Carpentry, Food, Home

How to build a wine rack: easy steps

With our guide to build a wine rack in easy steps, you have not only stored your treasures safely, you also gain stylish storage space in the apartment. 

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Project Difficulty: for beginners

Whether you have a wine cellar or not, if you want to treat yourself spontaneously to a bottle of wine, the big search often begins. The solution: a modular and expandable wine rack for the apartment. With this shelf you always have an overview of your wine stocks.

When storing wine bottles properly, four factors are particularly important:

  • storage and sufficient humidity to prevent the cork from drying out,
  • Darkness to protect the wine from UV light
  • the right temperature so that the wine does not ripen too quickly.

You should avoid large temperature fluctuations (besides window or heating) and temperatures above 23 degrees.

Flexible combinable modules

A big advantage of our guide to build a wine rack is the modular construction. With different constellations of two- and three-person modules, you can adapt, recombine and extend the shelf to many different room situations.

The modular design to build a wine rack accommodates two wine boxes, which can be pulled out as drawers. Up there is five centimetres of air to pull out the boxes comfortably. In the variant with rope handle, the distance to the top may be smaller. For the drawer construction, either partial extension or telescopic full extension are suitable.

In addition to the two drawers, the three-module also includes three vertical compartments for an additional three wine bottles. To ensure that the shelf modules float slightly above the ground and cast a clearly defined shadow on the floor, two rectangular strips with a height of 13 millimeters are attached to the bottom.

Build a wine rack: Material list

Wine crates, MDF 19 mm,
Rectangular strips 5 x 20 mm and 13 x 20 mm,
glue, varnish,
Screws Spax 3.5×16, 3.5×50, 4×20, 4×25
Polyester fine filler 2K
Drawer partial extension 40 cm
Drawer full extension 50 cm (variant)
U-discs (variant)
Screws 4 x 20 mm semi-circular head (variant)
Rope Spunflex Natural 8 mm (variant)


  • pencil
  • measuring tape or stick
  • angle iron
  • steel ruler
  • drill 3.5mm
  • grinding block
  • sanding paper 120er/240 grain
  • paint tray
  • paint roller
  • paint brush
  • Japan filler
  • miter box
  • fine saw
  • cutter knife
  • lighter
  • screwdriver
  • rag
  • dust broom
  • cordless drill
  • eccentric grinder

Build a wine rack to measure

The dimensions of your wine rack are necessarily based on the dimensions of the wine boxes. The necessary distances between the crates and the body depend on the extracts you use.

build a wine rack
In our example, the wine boxes are 33 cm wide. Between these and the body, 1.25 cm distance remain on both sides (mounted with partial extension). 

Constructing the body

The sawn-off MDF plates connect with glue and screws in pre-drilled holes. Markings on the bottom and lid plate help you to provide the holes in the right places.

Draw the positions of the back panel, exteriors, and shelf surfaces on the lid and bottom plate of the body.

build a wine rack

To screw, drill holes with a diameter of 3.5 mm on the markings in the lid and bottom plate.

On the end faces of the outside sides, apply glue to the bottom plate before screwing to ensure that the plates are stable.

build a wine rack

Place the screws (3.5 x 50 mm) in the pre-drilled holes of the base plate. Now you can turn them into the outside.

Remove excess glue between the outside and the base plate by driving along the edge with a moist cloth.

build a wine rack

If the outer sides are attached to the base plate, the rear wall is on the turn. Screw them to the outside.

build a wine rack

The middle sides are also glued first with the base plate and the rear wall, then screwed.

Place glue on all top edges of the back wall, outer sides and center sides before screwing the lid plate with it.

Then smooth the plate overhangs at the front of the shelf with an eccentric sander and a 120 grain disc.

Treating surfaces

If the body is glued and screwed, prepare the surfaces of the MDF plates and then paint them twice.

Stir in the two-component filler. To do this, add the hardener in the ratio indicated on the pack.

build a wine rack

It is important to observe the correct mixing ratio. Then thoroughly mix the two components with the Japanese filler.

Fill the screw heads and plate sands with the filler, so that no unevenness can be seen later.

build a wine rack

The cutting edges of the MDF panels should also be filled to create a completely flat surface.

Grind all surfaces and forehead edges with the eccentric grinder and 120 grain to smooth the sprained areas.

build a wine rack

You then break the outer edges with a grinding block and sandpaper with 120 grain.

To remove the sanding dust, sweep all surfaces thoroughly with a paint brush. Don’t forget the edges.

build a wine rack

Apply the first coating layer all around to all surfaces with a lacquer roll and allow it to dry for six to eight hours.

Before applying the second paint application, grind the surfaces with a grinding block and fine sanding paper (240 grain or finer).Next

Installing drawers

For convenient pulling and pushing the wine crates, attach extracts in pairs to the insides of the drawers. These can be installed as a partial or telescopic full extension.

A telescopic full extension works via rails on ball bearings – the wine box can be pulled out completely by the telescopic system. A pair (50 cm) costs between 40 and 50 euros in the DIY store. For this, they are more stable and of higher quality.Installing drawers

build a wine rack

Measure the drawer indents on the body and place them on the inside. Then fasten with two screws each.

At the wine boxes, measure the counterparts of the drawer extracts. Then screw 3.5 x 16 mm with screws.

build a wine rack

For a handle, lengthen a piece of rope, melt the ends and fasten it with semi-circular head screws and washers.

Rectangular bars serve as spacers. At the bottom the strips are 13 x 20 mm, at the top (for stacking) 5 x 20 mm thick.

gerhardt-richter Gerhardt Richter is a writer and a trainer at trade technical colleges, specializing in carpentry, plumbing, mechanics and construction.