shelves to fit the dimensions of the storage space. Use a saw or a circular saw to make precise cuts according to your measurements.
  7. Attach Shelves: Place the cut shelves onto the brackets and adjust them as needed to ensure they’re level and properly aligned. Use screws to secure the shelves to the brackets, making sure they’re securely attached.
  8. Add Finishing Touches: Once all the shelves are in place, double-check for stability and make any final adjustments as needed. You can also add trim or molding to the edges of the shelves for a polished look.
  9. Organize Your Storage: Finally, organize your items on the newly installed knee wall shelves. Consider using baskets, bins, or storage containers to keep smaller items organized and easily accessible.
Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:

By following these simple steps, you can install knee wall storage that maximizes space and adds functional storage to your home. Whether you’re looking to create extra storage in an attic, loft, or under-the-eaves space, knee wall storage is a versatile solution that can help you make the most of your available space.

Understanding Knee Wall Storage

Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:

Before diving into the installation process, let’s take a closer look at knee wall storage. Knee walls are short interior walls typically found beneath roof rafters, often in finished attics or top-floor living spaces. While they serve to define living areas and provide structural support, they also present opportunities for creative storage solutions. By recessing a chest of drawers into the knee wall, you can maximize storage without sacrificing precious floor space.

Assessing Skill Level and Costs

Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:

This project requires basic rough- and trim-carpentry skills, making it accessible to DIYers of all experience levels. With estimated costs ranging from $200 to $400, depending on the size of the chest of drawers, knee wall storage offers an affordable storage solution that won’t break the bank. Plan for 6 to 8 hours to complete the installation process, ensuring a weekend-friendly project that yields impressive results.

Step-by-Step Guide to Installation

Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:

Now, let’s dive into the installation process. Follow these simple steps to transform your knee wall into a functional and stylish storage solution:

Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:
  1. Trim Overhanging Ends: Begin by trimming any overhanging ends to ensure a flush fit with the knee wall.
  2. Trim Feet: Remove any feet or protrusions from the bottom of the chest of drawers to create a smooth, flat base.
  3. Trim Dresser to Fit Opening: Use a circular saw to trim the chest of drawers to fit the opening in the knee wall, ensuring a seamless fit.
  4. Close the Gap: Cover any gaps at the rear of the chest with a thin strip of hardboard or plywood, securing it in place with nails or staples.
  5. Paint, Stain, or Varnish Unfinished Wood: If the chest of drawers is unfinished, apply a coat of paint, stain, or varnish to protect the wood and enhance its appearance.
  6. Outline the Chest: Use a level to mark the outline of the chest on the wall, then cut out the wallboard using a drywall saw.
  7. Remove Interferences: Remove any knee-wall studs and insulation that may obstruct the opening for the chest of drawers.
  8. Install Supports: Screw support braces to the attic floor behind the knee wall, ensuring they are flush with the sill of the cutout.
  9. Insert Dresser: Set the chest of drawers onto the sill and slide it into the opening in the knee wall, ensuring it is flush with the finished wall surface.
  10. Secure the Chest: Drive screws through the sides, top, and bottom of the chest of drawers, securing it to the 2×4 framing.
  11. Finish Up: Install decorative trim around the perimeter of the chest to conceal the seam and give it a polished, built-in look.
Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:
Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:
Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:
Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:
Photo by Geoffrey Gross; Image source:


With this step-by-step guide, installing knee wall storage has never been easier. By maximizing hidden spaces and adding valuable storage, you can enhance both the functionality and aesthetics of your home. Say goodbye to wasted space and hello to stylish and practical storage solutions with knee wall storage!

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