I always wanted a secret bookcase/door in my house.  So when the door to the space under the stairs in our house needed replacing because the previous owner had put a giant hole in it for some reason, I knew I had my chance.

I used a 2 x 6 to carry the weight of the hinges.  Five 1 x 6’s served as the shelves and top.  I was nervous to make the bookcase any wider, for fear the the extra width would bring too much extra weight, and was not prepared to weld a steal frame.

I got a 1 x 10 for the far piece because I wanted to install it on an angle, cutting the shelves as necessary, so the corner of the bookcase wouldn’t catch when opened.  I made the angle way more dramatic than necessary, but whatevs.  It’s fine.  The back is a 3/4″ thick piece of plywood, which provides the case with some extra structure.  Then I trimmed the whole thing, making sure to cut the pieces near the hinges at an angle so they wouldn’t catch; sanded it some; and used at least a tube of caulk to cover up my myriad of small mistakes.

Five hinges carry the extra load.  I had them leftover from when I refinished all the interior doors and replaced all the hinges.  A couple of magnets on the trim holds the case to the jam, and I picked up a cool handle on Ebay for more convenient opening/closing, but I didn’t get that on till after I took these pictures.  I painted the whole thing white, and the back of the case green to add a sense of depth.

Before:

After:

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