The hole layout, which features more vertical space between holes than horizontal, is key to this pegboard's style, but you can adjust the overall size to fit your needs.

By Kit SelzerAlice and LoisEdmund Barr and Laura Hull
Updated May 20, 2020

Create a DIY pegboard panel to fit your space and storage needs. For this project, created by Melissa Fenlon and Sara Albers of the blog Alice & Lois, simply drill holes into plywood in a grid pattern and use dowels to support shelves. Paint the panel to match the walls or make it stand out as wall art with a bright color. Once you've finished your DIY pegboard project, use it to organize craft supplies and office essentials, and display your favorite art and collectibles.

desk with white pegboard on wall with shelves
Credit: Edmund Barr

How to Make a DIY Pegboard Panel

Rearrange the shelves on this functional wall decor to fit your needs.

Supplies Needed

  • 3/4-inch plywood or MDO panel, cut to 30 x 48-inches
  • Wood primer
  • Paint
  • 5/8-inch dowel rod
  • 1x6-inch pine board, cut to 13 inches (1) and 19 inches (2)
  • 1/2-inch copper pipe, cut to 2 feet (optional)
  • Power drill
  • 1/2-inch drill bit
  • Sandpaper
  • Paintbrush or roller
  • (2) 1 x 2 x 30-inch board

Step-by-Step Directions

Here's an easy and inexpensive way to build a pegboard for your wall. When you're done, have fun rearranging the shelves to meet your changing needs.

Step 1: Cut Board and Plan the Holes

First, cut the plywood board to size. We cut ours to 30 x 48 inches. Begin measuring the rows—we spaced our shelves 8 inches apart. From there, work left and right, marking a hole every 5 inches along the rows.  Continue until you've marked all the holes. The distance between holes can vary based on your space and storage needs; just make sure they are spaced evenly. We had 25 marks when we were done.

Step 2: Drill the Holes

Use a 5/8-inch drill bit to drill the marked holes, placing the center of the bit over the pencil marks. Sand away any splintering around the hole edges on both the front and back sides of the board. You can also use a Drill Mate or a drill press to ensure straight holes when drilling.

Pegboard Storage Display
Credit: Edmund Barr

Step 3: Paint the Plywood

Prep the plywood for a smooth finish. Less expensive plywood will require more prep work, but if you spend a little more and start with marine grade plywood, you'll have less prep work. Sand the entire surface of the board with a sanding block or handheld sander before priming so paint will go on evenly. Wipe the plywood clean with a tack cloth to remove dust. Prime and paint plywood with a brush or roller. Keep the color a simple white or make a statement with bright paint color. Let the paint dry overnight.

Step 4: Mount Board to Wall

Now it's time to hang the DIY pegboard. Mount two 1x2-inch boards to the wall, drilling into the studs. They should be placed several inches apart, the distance shorter than your pegboard's height. Mount the pegboard driving 3-inch screws into the 1 x 2-inch boards. Use a level to make sure it's straight. 

Step 5: Cut Dowels

Cut the dowels to length. For our board, we cut the dowels to five inches. They should be long enough to support the size of the shelf you're using. Cut at least 15 dowels.

Pegboard Storage Display
Credit: Edmund Barr

Step 6: Arrange Dowels

Place dowel pieces into holes, using three dowels for the short shelf, four dowels for each long shelf, and two dowels for the copper pipe. Put the remaining dowel in a hole to serve as a hook. To keep the copper pipe in place, wrap a rubber band around the pegs it rests on.


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