Build these easy DIY Floating shelves with FREE Printable plans and how-to tutorial by Shanty2Chic. These are inexpensive and add character to your home!

I built the eight floating shelves you see there for only $120!!!  Each shelf is 4 ft. long and 12 in. deep!  How amazing is that πŸ™‚

I was inspired by the DIY Floating Shelves that Whit built in her bathroom!  If you missed them you can see them HERE πŸ™‚  I basically followed the same installation instructions and only made a few modifications to the size!

DIY Floating Shelves

Check out our How to Build a Floating Shelf Video HERE!


Here’s how I built mine!
CLICK HERE TO JUMP TO THE FREE PRINTABLE PLANS

How to Build DIY Floating Shelves

Supplies:

  • 1 2x4x8 Framing Lumber
  • 1 1x6x8 Pine Boards Or Common Boards
  • 1 3/4″x24″x48″ Hardwood Plywood (Birch)
  • 1 1/4″x24″x48″ Hardwood Plywood (Birch)
  • 1 1/2″ Pocket Hole Screws
  • 1 1/4″ Brad Nails
  • 3 1/2″ Wood Screws
  • Wood Glue
  • Wood Finish – paint or stain
  • Wood Filler

Tools:

  • Drill
  • Miter Saw
  • Kreg Jig

Step 1: Cutting the Lumber

daughter-on-cart

To avoid using my table saw, I had the nice man at the hardware store rip 1 sheet of 3/4″ Purebond Plywood (in Birch) into 4 – 11 1/4″ boards and 1 sheet of 1/4″ Purebond Plywood the same.  So you will basically have 4 – 8ft. 3/4″ boards and 4 – 1/4″ boards the same length.  (My daughter’s home away from home πŸ™‚ ) You can also use a circular saw to rip your boards.

I also purchased 6 – 2x4x8 and 6 – 1x6x8.

measurements

I came home and got to work!  I cut 1 – 2×4 @ 46.5″ and 2 – 2×4 pieces at 9.75″, for each shelf.

Step 2: Building the Frame

build-e

I built the “E” brackets the same way Whitney did by drilling pocket holes into the short 2×4 pieces with my Kreg pocket hole jig.

Step 3: Building the Wall Shelf

plywood-measurements

Then, I cut the 3/4″ plywood pieces and the 1/4″ plywood pieces at 46.5″ (totaling 8 boards per size).  These will be the top and bottom pieces of wood on the shelves.

I also cut 16 – 1×6 pieces @11 1/4″  and 8 – 1×6 pieces @48″ but I missed getting pictures of that! (these will be the sides and fronts of the shelves)

drill-pocket-holes-in-shelf-tops

I used my Kreg Jig to drill pocket holes into each end of the 3/4″ plywood boards and attached them to the 1×6 pieces to form the top piece and sides of the shelves. (again missed pics of that – I blame summer πŸ˜‰

Step 4: Attaching the Floating Shelf to the Wall

Time to bring them inside to install!

draw-a-level-line

After deciding where I wanted my shelves (I decided to give 13″ between each shelf) I used my level to draw a 4 ft. line where I wanted each shelf to sit.

find-studs

Next, I used my stud finder to mark where the studs were.  Attaching the “E” brackets to the studs behind the wall will avoid the need for wall anchors and allows them to hold more weight.

drill-into-studs

To attach the “E’s” to the wall, I used 3 1/2″ spax screws and drilled them into the “E” and then into a stud with my Impact Driver. I did 2 screws per stud.

ashley-installing-shelves

I installed 4 on one side of the fireplace and 4 on the other πŸ™‚

attach-shelves

Once the “E” brackets were installed, I dropped the assembled shelves on top of each one and attached them with my brad nailer and 2″ nails.

attach-bottom-with-nailer

Then, I followed-up with the 1/4″ sheets underneath.

I attached the 48″ 1×6 pieces to the front with my nailer as well (and surprisingly didn’t get pics of that part either)!

Step 5: Adding a Finish

tape-off-for-stain

I taped them off with painter’s tape before staining, sanded them all over with a 120-grit sandpaper and filled any exposed holes with wood filler.

Varathane-Carrington-Wood-Stain-500x740

I wiped on one-coat of Carrington stain, let it sit for 5-minutes and then wiped it with a clean cloth. Once the wood stain was completely dry, I added one coat of polyurethane with a paint brush.

  • You can find Rust-oleum stain HERE on Amazon.
before-shelves

Here is my before…. I’ve been starring at this space since we moved into our new home 4 months ago and finally decided how to fill the space.

DIY-Floating-Shelf-how-to

I built all of this shelving for about $120!!!  That gave me lots of dough to spend on decor πŸ˜‰

DIY-Floating-Shelves
how-to-build-a-floating-shelf
DIY-Floating-Shelf-Tutorial
How-to-Build-Floating-Shelves

I bought the majority of the accessories from Homegoods and Marshall’s, and a few pieces from Hobby Lobby!  Seriously LOVE my new space and $120 for 8 – 4ft. shelves is a lot of bang for my buck πŸ™‚

Thanks so much for stopping by!

~Ashley

Info on other things in this room πŸ™‚

I did build the coffee table and you can find it HERE!

You can find out about the fan HERE

and the info on the flooring is HERE

You can find the rug HERE

DIY Floating Shelves

Build these easy DIY Floating Shelves with free printable plans and how-to tutorial by Shanty2Chic. Make sure to click the link below to print the full version of the plans, including the supply list!
https://www.shanty-2-chic.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/DIY-Floating-Shelves.pdf

Supply List

  • 1 2x4x8 Framing Lumber
  • 1 1x6x8 Pine Or Common Boards
  • 1 3/4″x24″x48″ Hardwood Plywood (Birch)
  • 1 1/4″x24″x48″ Hardwood Plywood (Birch)
  • 1 1/2″ Pocket Hole Screws
  • 1 1/4″ Brad Nails
  • 3 1/2″ Wood Screws
  • Wood Glue

Tools

  • Drill
  • Miter Saw
  • Kreg Jig

Instructions

  • Cut List
    Note: This cut list is for one floating shelf. If you build more than one shelf, adjust the cut list.
  • Cut the cleat pieces to size. Drill 1 1/2″ pocket holes into one end of each support piece. Attach the support pieces to the long cleat piece with 2 1/2″ pocket hole screws and wood glue. Locate the studs behind the wall you are hanging the shelf on and attach the cleat to the wall with 3 1/2″ wood screws.
  • Cut the top plywood piece to size and attach it to the cleat with wood glue and 1 1/4″ brad nails.
  • Cut the bottom piece of plywood to size and attach it to the bottom of the cleat with 1 1/4″ brad nails and wood glue.
  • Cut the side pieces to size and attach them to the side of the cleat with 1 1/4″ brad nails and wood glue.
  • Cut the front piece to size and attach it to the front of the cleat with 1 1/4″ brad nails and wood glue.
  • Now, just adda a finish and you’re done! Make sure to share your builds with us on social media and use #shanty2chic so we can share them too! Happy Building!

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71 Comments

    1. You can, I like to stain inside when I can to keep stuff from blowing in the garage and sticking to the stain. Also, I attached the bottoms after they were attached the walls.

  1. I would also love to know how far you hung the first shelf from the floor! Also, how high are your ceilings?

  2. I love these shelves but I’m in a rent house and would probably want to take them with me eventually. Do you have any ideas for modifying the design to where they would be easily removeable?

  3. What paint color do you have on your wall? That is very close to the color I’ve been looking for. A little taupe, a little gray.

  4. I’m loving all of your stunning creations but am a beginner. I’m pulling in my handy husband to help start some of your projects and this is the first one I’d like to accomplish. We do not have any Kreg tools/products. What do you recommend we purchase for this project?? Thanks!!!

  5. My boyfriend and I just bought all the wood to make these shelves!! He does not have the tool to drill the pocket holes though and he was wondering the reason for needing them? Can the pieces just be nailed together from the top and sides?

        1. Love them!!!! Hung 3 in the guest room and 3 are going to go in the master bedroom, and then we are making 3 small ones to go in the bathroom!! Thank you so much for posting this DIY. They were super simple and look fabulous!!

  6. Love the shelves! Will be attempting! πŸ™‚ Question about the tv on the fireplace…where is the tv’s power source?

  7. Question on the 1X6 front piece – does this actually give you a little bit of a front ledge guard so to speak so things don’t slide off the front if bumped? I have a clumsy 13 y.o. boy doing the dusting ;0)

  8. Very cute shelves!! I was wondering if you nailed bottoms on all the shelves (the ultra thin wood)? The finished result looks like no. Can you share?

  9. I have also been staring at blank walls next to our fireplace/Tv and I was headed to IKEA this week to buy bookcases ($500.) I think you just saved me some money!!! Thank you!!!