Hi there. Welcome to Very Very Gaming! This blog is sponsored by NerdyCrap. In this series of posts I’m going to talk about storage space and videogames, bringing you all the top tips on running a gamer-friendly household on a budget. In this week’s post, I’m going to show you how to free up valuable shelf space without spending a penny. Come on then, let’s get a move on!
Now, if your partner is a bit bookish, an old-school music nut or a knick-knack collector (I’m really sorry), you might have competition for shelving space in your home. Here’s a great tip you can use. Build yourself some DIY shelves, then offer them to your partner and label it a “present”. With any luck, they’ll be wracked with enough guilt that they’ll actually use the inevitably hideous creation, leaving you with precious shelf space to use for videogames, or whatever your shelf-hogging hobby may be. Later in this post, I’ll show you how to build your own unstable edifice out of a cardboard box.
In my house, shelf space is sparse. Videogames, CDs, DVDs, VHSs (yes, still), and worst of all books – enough books to bury a small giant in fact – fill every crevice of shelf space. Videogames of course have pride of place in my home, and that means occasionally reshuffling the less desirable mediums – an eclectic mixture of sounds, video, words stored in different formats – to make space for videogames, the medium of the future.
Take a quick glance at the UK’s Gumtree or Freecycle websites. It won’t take long before you’re convinced that that every home in Britain contains at least one Billy bookcase. And that goes for me too! All my games are housed in Billy, or Skaarsgard or the Icelandic word for “whale spunk”, or whatever else Ikea picked for it. Until a week ago, my CDs were all there too, sitting pretty in Billytown. But with a rapidly expanding game collection and a full set of shelves, I decided that my priorities weren’t quite right, and things at my house needed to change…
That was the point when I decided, stingy bugger that I am, that rather than track down Billy: The Sequel, I would simply create DIY shelves for my CD collection. That way I could free up two whole shelves of premium Ikea-bought space for games and more games. So with zero DIY experience, memories of Blue Peter and other children’s television shows, and the Rocky theme tune in my earbuds, building a self-contained shelving unit out of a cardboard box seemed for 30 seconds like the most rational course to take.
Without further ado, here’s one I made earlier:
In order to make this self-contained shelving monstrosity at home, you’ll need:
- 1 tight-arse gamer with zero taste, zero skill and zero care for interior design
- 1 easily influenced partner
- 1 large wardrobe, to place your shameful creation atop (helps attract spiders)
- 1 retired cardboard box
- 1 pair of scissors, to cut up the cardboard box
- 1 large (preferably scented) candle to act as a book end
- 1 large (preferably war-related) book to give stability and height to the candle
- 2 small glass panes to support the CDs/knick-knacks/rom-coms (borrow your neighbours’ car windows if you haven’t got any spares around)
- 1 small plastic box to support the glass panes
- 0 screws, hammers, nails or wood – why bother?
And there you have it, the easy route to freeing up your best shelves for videogames! Shy about giving your partner’s things “the boot”? Uncomfortable with throwing his or her things in the bin, or placing them in storage without their permission? Hate your partner’s guts? If the answer is “yes” to any of the above, a visually repulsive homemade cardboard shelving unit could be the ideal birthday or Christmas gift!