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DIY Floating Wall Shelf – Kippi at Home

Need more storage? These DIY easy floating wall shelves are the perfect solution.  They make a great place to display treasured photos and decor. Moreover, they add extra storage and function to underutilized wall space.

Small spaces can appear larger with a few wall shelves or picture ledges to draw the eye up and add interest to a boring wall space. Since I am doing a bedroom makeover for my daughter’s small bedroom I decided I would add a floating shelf. A DIY floating wall shelf will add some much-needed storage.

Olivia's pretty bed, easy llama pillow

Floating Shelf

Note: You might enjoy learning how to make the llama pillow and Boho style pillow sham with tassels.

Before we move onto this project I wanted to share that I am participating in a 5 week 5 project for $500 with other amazing bloggers. See their projects at the end of this post for a ton of inspiration.

Room Challenge

WEEK 1/ WEEK 2/ WEEK3 / WEEK 4/ WEEK 5 REVEAL

How to Build Floating Shelves

Learn how to build unique floating shelves with these easy to follow steps. I asked Mr. Kippi at Home for some help on this DIY project.

Note: These plans build a (23.5″ x 6″ x 1.5″) floating shelf. However, you can build them at any size with a few adjustments.

This post contains affiliate links. This means that if you purchase from one of these links I will make a small commission, but rest assured you will not pay more for any products. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Gather your power tools, measuring and marking utensils:

Let’s get started building. But first writing out the cut plan. Just like when I am planning a sewing, upholstery, or window treatment project I start with a cut plan thus saving time and money from making the wrong cuts.

Floating shelf cut plan

The Floating shelf cut plan

Setting the fence to 5.25″ to cut the top and bottom of the shelf out of 3/8″ plywood.

Floating shelf setting the table saw fence

Floating shelf setting the table saw fence

Making Lumbar Cuts

Making my first cut in the plywood.

Cut the shelf top and bottom out of 3/8" lumbar

Cut the shelf top and bottom out of 3/8″ lumber

This handmade push stick was made from scrap lumber. It offers a safe way to push lumbar through the saw.

Tip: Make or purchase a push stick.

Handmade push stick

Handmade push stick

The next step is to rip 3/4″ plywood strips at 1.5″ wide.

Ripping 3/4" plywood strips 1.5" wide for internal frame

Ripping 3/4″ plywood strips 1.5″ wide for the internal frame

Rip a pine board into 1.5″ wide x 20″ for the wall support or cleat.

Ripping wall cleat to 1.5" wide

Next, Ripping wall cleat to 1.5″ wide

To cut the top and bottom of the shelf to a length of 22″ from the 3/8″ plywood.

Cutting shelf top and bottom to 22"

Cutting shelf top and bottom to 22″

Using a miter saw cut the internal frame to 22″.

Cutting internal frame 22"

Cutting internal frame 22″

Cut both the internal frame ends to length 3.75″.

Marking the end pieces for the internal frame

Marking the end pieces for the internal frame

Cutting internal frame ends

Cutting internal frame ends

Before moving to the next cut I like to lay out the pieces to make sure that everything fits together.

Checking my lumbar cuts

Checking my lumbar cuts

 

Marking the wall cleat to length

Marking the wall cleat to length

Cut the floating shelf installation cleat to 18.5″.

Cutting the Trim Miters

Cutting miters for trim

Cutting miters for trim

Trim looks professional when mitered together, thus I decided to miter cut the outer trim pieces. Cuts are out of 1 x 2 x 6 pine board.

Marking the length for miter of the front trim

Marking the length for miter of the front trim

The shelf top was my guide to mark for the length of the trim.

Checking miter ends for fit and length

Checking miter ends for fit and length

Again, I lined up all the woodcuts to be sure everything fit together.

Dry fitting all the pieces together for size

Dry fitting all the pieces together for size

Dry fitting all wall shelf pieces before assembling.

Floating Shelf Assembly

Now for the assembling of our shelf.

Gather all supplies:

 

Assembly tool and cut lumbar

Assembly tool and cut lumbar

Gluing

Begin assembling the shelf by gluing the internal frame to the shelf bottom panel.

After gluing the internal frame turn over the assembly and nail (3/4″ brads) the shelf bottom to frame.

Nail glued pieces to internal frame

Nail glued pieces to the internal frame

Repeat the process to attach the top shelf panel.

 

Next, glue the front edge trim to the shelf front and then nail (1.5″ brads) to hold into place.

Glue the trim pieces to the ends and nail (1.5″ brads) into place.

Wall Cleat

Test fit the wall cleat to be sure it fits before attaching it to the wall.

Before the installation fill in the nail holes then sand and finish as desired.

Installing Shelves

Gather tools and supplies:

The first step with the install is to find the stud with a stud finder. Next, predrill holes in the cleat (shelf supports). Install one screw on the end of the cleat and make sure it is level then screw in the rest of the screws.

Tip: At least one screw needs to be installed into a stud.  The other end can be installed with a wall anchor or toggle bolts.

Installing the shelf cleat

Installing the shelf cleat

Checking placement for floating shelf

Checking placement for floating shelf

Add a few screws to attach the floating shelf box after sliding it into position on the cleat.

Screwing floating shelf to cleat

Screwing floating shelf to the cleat

Floating shelves

Floating shelves

These easy floating shelves or picture ledges are very inexpensive and add value and function to your home. Please PIN for later HERE.

Romantic Boho Chic Room Transformation:

The DIY floating shelf is one of the many stops on my way to making over my daughter’s Romantic Boho Chic bedroom transformation. I promise you will love everything we are doing on a tight budget with a ton of DIY’s so join us as we get swept away into a romantic Boho room transformation. Have you been dreaming of a magazine-worthy home? But don’t know where to start?

My Favorite Floating Shelf Pick

If you would like a floating shelf and you don’t have time to make one this one is perfect.

Now For More Amazing and Inspiring Makeovers:

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JUDY

Monday 5th of October 2020

Love your site and am anxious to create from your tutorials. Does your husband cut all of your wood? If not, a tutorial on how to use the electric hand saw would be helpful.

Pamela

Monday 2nd of March 2020

I love how Mr. Kippi at Home helps out on some of your posts!! This floating shelf turned out perfect for that space.

Kippi

Wednesday 4th of March 2020

Thank you so much for your visit. Building easy floating shelves is a breeze and they look gorgeous too. Happy Shelf Building, Kippi

Rebecca Celhar

Thursday 27th of February 2020

Love these DIY floating wall shelves! I like that you made them longer. I feel like so many of them are too short!

Kippi

Thursday 27th of February 2020

Becca, thank you so much for stopping by. I too like longer DIY floating wall shelves. Have a wonderful week. Hugs, Kippi

Carrie @ Curly Crafty Mom

Thursday 27th of February 2020

I just adore floating shelves and it really adds so much to this room. And, what a gorgeous room this is! I love the clean palette with little pops of color and that llama pillow. :)

Carrie curlycraftymom.com

Kippi

Thursday 27th of February 2020

Carrie, thank you so much for your visit and kind comments. I really like making my own floating shelves so I can make them custom. Have a great week, Kippi

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