| | |

Step-by-Step Guide: Installing Floating Shelves Like a Pro

Before learning how floating shelves were made, I always thought they were some kind of magic. But, building floating shelves are so much easier than you may think. There are a few different ways you can do them. You can build them from scratch, which I will do here. Or you can buy brackets and build the shelf, which I did in my husbands office, HERE. Follow my super simple instructions and you will be building and installing floating shelves in every room in your house before you know it.

Step 1: Build the floating shelves frame

Determine how large you want your shelf to be. If you want a bulky look, you can use 2×4’s. If you want a more sleek look you should use 2×2′s. I initially built it with 2×4’s, then changed my mind and re-made it with 2×2’s.

We will start by cutting the back piece of the frame. Determine the length you want the shelf to be. Take that number and subtract the thickness of the plywood you will be using for your shelf, 2 times. For example. If your shelf will be 36 inches long and your plywood is 1/2 inch thick. Your back piece will be 35 inches.

Next we will cut the supports for the shelf. Determine the depth you want the shelf to be. Take that number and subtract the width of your back piece. For example, if you want the shelf to be 12 inches deep, and you are using a 2×2 for the back piece, you will subtract 1.5 from 12. (Note – the actual measurement of wood is different than what its called. ie, a 2×2 is actually 1.5in by 1.5in.) So your support pieces will be 10.5 inches each.

Cut 1 support piece for every 12 inches of your shelf, plus 1. For a 36 inch shelf, you will need 4 support pieces. For a 48 inch shelf, you will need 5 support pieces.

Take a drill and a screw and screw the support pieces into the back piece. Put one at each end and space the remaining supports over the rest of the shelf. Screw from the back side of the back piece into the ends of the support pieces.

It will look like this when its complete.

Step 2: Find the Studs and Hang the Frame

Remember to always install shelves into the studs to ensure they are the most secure. Find and mark the studs on the wall.

Position the shelf on the wall and use a level to make sure it is straight. Secure the frame to the wall with screws into the studs you marked.

Getting a good stud finder and a long level will help ensure this is straight and secure.

Step 3: Build the Floating Shelves

There are a few ways you can build a shelf. If you have a table saw, you can miter the ends so that the shelf looks like one solid piece of wood. When I made this shelf, not only was my table saw not in the greatest condition, but I also wanted to make these in a way anyone could do it if you did not have tools.

You will cut a top and bottom piece that are the same size, a front piece, and 2 side pieces. Attach them together using nails or screws to form a box with the back side open.

Step 4: Hang and paint the shelf

Slip the shelf over the frame you built. Add a few screws or nails to the back piece to secure the shelf in place. Fill any nail holes. Paint or stain the shelf to finish it off. Super simple!

Have you tried building a floating shelves? Would you?

Follow along for more DIY’s and fun at…

floating shelves

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *