34 Easy DIY Floating Shelves You Can Build Yourself
Floating shelves are both artistic and very useful. They can look amazing, as if they are truly floating, plus they can provide shelf space where it would otherwise have been impossible.
If you've been planning to build a floating shelf by yourself, then you are not alone. Many families have discovered the joy of having them and most DIY folks are doing the building by themselves.
Below are 35 of such DIY floating shelf projects from across the Internet. I do hope that you'll get inspired by going through them.
1. Glossy White Double Floating Shelves Plan
One thing about these shelves is their glossy white appearance, which matches perfectly to the background. This tutorial is delivered in 10 steps.
There is a supplies list first, before the cut list, which is featured in step 1. The DIY floating shelves are made up of a frame and an outer 1/4-inch plywood covering.
Clear and well-shot pictures also tell their stories alongside the instructions. The shelves are finished and installed by the 7th step. Next comes priming and painting, and the project is over.
2. $20 DIY Floating Shelf Guide
Costing just $20 and less than a day to make, these shelves are made from half of an 18-inch wide hollow-core door. This means that you'll not be building a frame from scratch, but rather, you'll be cutting a door in half.
All the tools that you'll need are listed, including the materials like screws, an 8-ft long 2x4, and a masking tape.
An 8-step photo tutorial helps to explain the construction process. There is also a video guide for those who prefer videos. It is recommended to keep the shelf's width below 10 inches and to paint it before installation.
3. DIY $10 Wood Floating Shelf Plans
This guide includes everything you need in order to rebuild these shelves perfectly. You get a materials list, a tools list, and a video guide for video lovers.
The entire project cost just $10 in materials. This includes 3 cedar pickets at $2.50 a piece and a 2x3 board for $3.
You get a DIY guide here with lots of beautifully colored pictures. You also get downloadable plans, which are completely free from GumTree.
One outstanding feature of this project is the finishing. After sanding, a steel wool and vinegar stain were used. You then have to wait a while to get the desired effects. A link to the stain's tutorial is also included.
4. Elegant 3-Piece Bathroom Floating Shelves Plan
The size of these shelves, combined with their dark walnut stain and being 3 in number, makes them a unique and memorable construction.
They were built by Whitney from Shanty2Chic. This guide includes a supply list, downloadable plans, and a video guide as well. Most of the joints were done using pocket holes made by a Kreg Jig.
Inside the downloadable plans, you will find a detailed supply and cut list, plus color-coded diagrams, which provide you with all the info that you need in a step by step manner.
5. Slim Floating Shelves DIY Guide
Here we have a different kind of floating shelves idea. The shelves are slim, unlike the previous designs in this guide. This makes them seem even more floaty.
Being slim also means that the shelves are made using a single wood board and not plywood and a frame. This opens up questions about weight and stability.
Each of the shelves will cost $3 to $5 in wood to make. Stain, screws, polycrylic coats and other extras will, of course, raise the costs. The tutorial is simple, quick, and basically involves making pocket holes and finding the right studs.
6. Corner Floating Shelves DIY Plan
This floating shelves plan is for 3 chunky shelves, which can be easily installed in the bathroom, as is done here. The entire project with 3 shelves should cost less than $20 in wood.
These plans though, are presented for the creation of a single shelf, which is 32 inches wide and 5.5 inches deep. By adjusting the supplies list provided, you can then create 2 or more shelves.
Ashley takes you through the entire construction process with lots of pictures and detailed instructions. The frame is built using 2x3s, while a 1x4 board is used for the upper side and plywood underneath.
7. Modern & Classy DIY Chunky Floating Shelves
Here is another situation where a rather unimpressive bathroom was given a facelift by simply installing 2 chunky floating shelves painted in white.
This guide starts off with both a list and a picture of the needed materials. The frame is built using 2x3 boards, while plywood is used underneath and 1x10 boards on top.
In order to achieve the modern & classy effect that these shelves have, you'll still have to properly sand them with a 120-grit sandpaper, before applying a primer and then a bright white paint.
8. Simple Floating Shelf in 10 Steps DIY Tutorial
If all you want to learn is how to build floating shelves in the simplest possible way, then this tutorial might offer you the information that you need.
Unlike the chunky types that use a frame and plywood covers, this one uses just a single board. This makes it very simple and also quite easy to build.
This design uses a bolt, which you have to stick inside a pre-drilled hole and then attach the other end into the board that you are using as a shelf. This tutorial shows you everything with pictures and detailed instructions.
9. Rustic Floating Shelves in Concrete Wall Guide
A rustic touch can sometimes be all you need to give a modern and stylish home a personal touch. This is exactly what Jenna did to her kitchen here, by adding rustic floating shelves to a white-tile kitchen.
Since they were not going to find studs in the wall, Jenna had to buy heavy-duty toggle bolts to drill into their concrete wall and create an anchor for the shelves.
Jenna also bought cabinet grade plywood because she wants it to look great after staining. She details every step in this guide, including using wood filler, sanding, staining and applying a polycrylic protective finish.
10. Corey's 2-Tone DIY Floating Shelves Guide
Corey combines a rustic and a modern look in these 4 shelves, creating a look that is both timeless and stylish combined. The addition of large bolts in the front also adds to this unique style.
Each of Corey's shelves is 43 inches wide, 2 inches high, and 10 inches deep. The materials list includes 1x3 boards for the frames, hex bolts and washers, as well as wood screws.
The tutorial is delivered in 8 steps. Corey begins with the cutting of the wood in step 1, then moves on to drilling and the installation.
11. Faux Floating Shelves DIY Guide
There are different ways you can make a floating shelf. With this method, you use corner brackets to attach 2 x 10 boards to the wall, and that's it.
The material list is simple and contains just 5 items which total $28 for 2 shelves. Sarah builds the entire project in 6 steps since her boards were pre-cut at the store.
All she had to do was sand and stain the boards, paint the brackets to match the board's color, drill your holes and then hang the shelves.
12. DIY Floating Corner Shelves Plan
This floating shelves idea takes things to a different level by floating around corners. Their bright white color and being 3 pieces also gives them quite a modern look.
The provided supplies list is for the 3 shelves, but it can be modified to fit a different number of shelves. It includes 2x4s, 1/4-inch plywood, heavy-duty fasteners, and paint.
Detailed plans with color-coding and measurements are included, plus a step by step guide, which includes pictures for better understanding.
Once the frame is complete, all you need is to cover the shelves with plywood and then use putty to cover up holes, before sanding and finally painting.
13. 73-Inch Wide Simple Floating Shelves DIY Guide
Coming from Jamison the Rogue Engineer, these floating shelves feature a very simple design while being very sturdy and functional.
Each of the shelves is 73 inches wide, 5.5 inches high and 12 inches deep. You will require a pocket hole jig, a drill, stud finder and the other items in the tools list.
You also get a materials list, plus a cut list and color-coded diagrams for easy understanding. The frame is built using 2x4s, while the outer box covering is built using 1x12s.
14. 10-Step DIY Floating Shelves Tutorial
John and Sherry built this one together with Ana White. The shelves are each made up of a frame which is 69 inches wide and 5.5 inches deep.
The second part of this construction is the box cover, which is made from 1/4-inch plywood. The frames are first attached to the wall and the cover boxes are then slid over the frame.
There are 10 steps in this construction guide. They begin with general instructions, then the cutting and building of the frame, plus the building, filling, sanding, and painting of the shelf cover boxes.
15. 76-Inch Wide 3-Piece Floating Shelves DIY Guide
Adding floating shelves to your living room or even dining area can be quite a rewarding experience. The shelves here are used to hold dining items, and they also look very good.
This guide comes with lots of pictures and instructions. One important aspect was the proper measuring out of the area for the shelves. This guarantees that they'll look great.
The inner frame is constructed with 2x4 boards, while the sides and the front of the shelves are made using 1x6 boards, with 1x12s being used for the top and bottom.
All the wood used here is pine. It makes the shelves sturdy and able to hold quite some weight. It also looks amazing after it has been properly sanded and stained.
16. Chunky $15 DIY Floating Shelves Plan
Caitlin is a designer and she built these 2 floating shelves. Their dark walnut stain stands out easily and this floating shelves plan is also different because the shelves are installed in a tight space, directly above the toilet.
There is a cut list which is also presented in a photo form. The frame is built using 1x3s, while 1x10 boards are used for the tops and bottoms.
The boards cost a total of $28.96, which makes slightly less than $15 per shelf. The 12-ft long 1x10s cost the most at $20.15.
17. Laundry Room DIY Floating Shelves Guide
Here's another totally different DIY floating shelves idea. With less than $100 in wood costs, this rather boring laundry room was turned into a highly functional space.
The supply list includes a 3/4-inch plywood, pine boards, drywall screws, sandpaper, putty and a stud finder. There are 3 shelves in this project, with 2 of the shelves being normal floating shelves and the third being much larger.
A total of about 3 hours was spent for this project. This guide includes lots of pictures and is well detailed. You can choose not to paint yours white for example and just be a little creative.
18. Alicia's Rustic DIY Floating Shelves Plan
Alicia used these 2 floating shelves to turn her bathroom into an oasis of comfort and wellness. The shelves are each 3 feet wide and cost $7 in materials per shelf.
1x6s, 1x4s, and 2x2s were all used in this project. Alicia built the frames first and attached them to the wall before adding the cover box. This project is different from most others because it does not use plywood for the top or bottom.
Alicia begins with a cut list and a supply list. She then adds lots of pictures alongside the building instructions and finally stains her shelves to perfection.
19. Round Wooden Plate DIY Floating Shelf
This project is quite different from the rest of the projects on this list. It is not hooked to any wall, but rather a round wooden tray hangs from the roof on ropes.
It does require a little bit of balancing, but with the right measurement and cuts, the yarn can properly balance the plate which comes from Home Depot. You will also need scissors and enough yarn to do this project.
The step by step guide is delivered in 6 steps. The yarn was initially used as it is, but in a later update, Aniko adds macrame braids to the yarn and also stains the wooden plate a little.
20. DIY Heavy-Duty Floating Shelves Plan
Brit is a house and DIY enthusiast, who loves to create unique and unforgettable things. In this project, she adds a touch of raw wood to her immaculately white-tile kitchen.
This is a rather big project because the shelves were first installed before adding the tiles. If you already have tiles in your kitchen, then you might want to drill through your tiles.
Brit provides a full material list, which includes 12-inch threaded rods for the installation, 2x12 framing lumber for the shelves, and other items. There are also enough pictures and instructions.
21. Amazing Floating Wood Shelves Tutorial
This set of 4 wood shelves are so amazing in their size and design. Built into a 6-ft wide nook, the shelves fill it up from wall to wall, creating the impression of a built-in system.
The frames are also very sturdy, as Scott proves by standing on one. They are built using 2x4s, which provide a more solid support than the 1x3s used by most other DIY floating shelves.
Scott presents this tutorial very well, including nice pictures and detailed instructions. There is a supplies list, a tools list, and lots of tips along the way.
22. Sam's Super Chunky Floating Shelves DIY Guide
Sam built her shelves near her staircase, taking inspiration from the Shanty2Chic girls Whitney and Ashley. Her shelves are very chunky though, and quite sturdy as well.
She built the frame using 2x4 lumber, and then made the top cover using 1x6 boards, and the lower side using 3/4-inch plywood. She also covers the front of the shelves using 1x6 boards.
Sam includes a lumber and a supplies list, plus a long cut list. The guide is well laid out too, showing each stage of the construction process in details.
23. Upcycled DIY Floating Shelves from Firewood Tutorial
This is one of the most amazing DIY floating shelves ideas that you can find. In place of making the shelves using lumbers, this floating shelf plan simply uses firewood to create an amazing piece of art.
The guide begins with a tools list and a materials list, which included the firewood log, an oil-based finish, and mounting hardware.
Next comes the splitting of the log and the step by step instructions to turn it into an amazing shelf. This guide includes lots of good pictures and a video guide as well.
24. Wall to Wall DIY Floating Shelves Guide
With a total of 7 shelves in this project, this is one perfect example of how to turn an empty nook into a very valuable space. These shelves provide so much space for books that they are both perfect for the bedroom and living room.
The entire guide is delivered in a 7-step tutorial, which begins with the attachment of the frame to the walls, the addition of a top board, and the final sanding and painting.
There are detailed diagrams, supplies list, a tools list, as well as detailed pictures.
25. Clever $7 Floating Shelves Video Tutorial
Each of the shelves in this tutorial cost approximately $7 to make. The shelves are made from 1 piece of 8-ft long 2x6-inch lumber which costs about $5. Then there are keyhole hangers and a dowel for about $2.
This video is very well organized and is delivered in a step by step guide. The first step is the cutting of the 2x6, then gluing together and adding dowels to hold it together.
After sanding, he applied a rather special paint, but you are free to finish it any way that you prefer. The next important lesson here is the hanging of the shelves to the wall. He uses a very clever method.
26. DIY Corner Ladder Bookshelf Tutorial
Well, this one is a very artistic project. Tabitha the fresh mommy creates a rather impressive bookshelf using an upcycled ladder.
If you are tempted to copy her work, then remember that this depends on the type of ladder that you have available and also on whether it has seen good use or not.
Tabitha uses nice pictures in a step by step way to show you how she did it, from the cutting of the ladder into 2 parts to mounting them using corner brackets.
In the end, you will have to apply your sense of art to this project, in order to get the look that you want here.
27. Mandy's DIY Floating Corner Shelves
In the spirit of DIY, Mandy here really takes things to a whole new level, by making the best use of what she already has. She turned the limited space beside her bed into an oasis of beauty and sweet memories.
Mandy's dad built these shelves for her and she also shows you exactly how he did it. The tutorial begins with a materials and tools list, both in words and in a picture.
There is then a 12-step guide, which details the cutting of the wood and the setting up of the shelves. There is also a video guide for those who love videos.
28. Rachel's Solid Wood Floating Shelves Guide
Rachel uses special floating shelf brackets to hold her shelves. This guide begins with a materials list, a tools list, and a list of optional finishing materials, including sealers and sandpapers.
It takes 10 steps from the beginning of the guide to the hanging of the shelf. Rachel advises using lumber that is at least 1 inch thick and 5 inches deep.
She shows you in a step by step manner, how you too could turn a 'not so perfect' piece of lumber into a beautiful shelf and work of art.
29. Easy But Faux DIY Floating Shelves Plan
Some people love that floating shelf look but have no time or skill to make it. The solution, of course, becomes faux floating shelves, which use corner braces to hold them to the wall.
These shelves were designed to hang above the toilet and provide display space for beautiful pictures. Since the picture frames will cover up the braces, the shelves will just appear to be floating shelves.
The guide is simple and straight to the point. All you need is lumber, your braces, screws and paint or finish.
30. DIY Floating Shelves from Scrap Wood Guide
The goal here was to add floating shelves to the closet. There are lots of pictures in this guide, but asides form showing a few places where the work was being done, there is nothing more to see.
There are instructions too, but they do not state exactly how to cut the wood, nor how long it should be. No material list, no cut list, nothing.
And why is it on this list? It's about the design. The way that these 3 shelves combined with a hanging rack to form a simple and yet cute wardrobe.
31. Dining Room Floating Shelves DIY Storage Plans
It's always great to have more storage space where you can keep things handy. The shelves in this guide were made for the dining room and they provide shelf space for glasses.
This guide is complete with a materials list and a step by step guide with lots of pictures. The lumbers are joined together using pocket holes and the boards were stained before being hung on the wall.
At $48 material cost for the 2 shelves, each shelf cost about $24 to make. You could also get a little creative and not stain the wood, but rather paint them in an unforgettable way.
32. Simple But Elegant DIY Designer Hanging Shelves Tutorial
Juliana is a designer and she made this shelf project for her baby's room. The idea is very simple and straight, but the resulting effect is absolutely marvelous.
What Juliana did was to buy inexpensive wooden boxes in 3 different sizes from Home Depot. She then paints the back of the boxes in soft girly colors since she has a baby girl.
Next step is the hammering of sawtooth hangers to the boxes and hanging them on the wall. You could hook up all the boxes together if you like, but Juliana left hers the way they are for arrangement flexibility.
33. Jen's Laundry Room Floating Shelves Guide
Jen shows us in this guide how she built 2 floating shelves in her laundry room. The frame is built using 2x3 lumbers, while the front is made from 1x6s.
There is plywood for the top, then she applied caulk to fill all the holes and painted the shelves in Behr's Ultra Pure White latex paint.
Both shelves cost Jen about $60 to make, which puts the cost of a single shelf at $30.
34. Free DIY Floating Shelves Plans
Janice is a college professor, but she loves home decor and woodworking. She built 3 shelves for her home twice, with the first set being short and brown stained while the second set is much longer and stained black.
This guide is from the longer shelves' construction. She uses 2x2s for the frames which are attached to the wall. Then she uses 1x6s for the tops and 1x4 for the front and sides.
Janice presents all this in 6 steps, from the cutting to the building, to the sliding on.
We have come to the end of this long list of DIY floating shelves and I'm sure you've seen what you would love to build.
Feel free to pin any images and to share this article.
Also feel free to reach out to me and let me know what you plan on building. I always love some feedback, so please use the comment box.