Floating shelves are almost endlessly versatile. They fit in every room and there’s a ton of cool and practical ways in which they can be used. Today we’re showing you ten different design styles which implicitly means ten different ways in which you can possibly use floating shelves. Although you could probably find ready-made shelves to suit each idea in stores, these projects are meant to be DIY-friendly which gives you the perfect opportunity to create something special and to make your home decor more meaningful.
These bathroom floating shelves are just perfect for that little wall space above the toilet. They’re relatively easy to build and they have a solid look and a minimalist design. To build these shelves you need wood board, plywood, nails, a glue gun and your choice of finish which can be stain or paint or nothing at all if you prefer a natural look. Look for inspiration in the very room where you’re planning to install the shelves.
The design decision should be made based on the function that the shelves will fulfill once they’re in place. For example, if you want some floating bookshelves which you plan to use for the display of children’s books, cards, pictures and other things, you should think about a picture ledge-style shelf. You can paint these shelves so they match the wall behind them for a clear and non-intrusive look or you can make them stand out using an eye-catching color or a contrasting finish.
For spaces such as the laundry room or the garage you might want to consider some industrial or rustic shelves. There’s a very nice tutorial on shanty-2-chic which shows you exactly how to build the shelves from start to finish. The design is actually pretty versatile and you might also get away with it in spaces like the kitchen, dining room or the bedroom. You can always add more shelves later on if you think that’s necessary.
Some species of plants enjoy direct sunlight but there’s only so much space on a window ledge so you have to get creative if you want to keep your plants happy. A cute idea can be to build a few acrylic shelves and to install them across the window, attaching them to the inner frame. If you have windows with side hinges this will prevent you from opening them so think carefully before you make a decision.
A few triangle-shaped floating shelves would be just what an empty room corner needs. They let you put some dead space to good use and they can also look quite beautiful and eye-catching, not to mention that they can be very practical too when it comes to spaces such as the entryway, the bathroom or even the bedroom. Check out 4men1lady to find out more details.
This sort of box-style floating shelves are attractive because they stand out more compared to other types of shelves. Their graphical nature also helps them be super practical since you can store and display things both inside and on top of them. You can have sets of two or more shelves arranged on a wall, sort of like a gallery but you can just as well use them individually. More details about this project can be found on contemporist.
A floating shelf can also function as wall-mounted support for the TV in which case it can easily double as a media unit for accessories and connected devices. Check out the tutorial for this floating TV shelf featured on prettyhandygirl. It can give you a clear idea of what this project’s requirements are in terms of supplies, tools and also time and effort.
Most often than not we use floating shelves to store, display and organize books. You don’t need to own a very large collection in order to be proud. In fact, small collections of books and magazines give you the opportunity to build some quirky floating bookshelves like the ones featured on familyhandyman. These are designed to be installed at an angle.
Picture ledge shelves are perfect for display purposes because they allow you specifically to draw attention to your favorite framed photos or decorations and to create a gallery wall that has style and personality. The idea is great for spaces such as hallways, entryways or pretty much for any empty wall in the house. You can find more details about the project on thecraftpatchblog.
If you like the look of natural, unfinished wood, especially of live-edge pieces or tree trunk tables, you can apply some of those concepts to make some really unique shelves. A super cool idea, for example, is to turn firewood into floating shelves by cutting the wood pieces so they have to adjacent flat sides. On instructables you can find all the details needed for this little DIY project.
Floating shelves with no visible hardware actually look like they’re floating which gives you a very clean and simple look. This is a great fit for a modern or a contemporary home and you can also build these for close to nothing. Check out these sleek DIY floating shelves shared by DIY Creators. You can make three of them for less than $10 and the best part is they don’t require any hardware.
You might also like these floating shelves also shared by DIY Creators which are super easy to make. You can basically build these in just a few minutes from start to finish assuming you have all the supplies ready. Cut the lumber to the desired length, drill the pocket holes in each shelf, sand the wood, apply the finish you want and then just mount the shelves to the wall using screws. It’s so simple it would be a shame not to give this project a try.
There’s many spaces in a home that could benefit from having some sturdy floating shelves. For instance, the laundry room is one such space. A pair of solid shelves like these ones shared by Living to DIY with Rachel Metz are great because they fill this entire space above the washing machine but they don’t take up a lot of room and they don’t make this area seem cluttered.
As mentioned before, floating shelves are also a perfect fit for a bathroom. They’re particularly well-suited for the space above the toilet. In some cases the toilet is actually enclosed in a little nook and the side walls make it quite difficult to place any sort of pre-made furniture there. The shelves are great because you can perfectly measure them to go from wall to wall and they’re also super easily accessible. Check out this super simple design by simplydesigning.porch as a reference.
Another good place for a few floating shelves inside the bathroom can be the next to or above the tub or the sink. They’re useful for storing a few things like shampoo bottles, soap, extra towels and so on and you can also have a few decorations displayed here as well. It’s a nice way to add some personality to the bathroom and to make it look more inviting. Check out shanty-2-chic if you want to find out how these lovely shelves were built.
There’s a variety of different ways in which you can install floating shelves. One option is to use special brackets designed specifically for this sort of project. They’re small and designed to be covered up by the shelf so they’re completely hidden once installed. Floating shelf brackets can also be of several different types. The ones used in this tutorial from thenavagepatch must be screwed into a stud.
A nice use for floating shelves can be to create your very own vertical garden. You can have several of these shelves installed on a wall, spaces apart so the plants have sufficient room to grow. They can each hold several plant pots and you can be really creative with the way in which you’re displaying them. It’s a perfect idea for a collection of cacti or succulents. Check out alittlecraftinyourday for more details.
Having a few floating shelves in the kitchen can be super convenient and handy as well. They’re great for storing and organizing all sorts of things that either have no designated space inside the cabinets or that you want to keep out in the open for convenience. For example, you can keep your condiments of these shelves or you can create a spot for your coffee mugs. It would be best to make sure these shelves are super sturdy in case you ever decide to store something heavier on them. This tutorial from biggerthanthethreeofus teaches you how to make that happen.
Room corners are generally good spot for floating shelves because they’re usually overlooked and left empty. Rather than letting a corner become a dead spot in your home, install a few of these L-shaped shelves in here and turn this into a lovely display area for some decorations, framed pictures, potted plants and so on. You could even add a comfy chair here and turn this into a reading nook. You can find all the information needed on abeautifulmess.
If you’re not planning to store anything super heavy on these shelves, you could get away with not using special mounting brackets at all. Instead you could just use wooden dowels. You’ve probably seen this technique being used before. It makes it super easy for anyone to build floating shelves and to easily install them without any outside help. More details about it can be found on instructables.
A couple of floating shelves could really save a small kitchen. You could install them up on the wall above the counter or even onto the backsplash and use them for storage. Although you could also place a regular cabinet there as well, shelves would make the room look a lot more airy and spacious. The ones featured in this tutorial from instructables look super strong and sturdy and have a very versatile design.
Sometimes it can be a bit tricky to install floating shelves, especially when they’re quite heavy and big themselves. They need to be able to support they’re own weight and to remain perfectly level which can pose problems. Sometimes there’s an easy fix for that, as easy as taping something to the back of the shelf so it becomes level again. Check out this trick on instructables for more details.
Based on some of the ideas and projects mentioned so far you can come up with ways to mix and match them and to create something that suits your own needs and style. For example, you could have a couple of corner shelves placed in the kitchen, to fill an empty space between two windows.
Speaking of kitchens, an open concept design like this one doesn’t really allow anything other than some floating shelves to be installed on the outer section of the wall. That’s because a cabinet would block the view and would look too big and heavy and nothing at all would be too simple and boring. The shelves really are the perfect answer in this case.
When you have a setup like this, where the backsplash is quite tall and the range hood takes up a big portion of the wall, it feels like a waste of space and potential not to add a few floating shelves on either side of it.
You could also have a kitchen with nothing but floating shelves on the upper section. The lower cabinets can hold all the big things that you want to keep out of sight and the shelves can offer extra storage for everything else. This would make the kitchen look super airy and spacious without requiring big sacrifices.