Thursday, April 7, 2016

DIY (ish) record storage unit

If you're a very observant person you might have noticed that all of the records on my bookshelf magically disappeared about a month or so ago. I didn't get rid of them, I just decided to make a much more intuitive record storage unit. And it's located right next to my record player, which means I actually listen to and switch records way more often than I did when my records were all jam-packed into my bookcase.

I hesitate to even call this a DIY because honestly all I did was stack two pieces of furniture on top of each other. The bottom shelf is an old Expedit from IKEA with some table legs from Lowes attached to the bottom. The top piece is a modular storage piece from Amazon. After I painted the edges (I taped off a 2" border on the modular storage to match the width of the Expedit frame, and I used the color Poppy Petal from Valspar.) I added this self-adhesive towel bar on the front to create a little display spot for whichever record I'm currently listening to. (Or in this case, the cover that I think is really pretty and put on display whenever I'm not actually playing anything.)

I also bought LP dividers so I could sort my records by genre or person (although the only person whose presence in my collection is so enormous that they warrant their own divider is Frank Sinatra.) On the bottom shelf I have the records that I don't listen to as often, and then on top are my most-played albums.

Think about it -- when you go to a record store, the albums are always displayed in a way that makes it easy to browse. They're facing forward so you can thumb through them, not crammed into bookcases where their little tiny spines make it almost impossible to figure out which record is which. Especially when you collect older records where the spine has seen better days, finding an album based on the side text is virtually impossible.

I've been listening to my records so much more often since I switched over to this way of storing them. It's so easy to flip through and find what you're looking for, or browse until something just strikes your fancy. And the little ledge in the front means I don't have to worry about where to keep my cover while the record is playing. I have a few collectible albums that my dad handed down to me and I've always felt so anxious just laying the cover on a table or resting it on the floor while I'm playing the LP! EEEK! Now I don't have to worry about that anymore :)

I know IKEA doesn't make Expedit anymore (and I'm not sure if its replacement, Kallax, has the same outside dimensions? Or does it even have a 2 cubby option?) but if you could find a similar base this really is a fantastic (and super easy!!) project. As long as the base unit is slightly deeper than the one on top it should work. Or if the ledge isn't that important to you, you can just stack two modular units on top of each other.

Happy listening! :)